Livestock auctions take coronavirus precautions

The coronavirus has forced many livestock auction facilities to change how they do business.

President and CEO Curt Larson with Equity Cooperative Livestock Sales says, “So far, we’re making some adjustments. We’ve got a little bit of a learning curve but we’re getting through it.”

Larson tells Brownfield with agriculture designated as an essential industry, he needs to take precautions to lower the number of employees, buyers, and sellers getting sick. “We’ve done some segregation within our markets, trying to keep our different employee groups as separate as we can, trying to minimize their exposure to people delivering cattle, people loading cattle out, as well as the buyers that are there.”

Larson says that includes having no spectators at the sale, and no sellers in the barn or office for now. “A lot of them are used to dropping cattle off and, you know, grab breakfast or lunch at the cafe, watching their cattle sell, and taking their check home. We’re asking that they drop their cattle off and then depart the facility.”

Larson says Equity, like the packers, is also concerned about labor going forward as they try to gauge how many will be out sick or taking care of their families during the coronavirus outbreak.

Equity Cooperative Livestock Sales is using additional precautions during the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak. Details are on their website, here.

AudioEquity’s Curt Larson discusses COVID-19 precautions at the sales barns and Wednesday’s cattle market with Brownfield’s Larry Lee

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