The on-farm GAPs food safety team at the University of Minnesota works with Minnesota’s produce farmers to help them develop and implement on-farm food safety plans and prepare for GAPs audits. We provide education, outreach and technical support to fruit and vegetable growers through GAP workshops and mock audits, research relating to GAPs, especially as they impact small growers and immigrant and minority growers, and communication and collaboration with many agricultural partner organizations and government entities to help promote information-sharing regarding GAPs and farm safety.
Another Comment Period Coming! Proposed Rule on Standards for Produce Safety
Yes….ANOTHER COMMENT PERIOD on the PRODUCE SAFETY RULE is COMING! You can comment again on the provisions that include water quality standards and testing, standards for using raw manure and compost, certain provisions affecting mixed-use facilities, and procedures for withdrawing the qualified exemption for certain farms. Probably due to all of your GREAT comments the first time!
The comment period will be reopened after the FDA has completed their initial review of over 17,000 comments submitted during the first open comment period.
We will post here, on our Facebook page and on SUSTAG when the proposed rule has been re-released including information about where and how to comment.
Proposed Rule-at-a-Glance and Decision Tree for Exemptions/Exclusions. National GAPs Collaborators Holyer, LaBorde, Nickerson, Bihn, Castro, and Brooks organized crucial information into an easy to read document (pdf) FSMA-Decision-Tree-1.1_Feb_15_2013
On-line GAPs course
The next GAPs Online Produce Safety Course from Cornell University will be offered beginning Feb 5-25, 2014. The cost is $190 per participant. When registering for the course you will be asked to enter a Group Number. Enter G000107 (those are all zeros). For more information read the GAPs registration information 2013 or go to www.ecornell.com/gaps or email Betsy Bihn at firstname.lastname@example.org. The next scheduled dates will be March 5-25, April 9-29, and May 7-27.
How to make a Handwashing Station for less than $20
A very popular link and download. Full color and pictures describing how to build a simple handwashing station for your field or farm. Handwashing Station Instructions (pdf)
Pesticide Education Materials for Hmong Growers
This UMASH-funded pilot project used in-person, hands-on teaching techniques to share vital pesticide safety information with Hmong-American farmers. Education focused on:
- The use of personal protective equipment
- Proper measuring and mixing of agricultural pesticides
- Reading labels and following label directions
- Determining timing and dosage of common farm pesticides
The PPE poster was created with input from the Hmong-American farmers. The farmers prefer a poster-sized visual reminder that can be hung in their packing shed, garage, or other work area. They requested simple English words and phrasing. The model in the poster is one of the project participants. The 11×17″ poster can be downloaded here: Poster.