Staple crop production and non-perishable food brands have seen a spike in demand comparable to what they would observe in case of a natural disaster or during the Christmas period.
However, fresh food and more specialized, higher-value crop producers that mainly sell to restaurants or at farmers' markets experience a fall in demand. They are also at high risk of losing extreme amounts of food due to the lack of available properly trained workers.
Solutions and technologies that can preserve fresh produce or turn expired fruit, vegetables and dairy products into food aid that then can be shipped internationally to countries in need will gain more traction.
Packaging producers will need to adjust their products for e-commerce distribution and protect perishable products from spoilage and potential damage during delivery. And eventually, companies that are able to produce alternative forms of packaging made from upcycled waste will come out on top.
MOVEMENTS OF GOODS & RESOURCES
When supermarket shelves turned into the live stream of government bans
Today, one in every five calories people consume crosses at least one international border. This being said, as countries like Russia, Vietnam or Kazakhstan decide to restrict the export of staple cereals, we can expect global price escalation.
Trade halts will lead to higher domestic supply pushing the prices down and depressing the livelihood of farmers. On the contrary, countries that rely on the import of these commodities will face increasing prices, throwing people into a situation of food insecurity.
The recent Chinese pork production drop pushed global prices higher. While local producers could benefit from the average 35% price increase, once consumers noticed the price increase, they turned towards other protein sources.
In order to preserve the single market operation, ensure a smooth supply of essential goods and thus guarantee the food security of citizens, the green lane border crossing was designed by the European Commission.
Neighbouring non-EU countries are invited to work closely with this network to ensure the flow of goods in all directions.
Similar supporting policies and law relaxations would be needed to allow collaboration and ease access to labor markets while also ensuring fair and safe work conditions. The upcoming harvest and spring sowing season are under threat due to border closures. Germany alone is lacking 300 000 workers.
“You cannot miss harvest and you cannot harvest what has not been planted,” said Julia Klöckner, the German Federal Minister for Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection, at a recent press conference.
The lack of low-cost mobile labor from Eastern Europe could reduce overall agricultural yield, and lead to a shortage of domestic fruit and vegetable supply, therefore potentially limiting the demand for agricultural sector products, eroding consumer surplus and ultimately causing sector revenue to decline.