Impacts of COVID-19 on the food supply chain for arable crops in Latvia

Ilze Upite (Coresponding Author), Dina Bite, Irina Pilvere, Aleksejs Nipers

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The COVID-19 pandemic has caused unprecedented stress to food supply chains, pointing to weaknesses in the labour, processing, transport and logistics spheres, as well as significant changes in demand. Food supply chains have shown considerable resilience in the face of such stress. Monitoring of the food sector during the COVID-19 pandemic indicates that the effects of COVID-19 on food supply, demand and access are interlinked processes and have a complex impact on food systems. In addition, high-value food supply chains in developed countries are even more complex, so countries need to respond quickly to restore them and also develop mechanisms that balance business and public interests and protect farmers and food business workers during future potential pandemic crises. The research aims to identify the main demand and supply side factors that affect the resilience of local and global food supply chains during the COVID-19 crisis, as well as assess the resilience of the supply chain for arable crops during the COVID-19 crisis in Latvia, identifying the main risk factors. The research found that arable crop farmers were relatively less affected by the COVID-19 crisis than other agricultural employees. The impact of the crisis was larger on the crop processing industry than on the other industries, and the main risk factors related to changes in demand and the industry’s dependence on imported raw materials and the successful operation of export markets. Based on an in-depth risk analysis, the research developed recommendations for policy makers and actors in the agri-food chain that would improve the resilience of local (domestic) participants of the arable crop food supply chain in Latvia.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-60
Number of pages13
JournalRural Sustainability Research
Issue number342
Publication statusPublished - 13 Oct 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • food supply chain
  • resilience
  • sustainability
  • COVID-19 pandemic risks
  • arable crops

Field of Science*

  • 4.1 Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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