IFB, Extension, SIU offering growers free produce safety training

By Kay Shipman

Specialty growers may register for a free produce safety training course 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 18 at the Southern Illinois University (SIU) Agronomy Research Center, 3268 W. Pleasant Hill Road, Carbondale.

Registration will close when the limited seats are filled or Dec. 3, whichever comes first.

The Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) grower training course is one way to satisfy the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule requirement that at least one supervisor or responsible party for a farm must successfully complete food safety training at least equivalent to that received under standardized curriculum recognized as adequate by the Food and Drug Administration, according to Laurie George, University of Illinois Extension local food systems and small farms educator.

The course is being offered by U of I Extension in conjunction with SIU. Illinois Farm Bureau funding is covering the cost of registration, training materials and handouts, lunch and an Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO) certificate of completion.

Only after attending the entire course will participants be eligible for an AFDO certificate, verifying their completion of the training course. To receive an AFDO certificate, a participant must be present for the entire training and submit appropriate paperwork to the trainer at the end. Certificates are required for individuals to meet the FSMA Produce Rule.

To register online, click here. Email questions to George at ljgeorge@illinois.edu or Ruplal Choudhary, SIU food and bioprocess engineer, choudhry@siu.edu.

Content for this story was provided by FarmWeekNow.com.

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