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Meat companies finally feeling effects of drought

The meat industry may soon start to feel the effects of this past summer's drought, as farmers have had to spend more money on feeding their livestock.
The meat industry may soon start to feel the effects of this past summer's drought, as farmers have had to spend more money on feeding their livestock.

This blog has previously discussed how Mother Nature is infamous for being unpredictable, and as such, companies need to ensure they have an up-to-date business continuity plan. While severe weather – and the immediate impact it can have – is what often comes to mind, there are other situations that certain organizations need to be properly prepared for.

Over the summer, the nation suffered one of the worst droughts in its history. Many states experienced harshly arid conditions, and from that, several industries suffered. However, some of those effects are just beginning to be felt.

For example, according to The Wall Street Journal, meat companies will soon be met with the backlash from the drought. While many businesses experienced strong profits, the prices for steak and other products have risen, as farmers are spending more money on properly feeding their livestock.

"This is not an industry where you can just sit down with the buyer and say, 'My input costs have gone up, we're going to need higher prices', " Timothy Ramey, an analyst with D.A. Davidson & Co. told the news source.

Additionally, the U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that retail beef prices will increase 4 to 5 percent next year – half a percentage point above this year's jump.

Some companies, like Zacky Farms LLC, have already suffered. The California turkey and chicken producer filed for bankruptcy last month, citing soaring feeding costs.

While it's not possible to predict exactly how the weather will affect an industry, that's all the more reason why comprehensive risk management assessments can help businesses prepare as best they can. Business continuity consultants help companies look at their unique needs so a specialized plan can be created. That way, when setbacks occur, business resumption can be accelerated.