The coronavirus pandemic flipped the world on its head and knocked farmers off our feet when it started its spread. But instead of giving in, we showed the true spirit of rural America by helping our neighbors out. Hand sanitizer suddenly became a vital necessity, and ethanol facilities shifted their production capabilities to meet this sudden spike in demand.
State associations jumped in to help with the distribution. The Illinois Corn Growers Association partnered with other farm groups to distribute sanitizer to retailers to keep them in the field through the critical planting period. “I thought it was important to help the community during this crisis. It made the most sense to purchase products made right here in Illinois and distribute them across the state. Logistics was the trickiest part,” Rodney Weinzierl, executive director of Illinois Corn, said.
The New York Corn and Soybean Growers Association teamed up with Western New York Energy to deliver sanitizer to farmers. “We applaud Western New York Energy’s ability and willingness to pivot their business to provide much-needed sanitation resources while maintaining the market for our growers during these uncertain times,” said New York Corn and Soybean Growers Association Executive Director Colleen Klein.
The Kentucky Corn Growers Association partnered with Commonwealth Agri-Energy to donate bottles of sanitizer to ag retailers and venues like livestock sale barns and farmers markets. “Now more than ever, it’s important to stay connected and take care of one another,” said Kentucky Corn Executive Director Laura Knoth.