If you’ve been following news about the impact of COVID-19 restrictions on small businesses, you will have heard that livestock ranchers and dairy farmers are experiencing some major problems.
These small, often family-run, operations had been geared up to produce pork, beef, chicken, or milk based on a pre-existing demand, which has been interrupted by the end of their sales to restaurants. Many of these farms specialize in delivering meat to farm-to-table restaurants, and their ability to manage their business was based on guaranteed sales on a pre-agreed time scale.
Some of these folks have had to slaughter animals with no use of the meat, and some dairy farmers have destroyed thousands of gallons of milk. While individuals and families are still buying farm products like these, disruptions in the food processing and distribution markets have wreaked havoc on small producers.
When News Channel 11 in east Tennessee prepared a report on this issue, they called on Barry Bales, known to the bluegrass world as the long time bass player for Alison Krauss & Union Station, and a prominent sideman, songwriter, and producer in our business. But for the purposes of their story, the reporters at WJHL know Barry as the proprietor of Bales Farm in Mosheim, TN.
You can watch their report below.
Well done, Barry! Keep raising that good wholesome food.