University of Maryland Extension
Extension is open!
We remain committed to our core missions and are working to move even more resources online and through innovative formats. Contact your local Extension office or Submit a question to an Extension Agent. Connect with us through Facebook, the Maryland Risk Management Education Blog, the Agronomy News Blog, and through online events.
COVID-19 Resources for Farmers
Statewide Agriculture Resources
Maryland Department of Agriculture
Maryland Business Relief Wizard - A great online tool to find the right resources for your business
Resources for Farms
COVID-19 Farm Resource Videos
Marketing: Surviving the Bounce - Ginger Myers, Marketing Specialist, UME
Preparing the Farm - Sarah Potts, Beef and Dairy Specialist, UME
Paycheck Protection Program - Sarah Everhart, Agriculture Law, UMD Carey School of Law
Reducing Stress and Building Resiliency - Jesse Ketterman, Extension Educator, UME
Farm Worker Safety - Shannon Dill, Extension Educator, UME
Personal Protective Equipment - Jenny Rhodes, Extension Educator, UME
Farm Continuity of Business Plan - Shannon Dill, Extension Educator, UME
Paid Sick Leave - Sarah Everhart, Agriculture Law, UMD Carey School of Law
Force Majeure (Cancelled Contracts) - Paul Goeringer, Agriculture Law, UMD Agricultural and Resource Economics
Suggestions for Farms and Farm Workers
- Talk with your employees about coronavirus, how it spreads, and how to prevent getting infected.
- Print the CDC factsheets and posters. Post them in your workplace and employee housing facilities.
- Reach out to customers on new practices for sales and supplies – electronic, signage.
- Provide guidance to help employees clean and disinfect employer-provided housing, materials and vehicles. Follow up with employees and manage the process to be sure that this happens. Set up a regular weekly and daily schedule for cleaning.
- Clean and disinfect your workplace. The employee breakroom and bathroom are great places for the virus to be transmitted. Clean and disinfect any areas where employees congregate or routinely touch items such as cell phones, doorknobs and computer keyboards. Set up daily and weekly cleaning schedules.
- Provide cleaning supplies such as cleaning solutions, buckets, mops, brushes, etc for cleaning at work and for those living in employer-provided housing. CDC list of approved antimicrobial cleaning products.
- Review your sick leave policy. The first advice for people who are sick is to stay home except to get medical care. Do you provide paid sick leave for your employees? If you do not, will employees feel financially obligated to come to work even if they are sick? Employee rights under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.
- Communicate with employees that they should stay home if they are sick. Employees sometimes come to work believing they will face punishment or firing if they miss work. Be sure your employees understand that their health and that of their co-workers’ comes first. Communicate and make a plan to cover for sick employees. CDC provides posters in English and Spanish covering symptoms of novel coronavirus.
- Prepare your disaster contingency plan. What will you do if 50% of your employees become sick and unable to work? Are there neighboring farms who might be able to share resources in an emergency? Who will manage for a few weeks if you or another key manager are unable to leave your house or are hospitalized?
- Create a Business of Continuity Plan
- Essential Agricultural Services Work Permits: Farm Workers and Independent Contractors
- This is a stressful time for everyone. Practicing self care and stress management are very important. There are a number of resources on University of Maryland Extension's Farm Stress Management page.
- Frequently asked questions for farmers market managers - MDA Full Document
- Check with the County Health Departments for Permits and Regulations
- National Farmers Market Coalition list share
- Guidance for AgriTourism Operations
- Guidance for Pick Your Own Operations
- Guidance for Farmers Markets
- Accepting SNAP/EBT and WIC Payments as a Farmer