National Farm Safety and Health Week: COVID-19 Farm Safety
What is National Farm Safety and Health Week?
Agriculture is one of the most important industries in the United States, but also one of the most hazardous. Many injuries seen in agriculture can be prevented through proper training and education. The National Farm Safety and Health Week is led by the National Education Center for Agricultural Safety (NECAS) and has been recognized on the third week of September for many years. This week is used to promote the importance of health and safety on farms.
How has COVID-19 impacted farm safety?
Agriculture is an essential industry as it provides us with our food. For this reason, farmers and farmworkers have continued to work hard since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Farmers and farmworkers are often in close contact to one another at agricultural work sites. This close contact can increase the risk of spreading COVID-19 from worker to worker. Shared facilities and tools, common areas, community housing or group transportation can increase this risk. It is important that farmers and farm workers are properly trained on how to prevent the spread of COVID-19 amongst workers.
Where can I find educational resources for farmers and farmworkers?
Although this list is not exhaustive, it provides some great resources for farmers and farmworkers about COVID-19 safety.
- Best Practices for Agribusinesses
- Guidance for U-Pick Farms
- Produce Farms and Packinghouses
- Protecting Agricultural Workers from COVID-19
- Safe Housing Practices
The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) has created playlists of short video to teach farmworker safety practices to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Downloadable Factsheets (Hojas informativas descargables)
- Guidance for U-Pick Farms (Información para fincas “U-Pick”)
- Protecting Agricultural Workers from COVID-19 (Protegiendo a trabajadores agrícolas del COVID-19)
- Safe Housing Practices (Prácticas de seguridad de viviendas)
For additional UF/IFAS educational materials on COVID-19, please visit the UF/IFAS EDIS COVID-19 page. You will find pages with frequently asked questions, and information on topics such as good mask use or handwashing practices. There are also some additional UF/IFAS EDIS resources in Spanish, Haitian Creole, and Mandarin Chinese.
The Southeastern Coastal Center for Agricultural Health and Safety (SCCAHS) also has many educational resources on COVID-19 for farmers, farmworkers, and extension professionals.