There’s lots of news these days about shutdowns of about everything in Iowa and around the country because of the pandemic. First it was schools, then came courthouses and other of­­ficial buildings, and finally the lights went out at dine-in bars and restaurants. 

Just looking around my neighborhood, it’s really hard to find any businesses that are open. But it’s a different story in the countryside.

Sure, farmers are taking precautions like all Americans. But they are also getting things done. 

That means continuing to feed and care for livestock, especially making sure that newborn spring calves get off to a good start. It also means getting ready to plant this year’s corn and soybean crops. 

March is the month for making sure seed and other inputs are in place, doing maintenance on planters and setting up schedules. 

Farmers are also stepping up their efforts to supply consumers in their own communities with home-grown meats, milk and eggs.  My social media feeds are full of farmers making extra efforts to care for senior citizens and other vulnerable people in their own communities.

As the threat of a widespread coronavirus outbreak looms, Americans are worried about a lot of things. But having enough food should not be one of them, thanks to the efforts of farmers, along with the work of people who process, pack and transport agricultural products.

Producing wholesome, abundant and affordable food is just what farmers do, no matter the circumstances.