Missouri Farm Bureau survey measures COVID-19 impact on farmers, rural communities

The Missouri Farm Bureau surveyed 377 people — mostly farmers and Farm Bureau members — to study the effects of COVID-19 on farmers.

Many respondents expressed feelings of isolation, loneliness and depression, according to the Farm Bureau. The inability to attend church and fellowship with friends has had a big impact on rural life, the Farm Bureau reported.

Over 63% of respondents agreed that they take the pandemic seriously.

About 24% of livestock farmers surveyed have had a meat processor reduce the normal schedule of animals needed for processing.The economic shutdown also caused difficulties including supply chain disruptions for farm equipment and parts.

Only 13.4% of farmers received support from the government’s Paycheck Protection Program. About 58% of livestock farmers planned to apply for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program, another government program, since they had difficulties with qualifying for the PPP.

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