Regional and plant-size impacts of COVID-19 on beef processing

Date
2022-04
Authors
Bina, Justin D.
Tonsor, Glynn T.
Schulz, Lee
Hahn, William F.
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Schulz, Lee
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Economics
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Economics
Abstract
During the COVID-19 pandemic, U.S. consumers witnessed changes in the volume and type of meat products available at retail and food service markets. Simultaneously, widening farm-to-wholesale price spreads fueled calls for industry change and several related policy proposals. The objective of this study is to document fed cattle slaughter and evaluate the structure and performance of the beef processing industry during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. For major beef-producing regions, the 2019–2020 change in federally inspected U.S. cattle slaughter volumes varied in isolated instances with regional reliance on larger processing facilities. Implications of this are discussed both for current policy and industry discussions, as well as to encourage additional future research.
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This article is published as Bina, Justin D., Glynn T. Tonsor, Lee L. Schulz, and William F. Hahn. "Regional and Plant-Size Impacts of COVID-19 on Beef Processing." Food Policy 108 (2022): 102247. doi:10.1016/j.foodpol.2022.102247. Works produced by employees of the U.S. Government as part of their official duties are not copyrighted within the U.S. The content of this document is not copyrighted.
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