Because of the coronavirus pandemic, 2020 has been a year with more questions than answers for the Ag industry across the Northwest and across the country. And as farm county looks ahead to 2021 and the hope of life after the pandemic new questions arise. Alexis Taylor, director of the Oregon Department of Agriculture says just like before COVID-19, making sure Oregon producers have access to markets across the globe will be one of the top priorities at ODA.
But how business will be conducted remains a mystery.
“How do we continue to promote Oregon agriculture? Will people be coming here will those types of trade missions be happening? What do the digital/virtual type of promotions and activities look like in some of those markets? Is that even possible? So I think a really level setting in trying to figure out how do we support food and agriculture business in the state.”
In addition to market access, and opportunities for growth, the 2021 legislative session will be vital for the Ag industry moving forward. Taylor noted she’s been very impressed by the resilience of Oregon farmers and their ability to adapt on the fly to ensure they could continue to work through the pandemic. She added she’s also proud how farmers stepped up to protect the agricultural workforce.
“A conversation doesn’t happen with a farmer or rancher, food processor in our state that they are not concern about how do they continue to operate to ensure food security and stability in Oregon but in a way that is safe and protective of their workers. And I’m very proud of that, fact for our agriculture sector.”
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