Consumers want fresh food that is safe. Farmers should learn how to keep fruits and vegetables safe on their farms by following the guidelines for covered produce under the US Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule (PSR).
Farmers need to understand: how the PSR will impact them; if they are exempt from certain rules; the guidelines for growing covered or non-covered produce; and the necessary selling requirements for wholesalers, at farmers markets, or direct to consumers.
Mississippi growers of fresh fruits and vegetables that need information about PSR can find training resources and information about providing safe products through Mississippi State University Extension. There is training to fit every producer that also satisfies the training requirements for Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) certification.
Food Safety Courses offered for F&V Farmers
Produce Safety Rule Grower Training
Growers, packers, Extension agents, educators, industry suppliers and others interested in learning the requirements of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rules certification should enroll in a Produce Safety Rule Grower Training session. One way to satisfy the § 112.22(c) regulation, which requires that at least one supervisor or responsible party from a farm subject to the FSMA Produce Safety Rule, must have successfully completed a food safety training equivalent to that received under standardized curriculum recognized as adequate by the FDA. This curriculum fulfills that requirement. We encourage all farmers, FM vendors, and extension agents that work with F&V farmers to attend this one-day course. Participants that complete the course receive a certificate from the Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO).
Other related training and information
Acidified Canned Foods Training
There have been many outbreaks and deaths caused by improperly processed acidified canned foods. This happens frequently with products that are home-canned or products processed by someone that does not understand the dangers. We highly encourage this training course for people that can acidified foods, such as pickles, salsas, dessert sauces, pickled eggs, tomatoes or other acidified food products for sale in Mississippi Certified Farmers Markets (farmers markets that are certified by the Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce) or people involved in the Cottage Food Industry. Chefs, restaurant owners/employees, and retail operations may consider taking the course to enhance their food safety knowledge. This is a 3-hour course. Participants will receive a certificate of attendance.
General Food Safety Training for Farmers Markets’ vendors
This course that covers general food safety guidelines including personal hygiene, buyer requirements, product disposition for sale, products allowed and not allowed, and other general issues that can help minimize food safety problems at a farmers market. It is meant for FM vendors and managers, but others can attend. Some certified markets require this course. The course is about 1-hour long. Participants will receive a certificate of attendance.
If you are interested in any of the courses we offer, please fill out this pre-registration form and we will contact you in a couple of days.
For further questions, please contact the Extension experts located on the right side bar.