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The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on the global food supply chain, both in the immediate and far-reaching disruption it caused in the spring and in the lasting changes emerging as large consumer countries such as the US begin to transition to a new normal. Consumers, for example, have moved dramatically toward online grocery shopping and direct-to-consumer food delivery.
For example, logistics providers are reporting a dramatic move by consumers toward online grocery shopping and direct-to-consumer (DTC) food delivery. Just four years ago, the Food Marketing Institute estimated online food and beverage sales would reach $100 billion by 2025.
At the beginning of 2020, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, FMI revised that figure to $143 billion. With so many consumers still staying home to prevent the spread of the disease, that figure is likely to head even higher. Even before COVID-19 struck, the perishables supply chain was undergoing significant shifts, driven by the ongoing US-China trade battle, the International Maritime Organization's low-sulfur fuel mandate, and tight supply for containers and other types of reefer equipment. As a tumultuous 2020 draws toward a close, this webcast will analyze the state of the cold chain, the impact COVID-19 has had, and what a post-COVID market might look like.