Today’s quick hits, Oct. 20, 2020

Derecho caused $7.5 billion in damage: The August derecho in the Midwest was the costliest thunderstorm complex to hit the United States in at least four decades, causing $7.5 billion in damage. (The Weather Channel)

CFAP2 zooms to $6.1 billion: Iowa accounts for nearly $1 in every $10 of the $6.1 billion in CFAP2 payments since sign-up began on Sept. 21; $1.6 billion was disbursed on 107,253 applications in the past week. (USDA)

Bigger estate tax exemption needed: The Farm Bureau said “serious consideration should be given to eliminating estate taxes or at the very least making permanent” the $11 million exemption which was created in the 2017 tax-cut law. (AFBF)

Inequitable distribution of food boxes: In the early months of the Trump administration’s food-box giveaway program, contractors sent more boxes to 21 counties than there were residents, while food aid groups in many areas struggled to get deliveries at all. (The Counter)

Lockdown on the tomato farm: To lessen the chance of a coronavirus outbreak, a Virginia tomato grower put his guest workers on a lockdown with few opportunities to leave the farm, causing some workers to complain of a prison-like setting. (New York Times)

Smithfield chief to retire: Kenneth Sullivan will retire in early 2021 after five years as chief executive of Smithfield Foods and will be succeeded by Dennis Organ, now chief operating officer. (Smithfield)