How Supply Chain Shortages are Affecting Farms

Farmer in sunlit cowshed

Across the globe, COVID-19 has caused supply chain disruptions and shortages, both in exports and imports. Shortages have affected almost every industry, especially farmers and ranchers. From livestock feed to fertilizer, to fresh produce—demand is high.

Our planet’s global food system is a delicate balance of supply and demand management, and it takes time to correct once disturbed. It’s a confusing, worrying time for those in the agriculture industry, so in this article, we’ll be taking a closer look at how supply chain shortages are affecting farms.

From Farmer to Consumer

During the pandemic, many people were unable to work, which sent a ripple effect through the supply chain, causing a labor shortage in the trucking and railing industries. On top of this, there often aren’t enough shipping containers or metal frames to carry these products during transport.

Natural disasters have also had a part to play in supply chain problems, like hurricane Ida, which destroyed part of the Gulf region, where about 60% of exports go through. In addition, some agricultural exports cannot be completed because of high ocean carrier rates, unfair trade practices, and freighters declining to carry export cargo.

The Effects of Supply Chain Shortages on Agriculture

This supply chain shortage has affected everyone, but farmers and ranchers are especially feeling the burn. Agriculture professionals are facing a multitude of supply shortages in the U.S. right now, including:

Labor Shortages

Unfortunately, farm labor shortages have been an issue for a few years now. Besides the shortage of hired help on farms, there are also shortages in warehouse labor, truck driving labor, and other related jobs.

Farming Equipment Material Shortages

In the last few years, there has been a spike in demand for farming equipment, especially microchips. Because of the high demand and manufacturing shortages, it’s becoming hard for farmers to get access to the farming equipment they need.

Resin Shortages

Many chemical plants are closing, causing plastic production to be backlogged and halted. This limits the access farmers need to get essential plastic agricultural supplies, like silage bags, net wraps, and baler twine.

Shipping Container Shortages

Due to the shortage of agricultural shipping containers, demand is rising, and the costs for packaging and transportation are rising with it. The same goes for container chassis, which are the metal frames used to support containers while being transported.

With the difficulties facing the agriculture industry, support is more important than ever. Carlson Wholesale is here to meet your farming equipment needs, from electric fence chargers to calf pens. Contact us today to learn how we’re helping farmers get through supply chain difficulties.

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