When the world was on lockdown, supermarkets have run empty due to high demand. Eventually, those in the hospitality industry started to close for business, and food producers have warned that there might be too much stock left that might go to waste.

But the impact of coronavirus on the food industry does not stop there. Here are some other ways that the pandemic has affected the supply chain of food worldwide.

Five Ways COVID-19 Pandemic Has Affected the Food Industry
(Photo: Yawar Nazir/Getty Images)
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1. Oversupply of milk

Sad to say, the pandemic has forced many coffee shops to completely close, causing an oversupply of milk, a side-effect of the pandemic. The country's largest dairy cooperative, Dairy Farmers of America, estimated that a total of 3.7 million gallons of milk every day would be dumped because of disrupted supply routes.

This issue does not only happen in the U.S., but dairy farmers in the U.K. also ask the government for help due to their surplus problems. Every week, about five million liters of milk are at risk of being thrown away.

Peter Alvis, chair of the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers, warned that farmers would either reduce their products' value or dump their excess.

2. Crops Are Going to Waste

Global agriculture is affected by the pandemic, especially during the lockdowns. Problems across the agriculture sector have arisen due to changes in market demand and excess in stock.

According to some producers in the country, one chicken processor had to crash 750,000 unhatched eggs every week. Also, an onion farmer had no choice but to let his crops to decompose as he was unable to redistribute and lacks the facilities to store them.

A similar scenario is also happening in other countries like India, whose precious Darjeeling crop is going to waste.

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3. Staffing Shortages

With pandemic still raging on, people are forced to self-isolation, which means that industries lack the workforce they needed to operate. Farmers have encountered staffing problems, which is why some operations, like harvesting, are put on hold.

In an effort to avoid food waste, the U.K. government has encouraged domestic workers to render their service in any labor gaps under their 'Feed the Nation' campaign.

4. Changes in Shopping Habits

Due to the pandemic, there was a significant change in the shopping habit among the people. For instance, the demand for flour has risen in the U.K. during the lockdowns, perhaps because people stuck in their houses have turned to home-baking.

In France, there was an increase in demand for organic foods. Experts think that this may be due to the fact that people have been shopping at small local stores and wanted to eat more healthy ad local food during the pandemic.

5. Unused Food Stock

The lockdowns I the past months and even today have forced the pubs in many countries to close. A significant part of the industry's current supply of beer and ale might go to waste due to restrictions in establishments like them. That means pubs could be closed for the unforeseeable future.

Some of these liquids have a best before the date of only a few weeks, meaning there could be thousands of unused barrels in their basements that could be undrinkable once restrictions are lifted.

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