Produce Safety Alliance Grower Trainings Scheduled for Fall 2017, Winter 2018

Food Safety Modernization Act and Good Agricultural Practices to be discussed in trainings

September 14, 2017, 3:35 pm | Ellen Johnsen

AMES, Iowa – Fruit and vegetable growers and others interested in learning about produce safety, the Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Safety Rule, Good Agricultural Practices, and co-management of natural resources and food safety should make plans to attend an upcoming Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training course.

Produce SafetyThis course is one way to satisfy the FSMA Produce Safety Rule requirement outlined in §112.22(c) that requires “At least one supervisor or responsible party for your farm must have successfully completed food safety training at least equivalent to that received under standardized curriculum recognized as adequate by the Food and Drug Administration.”

What to Expect at the PSA Grower Training Course

The trainers will spend approximately seven hours of instruction time covering content contained in these seven modules:

  • Introduction to Produce Safety
  • Worker Health, Hygiene and Training
  • Soil Amendments
  • Wildlife, Domesticated Animals and Land Use
  • Agricultural Water (Part I: Production Water; Part II: Postharvest Water)
  • Postharvest Handling and Sanitation
  • How to Develop a Farm Food Safety Plan

In addition to learning about produce safety best practices, key parts of the FSMA Produce Safety Rule requirements are outlined within each module. There will be time for questions and discussion, so participants should come prepared to share their experiences and produce safety questions.

Benefits of Attending

The course will provide a foundation of Good Agricultural Practices and co-management information, FSMA Produce Safety Rule requirements and details on how to develop a farm food safety plan. Individuals who participate in this course are expected to gain a basic understanding of

  • Microorganisms relevant to produce safety and where they may be found on the farm;
  • How to identify microbial risks, practices that reduce risks and how to begin implementing produce safety practices on the farm;
  • Parts of a farm food safety plan and how to begin writing one; and
  • Requirements in the FSMA Produce Safety Rule and how to meet them.

After attending the entire course, participants will be eligible to receive a certificate from the Association of Food and Drug Officials that verifies they have completed the training course. To receive an AFDO certificate, a participant must be present for the entire training and submit the appropriate paperwork to the trainer at the end of the course.

Cost and registration

The training is $20 for Iowa growers and $120 for out-of-state growers. Cost includes PSA manual, certificate of completion and lunch. Iowa State University Extension and Outreach faculty and specialists will lead the class.

Registration and payment can be completed through the Safe Produce website, To register and pay by check, email, or call 515-294-6773 to request a paper registration form.

2017-2018 Course Schedule

  • Nov. 2 - Webster County
  • Nov. 9 - Shelby County
  • Nov. 16 - Woodbury County
  • Dec. 7 - Winneshiek County
  • Jan. 11 - Warren County
  • Feb. 1 - Wapello County
  • Feb. 9 - Linn County
  • March 8 - O’Brien County
  • March 29 - Cerro Gordo County

A basic understanding of Good Agricultural Practices is recommended prior to attending the class. See the registration website for suggested materials to review before class. For more information about PSA Grower Training Courses, please visit the PSA website at

This project is funded by the State and Territory Cooperative Agreement to Enhance Produce Safety in Preparation of Implementation of FDA’s Rule: Standards for the Growing, Harvesting, Packing and Holding of Produce for Human Consumption, through FDA grant 1U18FD005810-01 (CFDA #93.102-Food and Drug Administration Research).

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