The National Corn Growers Association is encouraging farmers to make a plan to stay healthy amid the COVID-19 outbreak and their upcoming spring planting.
According to a recent farmer survey, 70 percent of them have no formal back-up plan if a key member of their family farming operation becomes ill with COVID-19.
NCGA says even though most corn farms continue to be family-run operations with few employees or seasonal help, it’s still a good idea to get a basic plan in place.
Some of their suggestions include scheduling a brainstorming meeting with all family and employees to discuss possible scenarios and solutions.
Another key step is to minimize exposure to outsiders. Use the telephone, email, and text messages for communications with employees or contractors who don’t reside on the farm.
Observe social distancing if someone has to come to the farm.
Consider cross-training family members and employees on key farm functions and equipment operation.
They also encourage farmers to increase sanitizing workspaces and make it a part of the daily routine on the farm.
One of the most important things people can do is stay in the house if they get sick. If employees are sick, make sure to tell them to stay home.
If a family member falls ill, they should isolate themselves as much as possible and not visit work areas.