The COVID-19 vulnerability index of the food and drink industries is put online; experts available


WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – The United States faces supply chain disruptions as the holiday season approaches, and the impacts extend far beyond the delivery of gifts and ingredients for traditional meals. Experts from Purdue University are available to discuss supply chain disruptions and the new COVID-19 vulnerability index for the food and beverage industries.

COVID-19 Vulnerability Index

Two new online dashboards show the vulnerability of food and beverage manufacturing to the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic importance of these industries across the country.

Jayson Lusk, a nationally recognized food and agriculture economist, and director and professor emeritus of agricultural economics at Purdue University, led the team that developed the interactive dashboards. They are part of a portfolio of public dashboards created by the Center for Food Demand Analysis and Sustainability at Purdue University.

The Food and Beverage Industries COVID-19 Vulnerability Index dashboard by U.S. states and counties quantifies the risks to the supply of these products. It estimates the value of production that could be lost due to the COVID-19 disease among workers in the industry. Data can be adjusted from the US total to an individual county. A user can also select and view data for specific food and beverage industries, for example, dairy manufacturing, sugar and confectionery manufacturing, and animal processing. The dashboard is updated daily and adjusts its estimates based on the number of COVID cases reported in an area.

The Food and Beverage Industries Value Added Dashboard by U.S. States shows the total revenue of these industries, along with their contribution to the state’s gross domestic product and the number of employees. . It also shows the costs of materials, labor and capital for each industry, so that the relative importance of each for the supply chain can be seen.

Ahmad Zia Wahdat, postdoctoral associate researcher at the Center for Food Demand Analysis and Sustainability, developed the online dashboards with Lusk.

“One of the goals of the center is to take scattered and hard-to-process data and convert it into useful and easily accessible information,” Wahdat said. “The first COVID vulnerability dashboard focused on agriculture, and we wanted to add the food and beverage industries for a more complete picture in terms of food security. “

Jayson Lusk

Lusk is a leader in the development of online dashboards that can track, report and visually represent the factors that lead to supply chain disruptions during national and global emergencies. His team was the first to create an online dashboard to estimate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on a food supply chain when the team developed the Purdue Food and Agriculture Vulnerability Index in collaboration with Microsoft. . The index quantifies the potential risk to the supply of agricultural products due to the COVID-19 disease of farmers and agricultural workers.

Lusk oversees one of the best agricultural economics programs in the country and heads the Purdue Center for Food Demand Analysis and Sustainability. The centre’s mission is to bring together and present data in new ways to help inform decisions by consumers, farmers, businesses, academics and policymakers. He is also an expert on food preferences and consumers, and has authored several books on the economics of food consumption.

“COVID-19 has highlighted the complexity of food supply chains and underscores the need to understand how food moves from farm to fork,” Lusk said. “For consumers, supply chain disruptions have pushed up food prices. Our center aims to help consumers, farmers and agribusinesses predict and cope with rising inflation.

Joseph Balagtas

Joseph Balagtas, associate professor of agricultural economics at Purdue, was a senior economist on the White House Council of Economic Advisers when the COVID-19 pandemic began. From that point to the end of Balagtas’ tenure, the board focused on the economic consequences of the pandemic and supply chain issues.

Balagtas co-authored a 2021 journal volume for the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association devoted to the impacts of the pandemic on American agriculture. His article focused on the impact of COVID-19 on the US meat and livestock markets.

He conducts research on the economics of agricultural markets, including agricultural and food policy, the industrial organization of agricultural markets, poverty and food security. One of his current research projects focuses on supply chain issues in livestock and meat supply chains.

“The current supply chain disruptions are complex and multifaceted,” Balagtas said. “Policy solutions that fail to appreciate the complexity can be ineffective, even exacerbating existing problems or creating new ones. “

Media contact: To arrange an interview with Lusk, Balagtas or Wahdat, please contact Maureen Manier [email protected]

High resolution images are available at this link: Ag Econ Dashboards – Google Drive

Agricultural communications: 765-494-8415;

Maureen Manier, Head of Department, [email protected]

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