Work Group Would Identify Solutions to Issues Exposed by COVID-19 Pandemic
(ALBANY, NY) – Legislation designed to improve the resiliency of New York’s food supply chain has been introduced by Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo, Chair of the Assembly Committee on Agriculture. The bill (A10607) would create a working group to provide advice, guidance, and recommendations on New York’s food supply and related supply chain logistics in the wake of COVID-19.
“This pandemic exposed a number of fundamental weaknesses in our food supply chain,” said Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo. “Because the supply chain was unable to adapt to changing market demands, bottlenecks were created in processing, distribution, and storage. Consumers watched as milk and other commodities were disposed of, at the same time food lines grew and some shortages began. The working group I’m proposing would develop contingency plans for disruptions like COVID, recommending infrastructure and other needed improvements.”
“While our food production system is strong in New York, the pandemic also exposed some fragile points along the supply chain as commodity markets were upended by sudden changes in supply and demand,” said David Fisher, New York Farm Bureau President. “New York Farm Bureau appreciates the Assembly Agriculture Committee Chair Donna Lupardo’s proactive approach to bring stakeholders together to improve the food distribution system in New York to work better for producers, consumers, and our state’s economy.”
This legislation would authorize the Commissioner of Agriculture and Markets, in coordination with the Commissioner of Economic Development, to establish a New York food supply working group. The group would include representatives from farming, food processing, food retail, foodservice, wholesalers, food transporters, labor, emergency food providers, academia, government representatives and others. Through a series of meetings and roundtables, policy recommendations would be advanced to strengthen and protect NY’s food supply chain.