As coronavirus cases continue to climb across the United States, IDFA is committed to ensuring that the health and safety of our workforce remains the key priority among our industry as well as among legislators and policymakers at the local, state and national levels of government.
The expected transition from a Trump to a Biden administration within the executive branch of the federal government, as well as changes in key House and Senate leadership positions, make this a critical time for input from IDFA and other industry representatives. To that end, IDFA is joining with a number of organizations representing businesses across food, agriculture, retail, and consumer packaged goods to protect workers and keep the food supply chain running uninterrupted.
We want to take this opportunity to bring our members up to date on our efforts, and to provide some guidance for the critical weeks ahead.
2. IDFA Has Confirmed that Food Industry Workers Are a Priority Population for a COVID-19 Vaccine: In conversations and meetings with FDA officials, and through recently published materials, IDFA has been able to confirm that food industry workers are considered essential and a priority population for a COVID-19 vaccine. We encourage our members to review the COVID-19 Vaccination Program Interim Playbook offered by the CDC.
4. IDFA Encourages Trump Administration to Prioritize Food Workers in COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution and to Build Trust Among Public: IDFA has joined with a number of food industry groups to urge the Trump Administration to carry out a federally orchestrated vaccine distribution program and prioritization of vaccination among key population groups, including frontline healthcare workers as well as critical infrastructure employees which include the food, agriculture, manufacturing, and retail industries. Prioritizing vaccinations for food, agriculture, retail, and CPG workers will be a key intervention to help keep workers healthy and to ensure that agricultural and food supply chains remain operating. In a letter to President Trump, we strongly encouraged the Administration to launch a strong, coordinated, public education campaign to ensure widespread and sustained acceptance of vaccinations and to leverage state and local cooperative public health organizations to help ensure consistent communication.
6. Monitoring and Engaging on State Health Orders: IDFA is working with our IDFA members and our state and regional contacts to monitor the continually changing COVID-related restrictions in various states due to the ongoing public health crisis. For your information on these matters, we consider the National Governors Association to be the best, most up-to-date resource for tracking potential orders and regulations. You can find the NGA resource here: https://www.nga.org/state-covid-19-emergency-orders/
I recognized that this is a challenging time for many, and I encourage you to reach out with questions or comments about how IDFA can continue to best position our industry. IDFA continues to provide updates via www.idfa.org/coronavirus. Thank you for your collaboration, cooperation and commitment to our dairy industry. Have a safe Thanksgiving holiday.