Experts say food supply chain is not broken in California

California Connection

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — The food supply chain isn’t breaking down and there is no shortage of meat, according to industry officials after President Trump used the Defense Production act to keep processing plants open.

California Grocer Association President Ronald Fong has the same message he did for buyers in March when consumers couldn’t find a single square of toilet paper on store shelves.

Fong says to buy as you would normally for a week at a time instead of a month and that this is a problem with distribution, not supply.

Fong describes the U.S. food system as the most sophisticated in the world and says that the number of companies affected by the closures, and now forced openings, is small given that all are in the market.

Fong admits shoppers may see less of one brand, like Tyson, in the refrigerated section right now.

Tyson’s CEO said earlier this week the food supply chain was breaking but, according to Fong, your retailer would then just start to rely on other sources for live protein.

Customers may not able to find their favorite cut or variety of a protein but he assures the public that stores will have meat.

Fong said he appreciates the action the president took with the Defense Production Act yesterday but feels the system itself would have course corrected.

“I think the gaps would be picked up naturally by working longer and overtime hours for the processing plants that are open,” said Fong. “But it certainly does help that the president has opened up other resources for us so that there won’t be such a disruption in the processing system in the United States.”

Fong says retailers have a lot of different sources for protein and it may take a little time to shift sources if one they normally use has been closed and now has to reopen.

But if those places aren’t supplying your neighborhood store you may not see any disruption at all.

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