MPAC Encouraged By Resources Provided In Defense Production Act For Meat, Poultry
May 6, 2020 | View PDF
Montana Pork Producers Council (MPPC) recognizes the importance of evoking the Defense Production Act for Meat and Poultry. Providing federal guidance to packing plants to ensure they can remain open, the Executive Order signed by President Trump on Tuesday is an unprecedented action for unprecedented times in the agricultural industry.
MPPC looks forward to seeing additional details of a plan to ensure workers remain in a safe environment while providing these essential food-processing services. “We expect our processors to continue following the guidance issued by CDC and OSHA to ensure worker safety,” says Anne Miller, MPPC Executive Director. “This recent announcement provides a clear path for the Secretary of Agriculture to take a leadership role in keeping our packing plants open through this time period and we urge this leadership to provide vital resources to our meat processing infrastructure, such as masks and accelerated testing capabilities.”
This is progress in bridging the gap between hungry communities and the pork producers working to get their animals to market. However, farmers across the nation still face agonizing decisions to euthanize and dispose of pigs they are unable to sell. MPPC would like to see further steps to support these farms in both the actual process and to address the mental health needs after the process has occurred. “I am receiving calls from Montana producers that I consider friends, worried about what they will be forced to do if their hogs are unable to go into the food supply and they are out of space,” Miller explains. “They are going to need help.”