COVID market disruptions were tougher on small firms spread up and down supply chain
To understand how the Pandemic affected regional food systems, CIAS faculty associate Andrew Stevens and graduate student Jim Teal partnered with CIAS and several other universities to survey nearly 900 businesses representing farmers, processors, wholesalers, retailers and restaurant owners. Our research team solicited participation from regional food businesses located in counties surrounding the Twin Cities, Los Angeles, and Miami metro regions.
Stevens and Teal analyzed the role of business organization and diversification based on survey responses. They found that vertically diversified firms were more vulnerable to supply chain disruption than were undiversified businesses. Horizontally diversified buisnesses fared the best. They were less vulnerable than undiversified businesses. These and other results were published in the American Journal of Agricultural Economics and featured on the UW website.
For more information on the project, findings, and webinars, go to: https://cias.wisc.edu/positioning-regional-food-supply-chains-for-future-pandemics-natural-disasters-and-human-made-crises/
Stevens, A., Teal, J. (2023) “Diversification and resilience of firms in the agrifood supply chain“. Journal of Agricultural Economics. DOI 10.1111/ajae.12398
This research was supported by a grant from USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (2020–68006-33037).