Coronavirus Presents New Beginnings—One Year Later

While March 12, 2020 was the last time any of us saw our co-workers in person, it was it also the day of New Beginnings, an alternative “New Normal” way of doing things, for the better.

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It was a year ago this month that the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) was declared a global pandemic. It was this time last year when the entire nation shut down, when employees shifted to their makeshift home offices, when foodservice establishments pivoted to keep product moving and when every corner of every company had to move, and move fast, to keep supply chains afloat.

Looking back, I’d say, this industry did a pretty darn good job!

However, reminiscing about how the pandemic played out presents some bittersweet memories.

March 12, 2020 was the last time me and my entire staff were under the same roof, at an in-person tradeshow. It was the last time I used my office landline, thanks to Zoom and Teams. And, it was the last time I stepped foot in a grocery store and actually grocery shopped (say hello to curbside pickup).

But, it also was the day of New Beginnings, an alternative “New Normal” way of doing things.

It was a chance—a chance to shore up efficiencies, tidy up processes and recognize the people behind those resilient supply chains. It was the opportunity for our nation’s supply chains to figure things out and make day-to-day processes work differently, not because they wanted to, but because they had to.

Because “we can’t have another [Hurricane] Katrina or another 9/11 where it was back to business as usual,” says Justin Goldston, professor and coordinator of project and supply chain management at Penn State University, in a recent L.I.N.K. Live discussion.

The COVID-19 disruption forced companies to develop contingency plans for the current state of business, but also prepare for what’s still to come.

And, according to many industry experts, there is more still to come. (Check out Food Logistics' March 2021 issue, the cover story on “Mitigating Supply Chain Threats From the Ground Up”). CLICK HERE to subscribe now.

There will always be supply chain disruptions. There will always be supply chain challenges.

But, there will also always be New Beginnings.

Come mid-March, be sure to visit and check out our new digital series called COVID-19: One Year Later, where we share articles, blogs, videos, expert columns and a timeline of events detailing the events of COVID-19 to present day.

Here’s to New Beginnings…..

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Twitter: @MarinaMayer