Russell County farmer moving along amid pandemic

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RUSSELL COUNTY, Ala. (WRBL) – COVID-19 caused havoc on many farms but one farmer was able to keep things moving right along during the pandemic.

When the COVID-19 pandemic first started last March, cattle farm owner Bill Lowery was concerned due to the unknowns. Lowery told News 3 farming is not a business you can start and stop.

“It was so many unknowns about it, farmers have a big responsibility to keep their business going. Because you can’t stop and start in farming business, you have to be a farmer,” Lowery said.

The logistics of getting meat to grocery stores were extremely difficult during last year’s pandemic. People across the United States were buying meat left and right, causing grocery store shelves to become empty.

Once the stay at home orders were put in place, it made it harder for Lowery to sell his cattle.

“It had an adverse effect on us because it affects people’s ability to purchase meat, therefore it affected our ability to sell meat,” Lowery said.

As time progressed, Lowery realized COVID-19 was not going to have as huge an impact on his farm. For cattle farmers like Lowery, sales of their cattle fluctuate throughout the year. Lowery sells his cattle to consumers who finish the process of cattle slaughtering.

Lowery said farmers have a huge responsibility to provide food for those in the United States.

“When you look at the big picture it’s daunting, because it’s so much unrest and uneasiness. Farmers are resilient people, were only 1% of the population. We produce food for this country and the world, food and fiber, we have a big responsibility,” Lowery said.

Lowery said farming is a hard business, he only gets paid once a year and most farmers don’t last long in this business.

“The ones that are left farming are the ones who have been able to withstand all these variations. Like COVID, drought, high oil prices… all those things affect us a lot more than COVID did,” Lowery said.

Lowery is raising a heard of cattle now and plans on selling them this fall.

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