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Francis Wilkinson

An Outbreak Among Farm Workers Would Be Catastrophic

It is difficult to protect agricultural laborers and would be even harder to replace them.

Essential workers.

Essential workers.

Photographer: Brent Stirton/Getty Images North America

There is no evidence that Covid-19 has been transmitted by food or food packaging, according to U.S. federal health agencies.  How the virus fares among food workers may be a different story.

By law, food manufacturers must prevent anyone who is sick or has a communicable disease from handling, processing or preparing food for human consumption. But much of the food supply chain is staffed by low-wage workers, many of them undocumented immigrants with limited ties to health services.