COVID-19 has had unprecedented effects on the US economy, in large part because of its effects on workers. Within food and agriculture, these effects pose the greatest threat to the production of labor-intensive commodities—in particular, fruits and vegetables, the production of which tends to require large numbers of workers for harvesting and packing. We econometrically estimate the effects of COVID-19 on fruit and vegetable production as the US agricultural labor supply is adversely affected by this pandemic. The major crop losses include $16 million in lettuce, $5 million in apples, and $4 million in grapes.
- farm labor
- fruit and vegetable production