WACO, Texas – As people buy large amounts of food, groceries across Central Texas are seeing a huge surge in sales. But for food producers, it’s quite the opposite.
“Dairy is down about a fourth or third than its value before. Corn is down 14 percent. Cotton is down about a third,” says Reagan Beck, Director of Government for the Texas Farm Bureau.
Farmers make a living selling products (milk, cheese, and eggs) to schools and restaurants, but with those businesses closed, they are at a loss.
“Our market has been affected. The prices are falling. Our prices for May are very well below the cost of production,” says Darren Turley, a member of the Texas Association of Dairymen.
However, Waco’s Triple S Dairy farm is seeing a 25 percent to 40 percent increase in sales. Unlike other dairy producers, these farmers do not sell to businesses or schools – but to individual families.
“People don’t want to go to a big grocery store right now. They want to do that to potentially not get anything,” says dairy farmer Grady Phelan.
Although there are predictions that COVID-19 will get worse in the future, the farm industry is depending on aid from the History Stimulus Package to keep them afloat.