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Stay healthy in the time of COVID-19

By Liz Stahl, Extension Educator – Crops and Phyllis Bongard, Educational Content Development & Communications Specialist

Farmers and those working throughout the agricultural supply chain will soon be in the midst of the 2020 planting season. Staying healthy during this time is particularly critical as the optimal planting window is only so wide and it can be extremely weather dependent. It may be very difficult to find trained replacement labor if one were to fall ill during this time. Many farmers are also at an age that puts them at higher risk from a COVID-19 infection. 

For personal safety and to maintain a COVID-19 free labor force, farmers and all who are in the agricultural supply chain are encouraged to follow measures suggested by health officials:
  • Follow the Center for Disease Control guidelines of washing hands, limiting travel and social distancing.
  • Don’t work through an infection due to the serious risks this disease poses and the risk of transmitting the virus to others.
The article “2020 Planting Decisions in the Face of COVID-19”, by the University of Illinois, further discusses the importance of maintaining a healthy farming work force (

Attend a webinar for producers and ag professionals 

The Upper Midwest Agricultural Safety and Health Center (UMASH) is hosting a webinar, What Ag Producers Need to Know About COVID-19 on Monday, March 23, at noon (12:00 PM CDT). The intended audience is agricultural producers, ranchers, farmers, farmworkers, veterinarians, Extension personnel, rural health care providers, and others who work in agriculture. Learn more about COVID-19 symptoms, transmission risks and how to reduce them. There is no cost to attend the program.

Register here

Additional resources

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