COVID-19 Supply Chain News

updated June 25, 2020

General Supply Chain News:

7 APR 2020: Truckers warn supply chain in jeopardy if they don’t get better COVID-19 protection (Seattle Times)


2 MAR 2020: Coronavirus: “Profound Impacts” On Fertilizer and Crop Protection (agweb)
“Hubei province accounts for about 14.7 million metric tons of finished phosphate production and has about 60% of their plants out of production currently. The other 40% are running in various states of capacity.”

24 MAR 2020: COVID-19: Effects on the Fertilizer Industry (IHS Markit)

8 APR 2020: Challenges in the agriculture sector, and their impact on Fertilizer markets (IHS Markit)
“As the spread of the virus takes hold some production hubs will be more vulnerable than others. Whereas we anticipate that unless there are factors outside their control, the larger more efficient fertilizer producers in certain regions will continue to operate at a stable rate for the foreseeable future, production in some parts of the world are not looking as sure, for example in certain parts of Africa. Phosphate rock mining is relatively labour intensive and there are some reports of a curtailment in production as producers look to reduce the workforce needed at any one time in a bid to protect workers and contain the virus.


12 MAR 2020: Coronavirus pandemic will disrupt international supply chains (Chemistry World)
<> 50% of technical inputs for pesticides produced in India come from China.

3 APR 2020: East Africa locust swarms gather as coronavirus curbs delay pesticides (Reuters)

Other Food Supply / Food Production:

Q&A: COVID-19 pandemic – impact on food and agriculture (Food & Agriculture Organization of the UN)

17 MAR 2020: 6 Impacts of COVID-19 on Agriculture (University of WI – Madison)

28 MAR 2020: Coronavirus hits already struggling US farmers (CNBC)

1 APR 2020: Yes, There are COVID-19 Impacts on Agriculture (American Farm Bureau Federation)
image from the article:

3 APR 2020: Coronavirus upends global food supply chains in latest economic shock (Reuters)

3 APR 2020: Coronavirus Impact Ripples Across Farm Country (American Farm Bureau Federation)

6 APR 2020: Tyson Closes Iowa Pork Plant Amid COVID-19 Outbreak (BrownfieldAgNews) 

8 APR 2020: Farmers Are Panic-Buying to Keep America’s 95 Million Cows Fed (BloombergQuint)

9 APR 2020: Coronavirus Latest: Major Meat Processors Shutting Down Plants As Employees Get Sick With COVID-19 (CBS Philadelphia)

13 APR 2020: U.S. Meat Supply Is ‘Perilously Close’ To A Shortage, CEO Warns (NPR)

13 APR 2020: ‘Elbow to elbow:’ North America meat plant workers fall ill, walk off jobs (Reuters)

17 APR 2020: Fresh produce goes to waste as coronavirus wrecks supply chains (TheHill)

20 APR 2020: Iowa Sends National Guard Troops to Defend Meat Plants From Virus (YahooNews)

21 APR 2020: Coronavirus: World risks ‘biblical’ famines due to pandemic – UN (BBC)

22 APR 2020: Five threats to US food supply chains (TheHill)

22 APR 2020: Tyson Foods idles its largest pork plant after Iowa outbreak (AP)

22 APR 2020: Coronavirus at meatpacking plants worse than first thought, USA TODAY investigation finds (USAToday)

23 APR 2020: Poultry industry struggles with plunging sales, coronavirus deaths (TheHill)

25 APR 2020: Alabama chicken plants scramble to slow outbreaks of coronavirus (AL dot com)

27 APR 2020: Coronavirus breaks the food supply chain (Axios)

5 MAY 2020: Rotting food. Hungry masses. Chaotic supply chains. Coronavirus upends the U.S. food system (YahooNews)

5 MAY 2020: 58 percent of workers at Tyson meat factory in Iowa test positive for coronavirus (NBCNews)
“An Iowa Public Health Department report showed that more than 700 workers contracted the virus at a meat plant in Perry.”

11 MAY 2020: ANALYSIS-As U.S. meat workers fall sick and supplies dwindle, exports to China soar (Reuters)
“The disruptions mean consumers could see 30% less meat in supermarkets by the end of May, at prices 20% higher than last year, according to Will Sawyer, lead economist at agricultural lender CoBank.

While pork supplies tightened as the number of pigs slaughtered each day plunged by about 40% since mid-March, shipments of American pork to China more than quadrupled over the same period, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture data.”

11 MAY 2020: At least 4,500 Tyson workers have caught COVID-19, with 18 dying. The meat giant still doesn’t offer paid sick leave, as the industry blames workers for outbreaks (Yahoo)

9 JUN 2020: More Food Shortages Loom With Outbreaks at 60 U.S Plants (Bloomberg)

16 JUN 2020: As Meat Plants Stayed Open to Feed Americans, Exports to China Surged (NYTimes)

Personal Protective Equipment & Other Medical Supplies:

4 MAR 2020: HHS clarifies US has about 1% of face masks needed for ‘full-blown’ coronavirus pandemic (CNBC)

9 MAY 2020: In the early days of the pandemic, the U.S. government turned down an offer to manufacture millions of N95 masks in America (WashingtonPost)

24 JUN 2020: Scarce medical oxygen worldwide leaves many gasping for life (AP)


31 JUL 2019: Testimony of Rosemary Gibson Before the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission “Exploring the Growing U.S. Reliance on China’s Biotech and Pharmaceutical Products”  (

14 AUG 2019: U.S. Dependence on Pharmaceutical Products From China (

27 FEB 2020: FDA Accounces First Drug Shortage Due to COVID-19 Supply Chain (

18 APR 2020: The coronavirus is leading to dangerous shortages of key medications (YahooNews)

28 APR 2020: Medication Shortages Are the Next Crisis (TheAtlantic)
“In addition to drugs for patients on mechanical ventilators, including sedatives such as etomidate, paralytics, and pain meds, we also need to fast-track the production of antibiotics such as azithromycin, cefepime, and others that we use to treat pneumonia.”

29 APR 2020: Painkillers, sedatives in short supply during COVID-19 pandemic (Roll Call)

“The New Jersey Hospital Association told CQ Roll Call that the three drugs it is seeing shortages of are fentanyl, propofol and cisatracurium.

“The most concerning shortages involved drugs used in intensive care units for patients on ventilators,” said Michael Ganio, senior director of pharmacy practice and quality at the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. “For pain and sedation, that includes fentanyl, midazolam, propofol, ketamine, and dexmedetomidine.”


28 MAR 2020: Why Didn’t We Test Our Trade’s ‘Antifragility’ Before COVID-19? (Callahan, Norman)