Amid COVID-19 outbreak beef producers remain vigilant
DENVER – Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a serious and rapidly changing situation throughout Colorado and the entire United States. The virus and its impacts are being taken very seriously throughout the beef industry. The health of the public and our employees is of the highest priority, as well as our responsibility to produce and deliver safe and wholesome food throughout the nation and the world.
“The United States food and beef supply is the safest and most abundant in the world. The beef industry remains committed to providing the same nutritious, safe, and wholesome products consumers expect, even during these stressful times,” said Steve Wooten, Colorado Cattlemen’s Association president. According to the Center for Disease Control, there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with food. However, it is always important to follow good hygiene practices (i.e., wash hands and surfaces often, separate raw meat from other foods, cook to the proper temperature, and refrigerate foods promptly) when handling or preparing foods.
With empty shelves and aisles in grocery stores throughout Colorado it may appear that the United States is running out of food. Be assured that there is plenty of food, it is just a short-term disruption of the food supply. “According to the North American Meat Institute, there is food being produced and there is food in warehouses,” stated Sallie Miller, chair of the Colorado Beef Council. “There is plenty of food available in the country.” In particular, retail demand for beef remains high and beef suppliers are prepared to continue to meet consumer demands.
“Our thoughts go out to those impacted by COVID-19, and rest assured our industry is poised and ready to face the challenges presented by the onset of COVID-19,” said Mike Veeman, Colorado Livestock Association president. While our industry is prepared to proceed with caution and take the necessary steps to limit the rate of infection of COVID-19, our producers will continue to fuel the economy through their actions in caring for livestock and ultimately bringing needed protein all across the state, nation, and world.
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I ventured out to Target last week to buy a few grocery items and the next day I read in the newspaper that several Target employees tested positive for COVID-19. That’ll teach me to go…