Hello, everyone. I wanted to give you an update of where things stand in this highly unusual situation.
Like many of you, though we have crisis action plans for natural disasters, I admit I never imagined ourselves in this particular one.
Like so many around the country, and indeed the world, Calcot has been affected by circumstances beyond our control. However, we have been proactively dealing with the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Obviously, there are numerous business uncertainties arising from this international crisis, and we want you to know that we are and will remain focused on business continuity and minimizing disruptions as we have for every day of our 93 years in business.
Calcot has performed through the Great Depression, World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam and both Iraq Wars. We’ve performed through severe earthquakes, warehouse fires and devastating hurricanes. We will perform through this too.
As an agricultural cooperative owned by our grower-members, we have been exempted by the state of California and the federal government from the state’s “Shelter in Place” order, and for the foreseeable future, Calcot will continue to do what we do best: sell and ship cotton to our loyal partners. Both state and federal governments understand how vital agriculture is to our nation’s security and economy, which is why our business is exempted, as is yours. The cotton our members produce not only goes into clothing products, but numerous critical medical and industrial applications. Most importantly, cotton remains an integral part of the majority of our members’ operations. We know you rely upon us as the marketing and distribution arm of your cotton crop and your livelihood, and we’re going to do that to the best of our abilities given the circumstances.
We are striving for shipments to continue on schedule for all pending transactions from appropriate locations. Clearly, it’s not “business as usual,” but we’re striving to be as close to normal as we can in the circumstances.
Though our focus remains upon top-quality service to our loyal members and our mill customers, Calcot’s paramount priority is the health of our employees and their families, who support you and our customers day in and day out. Thus, we have initiated emergency plans and have taken numerous protective measures include suspending business travel, restricting visitors, sanitizing facilities and wherever possible working remotely and meeting virtually. Our headquarters is operating with minimal staff in the office, as employees are working primarily at home.
We have established a comprehensive response protocol for managing exposure risks and responding quickly at the local, state and national levels. We will continue to monitor the evolving situation and follow guidance from government authorities and health agencies. In the meantime, I expect all our employees to follow our emergency procedures to the letter.
As this is such a sudden development, with employees working remotely from their homes, some communication may lag as we refine our new procedures, and I ask that you bear with us and them. Calls may not be immediately returned, nor emails answered as quickly as you are accustomed. I apologize in advance for any inconvenience in these circumstances.
During these challenging times, I am confident in our ability to continue providing the high level of service and support you have come to expect. Our warehouse locations are up and running at this time and inventory is ready to ship.
Depending on how things progress, there may be some logistics challenges, but here’s the bottom line: even working remotely in a virtually unprecedented environment, Calcot is at the service of our members and our customers, as always.
Let me add my personal thank you for your efforts and understanding, especially during these precarious and uncertain times. We will weather this storm together (though six feet apart—and wash your hands!). Even with the uncertainty in the weeks and months ahead, Calcot will continue to take responsible, proactive steps to mitigate all risks while doing everything within our power to protect the health and interests of our employees, their treasured families, our members, valued customers, vendors, loyal partners and communities from the effects of this pandemic.
If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.
Stay safe and may you and yours be healthy and well.
Paul Bush
President and CEO
Calcot Ltd.