Coronavirus COVID-19 virus modelA year ago, packer spreads — the difference in price between fed cattle and boxed beef — were at record-high levels as the supply chain buckled under the weight of the COVID-19 pandemic and required shutdowns to beef processing and other jobs requiring close person-to-person contact while the world sorted out the details about the virus. After industry adjustments and with the support of federal payments, namely through CFAP, producers worked through supply disruptions that caused cattle producers to hold back feeder cattle and pork producers to liquidate slaughter-weight hogs. In addition to basic funding availability to support industry changes to improve resiliency, producers and processors made changes to their spots in the supply chain to facilitate the development of things like niche processors to meet pockets of demand. Now a year later, many of those businesses built in 2020 are thriving and weighing expansion. See more meat industry reflections a year out from the COVID-19 pandemic’s start.