Food supply in Indonesia may be put at risk during the coronavirus pandemic as farmers might be accessible to work the country’s rice fields while the government might also find it hard to import other staple food as exporting countries withhold supplies for domestic use, a local economic think tank has warned.

Dhenny Yuartha Junifta, a researcher at the Institute of Economic and Financial Development (Indef), said the pandemic will disrupt several aspects of the agriculture industry and eventually lead to decreased productivity.

 

One major impact is a fall in the number of farmworkers during the pandemic. This, combined with strict social restriction, will likely lead to lower harvests this year.

 

“Several studies have predicted up to a 4 percent reduction in agricultural labor during this pandemic,” Dhenny said in a teleconference.

 

“March to April is the first [rice] harvest season of the year. There will be major disruptions due to the [social] restrictions,” Denny said.

 

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