Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs)

Lifestyle
December 7, 2015

In 2011, the passage of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce rule proposed new regulations pertaining to fresh produce production. As of November 2015, the proposed rules have now become law. As a grower/producer of fresh fruit and vegetables, how does that affect you? Food safety begins on the farm and the responsibility of growing and harvesting safe food is more important today than it has ever been. You need to be concerned about food safety if you are selling from your farm, at local farmer’s markets or other markets. How soon you will need to comply will depend on a number of factors.

Topics of this workshop will include the new rules and regulations on produce safety risk factors and impacts; post-harvest produce handling; water quality, testing, and sanitation choices; soil and manure management; worker health and hygiene; creating a food safety plan; and gearing up for a third-party audit.

Workshops will be held on Mondays, January 11, 18, 25, and February 1 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. You may attend the workshops from your home. You will need a computer with high-speed internet access and a way to listen to the presentation via your computer. Each registered participant will be sent webinar instructions, handouts, and a GAPs manual prior to the first webinar. There will be a $20.00 fee per participant, and pre-registration along with pre-payment is required by January 4, 2016.

Please register online at http://web.extension.illinois.edu/gkw. With this registration opportunity, you may use a credit card and immediately pay and confirm your registration. Online, you may choose to pay by check which will tentatively register you until your check is received in our office. Additionally, you may call the office at 815/933-8337 to register by credit card or as always, stop by the office to register with cash, check or credit card.

For more information, contact James Theuri, jtheu50@illinois.edu, University of Illinois Extension Educator at the Kankakee County office (815) 933-8337 or Laurie George, ljgeorge@illinois.edu, Extension Educator at the Jefferson County Office (618) 242-0780.

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