PRESS REVIEW - APRIL 10/16, 2020


Farmers are essential but they are not protected

2.5 million farmers in the United States are considered to be essential workers, therefore exempt from the restrictions that apply to maintaining the country's food supply. Yet at a time when social distancing and careful sanitization against coronavirus exposure are needed, little has been done to protect farm workers. 

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Reducing wildlife trafficking to stop the rise in pandemics

The subject is being discussed in Europe, one of the world’s hot spots for the illegal wildlife trade. Members of the European Parliament and some environmental groups are calling for stricter rules on the trade in exotic animals within the EU, given that the situations in Europe and China are much more similar than one might imagine. 

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Voice of America/AllAfrica

Covid-19 and locusts. A new threat for East Africa

FAO officials say a new wave of locusts - which already devastated crops in parts of Africa earlier this year - is beginning to affect rural areas of East Africa. Farmers trying to stem the problem are however threatened by the virus that is affecting the region. 

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The Guardian

Too many infected workers in the US food supply chain

A major pork manufacturing plant in South Dakota has closed indefinitely after more than 200 of its employees contracted Covid-19. The Smithfield company, whose manufacturing hub accounts for up to 5 percent of US pork production, supplies 130 million portions of food per week and employs 3,700 people. 

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The Independent

WHO calls for wet markets to be closed

The World Health Organization is urging countries around the world to close so-called wet markets, as they are environments in which humans come into close contact with wild animals, which are potential carriers of pathogenic agents. This follows the reopening of markets in Wuhan, among the cities most affected by the epidemic. According to the WHO, these markets pose a real danger as pathogens can spread easily and quickly from animals to humans. 

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Amazon provides the cloud for Coronavirus diagnostics

In March, Amazon Web Service announced a global diagnostics initiative, offering initial funding of $ 20 million in credits for its cloud, as technical support for people working in research and development of diagnostic tools for Coronavirus. The program is supported by a group of scientists and public health experts, including Steve Davis, co-chair of the World Health Organization's digital health technology advisory group.  

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