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FARM JOURNAL POLL: NEARLY HALF OF FARMERS HAVE CONCERNS ABOUT SALES REPS BEING ON FARM
AgWeb.com reports:

That angst showed up in a recent Farm Journal COVID-19 Reintegration Survey.

Of 640 farmers and livestock producers surveyed, 45% say they have reservations about allowing sales reps back onto their farm.



For Dick Wittman, a family business consultant and farmer in rural Idaho, that number is surprising.

"It does surprise me, because I would say that this area wouldn't have that sentiment," he says. "I mean, there's always some of that sentiment, but I think the attitude in farming is that we're already socially distanced, and the normal suppliers that supply us don't interact with anybody else. I think that's a little bit of a fallacy."

The Farm Journal survey also found in order for input suppliers to be allowed back on the farm, 50% say social distancing would be required, and 18% want outside vendors to wear proper PPE. However, not everyone is voicing that concern about sales reps and non-employees coming on their farm. The survey found 36% say they're not concerned about having sales reps present.

Growing concerns or not, Wittman thinks navigating new business practices today may be permanent solution in agriculture.

"I think it's going to change your business models," says Wittman. "It's making people rethink how we can do business in the future. We don't need to have everybody interacting every day in an office."


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