The devastation wrought by the discovery of the notorious “Covid-19” virus makes clear that the development of a vaccine against this deadly virus is imperative. However, it also raises important questions about how the world should respond to the threat of the world’s most deadly virus. Should the world take action now or wait until the threat has subsided?
Contamination Of Meat, Poultry And Produce With the Discovery of the Corona Virus
The threat posed by the Corona Virus began to be noticed early in the last decade when outbreaks of diarrhea and vomiting occurred in countries such as Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
A brief analysis of the epidemiology suggests that in many countries that have been affected, the infection appears to be associated with exposure to fecal matter, but not always. In a number of cases, the virus has also been associated with exposure to animal feces, suggesting a more general human-to-animal transmission mechanism.
It is no surprise that health and food safety officials in all countries are taking immediate responses to the virus. Yet, the threat posed by the Corona Virus is not just about the short-term health effects. On the contrary, the threat of the virus is even greater than the risk of acquiring the disease because of the potential of mass contamination.
It is important for us to understand the ramifications of the discovery of the Corona Virus in order to assess the implications of this virus for agriculture and food security. We will first address the potential impact on the food chain. We will then examine the implications for agricultural export, especially in countries such as Honduras, El Salvador, Haiti, and others.
Most of the major food chain systems depend on the cleanliness of the water supply. The clean water, in turn, becomes part of the water supply in that the animals consume the water. As the animals and other farmworkers drink contaminated water, their ingestion can be picked up by humans and they can become ill. The spread of the disease may lead to an increase in sickness among humans.
Also read: Human Trials for COVID-19 Vaccine Begins
The large population of these nations in Ghana, Central America, and the Caribbean also makes a huge impact on the spread of the disease. With so many people at risk, the potential for an outbreak is greatly increased in such countries.
There is no question that the spread of the virus could have a major impact on the agricultural sector in the three countries affected. The potential for contaminated food on the domestic market will also impact the ability of farmers to sell their produce in markets. They will need to rely on international markets to get their products sold and this will make the cost of the products higher and drive up the cost of the food in many countries.
If the viruses were to reach the United States, the agricultural exports would be negatively impacted and other import markets would suffer as well. In addition, large numbers of Haitians may travel to the United States in order to obtain the food and the import costs of their crops could drive up the cost of the Haitian economy. In a worst-case scenario, the loss of agricultural exports could put the Haitian economy on a very steep slope.
In a scenario similar to what happened in the upper hemisphere in the 1980s with smallpox, the economic impact of this virus could create the kind of crisis that leads to an attempted quarantine. In the mid-1980s, when a vaccine was developed to combat smallpox, all African nations were under quarantine until the disease was completely eradicated.
The concept of putting all the world’s farmers under quarantine because of the outbreak of one disease created a lot of alarm in developed countries and a great deal of emotional pressure on the political leaders of those countries.
Today, the impact on world politics from the discovery of the Corona Virus is likely to be more subtle, but it still has a large impact on our way of life. For example, if we fail to act quickly, the possibility exists that the food supply in our supermarkets and groceries is contaminated with the virus. This will drive up the cost of many of the staples that we rely on, including meat, poultry, and produce.