KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Missouri fruit and vegetable growers can meet training requirements of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule at a Feb. 21 workshop in Mount Vernon.
Farms subject to the FSMA Produce Safety Rule must have at least one supervisor who has successfully completed specific training requirements, said Londa Nwadike, food safety specialist with University of Missouri Extension and Kansas State Research and Extension. FSMA includes standards related to water quality, use of manure and compost, and worker health and hygiene.
Advance registration is required. Participants will receive a training certificate and PSA Training Manual. Registration is only $20 thanks in part to funding and support from the Missouri Department of Agriculture. Lunch is provided. For questions, contact Nwadike at 816-482-5860 or Patrick Byers at 417-859-2044.
For details and registration, go to bit.ly/2NdFQlG.
The workshop will also be held Jan. 15 in Farmington and March 19 in Olathe, Kan. Go to extension.missouri.edu/n/4258 for more information.
Free microbial water testing
MU Extension is offering free microbial water testing to Missouri produce growers through a grant from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. The tests, which meet water testing requirements for FSMA and Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) certification, are conducted by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS). Sample bottles and forms are available from local public health departments, which can also arrange free overnight delivery of water samples to the DHSS lab. For more information, go to extension.missouri.edu/n/4256.
Cost-share available for GAP certification
Produce growers who have a USDA Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) audit between Nov. 1, 2019, and Oct. 31, 2021, are eligible for cost-share assistance. Qualifying farm operations would receive up to half the cost of their USDA GAP audit, to a maximum payment of $800.
Funding is from a USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant to MU Extension through the Missouri Department of Agriculture. For more information, contact Nwadike at NwadikeL@missouri.edu or 816-482-5860. Funds are available on a first-come, first-served basis until all available funding is used.
— Curt Wohleber, University of Missouri Extension
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