ARLINGTON, VA – As the food industry association—representing food retailers and wholesalers, and the suppliers of the food and consumer products they sell—FMI strongly supports proposed liability relief protections proposed by Sens. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and John Cornyn (R-TX). 

FMI President and CEO Leslie G. Sarasin said: 

“Nine in ten voters agree that grocery store workers (93%), agricultural and food production workers (90%) and farm workers (89%) are essential amidst the coronavirus pandemic, according to a new survey performed by Morning Consult for the International Dairy Foods Association. From the first day of the COVID-19 emergency, the food industry workforce has adjusted in order to  keep grocery shelves stocked with necessary products, meet new customer demands, sanitize stores, transport food through the supply chain and make products, thus ensuring communities across this country have access to safe, nutritious food and other essential supplies. 

“The pandemic has created unprecedented operating conditions and the food industry has evolved to implement new and often changing guidance in numerous areas, including social distancing, face coverings and enhanced cleaning and sanitation protocols. Our industry’s status as critical infrastructure poses special responsibility that the industry has embraced; it should not also carry with it the extraordinary economic risks that would result from the actions by those looking to exploit this crisis. We need liability protection that acknowledges the extraordinary efforts during this national emergency of food industry workers and the companies that employ them. 

“Liability relief is essential. The food industry calls on Congress to pass essential liability protections in the next COVID-19 response bill.”

A list of current priority legislative policies for the food industry related to the COVID-19 pandemic can be accessed here