Expert Pitch
West Virginia University

WVU Extension Service expert addresses national meat shortage concerns

28-Apr-2020 11:30 AM EDT, by West Virginia University

In response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, many meat processing and food production facilities have temporarily closed or reduced operations, raising concerns about shortages and the safety of our nation’s food supply. West Virginia University Extension Service Livestock Specialist Kevin Shaffer provides some insight about West Virginia’s beef supply and what we can do to help producers and fellow consumers.


“West Virginians should not panic about a national meat shortage. Empty or limited meat cases at your local grocer are likely the result of consumers irresponsibly over-buying meats. Though they are currently worth much less, beef cattle in West Virginia and across the nation are still moving through the supply chain despite market limitations caused by COVID-19. However, because of the decreased market value of live animals, some producers are electing not to or are unable to market animals that would otherwise be advancing through the supply chain.” 

“The biggest impact on West Virginia beef producers depends on their marketing strategy. The vast majority of producers market live animals and are seeing significant decreases in the market value of their animals. Producers who are harvesting their animals locally, as well as direct marketing beef producers, are seeing increased demand and increased sales. I would anticipate that West Virginia meat processors will see an increase in business throughout 2020.” 

“West Virginians consume about 100 million pounds of beef per year. West Virginia produces approximately 55 million pounds of retail cuts of beef per year, so we can supply a little over half of our total annual consumption. Consumers can help local producers by being responsible shoppers. Hoarding and binge-buying does not help producers or your fellow consumers." 

“To prepare for situations like these, producers need to work on a marketing plan and look at value added marketing options as well as cooperative marketing programs, like calf pools. If not already, they should become Beef Quality Assurance certified and seek assistance from their veterinarian on developing and implementing a comprehensive herd health program. Producers should also develop a grazing management plan to make the most of available forage resources.” – Kevin Shaffer, associate professor and livestock specialist, WVU Extension Service 

West Virginia University experts can provide commentary, insights and opinions on various news topics. Search for an expert by name, title, area of expertise, or college/school/department in the Experts Database at WVU Today.





Filters close

Showing results

110 of 2453
Released: 2-Jul-2020 3:10 PM EDT
Researchers outline adapted health communications principles for the COVID-19 pandemic
CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy

The COVID-19 pandemic has introduced unique challenges for public health practitioners and health communicators that warrant an expansion of existing health communication principles to take into consideration.

Released: 2-Jul-2020 1:40 PM EDT
Collectivism drives efforts to reduce the spread of COVID-19
University of Kent

Research from the University of Kent has found that people who adopt a collectivist mindset are more likely to comply with social distancing and hygiene practices to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Released: 2-Jul-2020 12:30 PM EDT
Tiny mineral particles are better vehicles for promising gene therapy
University of Wisconsin-Madison

University of Wisconsin–Madison researchers have developed a safer and more efficient way to deliver a promising new method for treating cancer and liver disorders and for vaccination — including a COVID-19 vaccine from Moderna Therapeutics that has advanced to clinical trials with humans.

Newswise: Newer variant of COVID-19–causing virus dominates global infections
Released: 2-Jul-2020 12:10 PM EDT
Newer variant of COVID-19–causing virus dominates global infections
Los Alamos National Laboratory

Research out today in the journal Cell shows that a specific change in the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus virus genome, previously associated with increased viral transmission and the spread of COVID-19, is more infectious in cell culture.

Newswise: From Wuhan to San Diego—How a mutation on the novel coronavirus has come to dominate the globe
Released: 2-Jul-2020 12:05 PM EDT
From Wuhan to San Diego—How a mutation on the novel coronavirus has come to dominate the globe
La Jolla Institute for Immunology

Two variants of the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2), called G614 and D614, were circulating in mid-March. A new study shows that the G version of the virus has come to dominate cases around the world. They report that this mutation does not make the virus more deadly, but it does help the virus copy itself, resulting in a higher viral load, or "titer," in patients.

Released: 2-Jul-2020 11:50 AM EDT
New Study Explains Potential Causes for “Happy Hypoxia” Condition in COVID-19 Patients
Loyola Medicine

A new research study provides possible explanations for COVID-19 patients who present with extremely low, otherwise life-threatening levels of oxygen, but no signs of dyspnea (difficulty breathing). This new understanding of the condition, known as silent hypoxemia or “happy hypoxia,” could prevent unnecessary intubation and ventilation in patients during the current and expected second wave of coronavirus.

Released: 2-Jul-2020 10:15 AM EDT
Stemming the Spread of Misinformation on Social Media
Association for Psychological Science

New research reported in the journal Psychological Science finds that priming people to think about accuracy could make them more discerning in what they subsequently share on social media.

29-Jun-2020 9:00 AM EDT
Coronavirus damages the endocrine system
Endocrine Society

People with endocrine disorders may see their condition worsen as a result of COVID-19, according to a new review published in the Journal of the Endocrine Society.

Released: 2-Jul-2020 8:50 AM EDT
Learn from the pandemic to prevent environmental catastrophe, scientists argue
University of Cambridge

• COVID-19 is comparable to climate and extinction emergencies, say scientists from the UK and US – all share features such as lagged impacts, feedback loops, and complex dynamics. • Delayed action in the pandemic cost lives and economic growth, just as it will with environmental crises – but on a scale “too grave to contemplate”.

Showing results

110 of 2453