Experts discuss impact of coronavirus on local exports

Experts discuss impact of Coronavirus on local exports

POSEY CO., Ind. (WFIE) - The impact from the coronavirus is being felt by many across the world, including farmers here in Posey County.

“Were just waiting to understand and wrap our arms around how severe and how widespread and seismic this coronavirus and outbreak is,” Executive Director of Soy Transportation Coalition Mike Steenhoeck says.

The concern with the recent coronavirus outbreak is soybean exports could slow down or stop.

“The Posey County farmers, they depend on the exports in because we produce more than we can use locally,” says County Executive Director for the USDA Farm Service Agency Greg Knowles

It’s something the Soy Transportation Coalition is keeping a close eye on.

“It really just underscores how even some event that happens halfway around the world can really have a notable impact in a local community,” says Steenhoeck.

The Soy Transportation Coalition said southern Indiana is one of the biggest exporters of soybeans to China and they are waiting to see how much of an impact the Coronavirus will have, but so far, they say, it isn’t looking good.

“We’re going to see more and more of that impact at the local level because so much of the profitability of the local soybean farmer is a function of how prolific the customer is internationally,” Steenhoeck says.

It's a question, experts say, only time will answer.

“When you have something that’s problematic and a big question mark like the coronavirus, we rightfully take note of that and it is a source of concern,” said Steenhoeck.

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