It’s the last day of April. I’m sitting at my desk in my home office where I’ve largely isolated myself for the past several weeks. I look out my window and things seems relatively unchanged compared to two months ago.
But the world has been shaken to its core. And it will never be quite the same again.
Yesterday’s headlines revealed the grim news that the 2019 coronavirus pandemic has now claimed over 60,000 U.S. citizens—more American lives than were lost during the Vietnam War (58,220). Globally, that number has surpassed 225,000. The numbers increase every hour. We are still in the midst of this terrible storm.
Many snack and bakery businesses will weather this unprecedented event. Others will struggle to survive. Some won’t make it.
Overall, the economic impact of this pandemic will be catastrophic. Society will need time to recover.
Businesses that survive this storm will need to take a close look at several aspects of their operations in order to best prepare for the future. Supply-chain and distribution managers will need to assess the ability to withstand a future event of this magnitude. Food safety and sanitation leads might need to amend plans to compensate for pandemic preparedness. Operations managers will likely take a harder look at automation.
Our work is cut out for us.
Here at BNP Media, we’re repositioning the challenges posed by the pandemic as an opportunity to significantly grow the sophistication of our digital presence. In a few short months, all of our publications company-wide will convert to digital publication where we can better serve the needs of our increasingly online world. We have an amazing digital team, and we’re looking forward to establishing the cutting-edge of digital publishing to help you get the information you need and want—at an instant’s notice—to help your business succeed. You can visit www.snackandbakery.com/subscribe to sign up for our newly updated SF&WB Digital Edition and The Weekly Mix newsletter. We also have a section of our website dedicated to coronavirus news at www.snackandbakery.com/coronavirus-coverage where you can stay up to date on industry developments arising from the pandemic.
The grain-based foods industry is a tight-knit group. Many of us spend our entire careers in this industry, growing, building relationships, sharing life. We lift each other up and often collaborate to find solutions together. Every day, as I log onto my computer, it’s heartwarming to see the news pour in from across the industry with updates about how snack and bakery companies are stepping up to assist during these troubled times.
But a new age of innovation is already starting to emerge on the horizon. The storm will pass. And, in time, we will thrive again.