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March 3, 2017
New Educational Materials & Resources Available
Need more information on exemptions and exclusions to the Produce Safety Rule? This PowerPoint presentation provides additional detail to each one of the provisions § 112.1 - § 112.5, as well as a few teaching examples and information on the definitions of primary and secondary activity farms.
Post-harvest sanitation can become very confusing, especially when it comes to selecting a sanitizer appropriate for use on fruit and vegetable crops and food contact surfaces. This tool provides product and label information, as well as trade names and active ingredients. Video tutorial coming soon on how to navigate the tool!
The Subpart E - Agricultural Water requirements may be complicated, but fortunately, there are computer-based tools to help growers do these calculations. Unfortunately, not all growers use technology, so this long hand worksheet walks through the all of the math necessary to calculate the geometric mean and statistical threshold values from your Microbial Water Quality Profile (MWQP).
The topic of agricultural water testing, including the method used to enumerate E. coli, comes up at nearly every Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) Grower Training course and Train-the-Trainer course.  Recent statements by FDA and others show that many questions about agricultural water testing under the FSMA Produce Safety Rule remain unsettled.  This article is intended to clarify what is known about acceptable water testing methods currently outlined in the PSR.  It also includes GAPs recommendations for growers to help them decide how best to manage their water testing prior to the PSR compliance dates.
PSA to Host Soil Summit - March 28-29, 2017
The Produce Safety Alliance and the Institute for Food Safety at Cornell University will be hosting a Soil Summit on March 28-29, 2017 in Geneva, NY at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station (NYSAES). Registration is $100 and will be open until March 13, 2017.
 
Join us for an engaging 1.5 day Soil Summit including presentations and break out discussion about the benefits  and challenges of raw manure use relative to the safety of fresh fruit and vegetable production. Key goals for the summit include identifying barriers to using/producing compost while identifying management strategies, resources, and additional support necessary to support growers in minimizing food safety risks on the farm, especially when using raw manure. Additionally, produce growers, educators, and researchers will gain a better understanding of current FDA research and risk assessment efforts and the final FSMA Produce Safety Rule standards included in Subpart F - Biological Soil Amendments of Animal Origin and Human Waste. Come prepared to share your knowledge, thoughts, and innovative ideas!

Register by March 13, 2017 at: http://events.cals.cornell.edu/soilsummit2017
New Job Opportunity
Washington State University - School of Food Science
Food Safety Specialist - Assistant/Associate Professor
Visit www.wsujobs.com (Search Position #122570). For additional information on Washington State University, CAHNRS or SFS, visit http://cahnrs.wsu.edu/ and http://sfs.wsu.edu. Please contact Dr. Girish Ganjyal, Search Committee Chair, at girish.ganjyal@wsu.edu, 509-335-5613 with questions about this position.
Sister Alliance Updates
 

The Sprout Safety Alliance is hosting a Sprouter Training Course in Chicago on April 11-12 (see registration information below).  More training information can be found at the SSA Training webpage: https://www.ifsh.iit.edu/ssa/resources/ssa-training

 Please contact SSA at sproutalliance@iit.edu with any questions.


 

The Sprout Safety Alliance (SSA) is also hosting a FREE webinar on Monday, March 6, 2017 from 1-2 PM (CST) that features an overview of FDA's Draft Guidance for Industry: Compliance with and Recommendations for Implementation of the Standards for the Growing, Harvesting, Packing, and Holding of Produce for Human Consumption for Sprout Operations. 

Register Here

FDA Updates

More information about FSMA and Third Party Audits was recently posted on the FDA website. There is some particularly relevant information for the produce industry at the end of the article and shared below. 

Potential for Leveraging Audits in Produce Rule Compliance Strategies
"FDA envisions a broad, collaborative effort for achieving compliance with the produce rule. While audits are not required, FDA contemplates leveraging third-party audits as part of its overall compliance strategy. The agency intends to do this, in part, by building on current private audit activity and by working with the produce industry and other government and private partners to strengthen the rigor and reliability of private audits."

Stay in Touch!
Our general listserve reaches over 2,700 growers, industry members, regulatory agents, and educators in the United States and around the globe. Signing up for the listserve is  the best way to stay in touch with the PSA. To sign up, please visit our website at  producesafetyalliance.cornell.edu  or use the link included at the bottom of this e-mail message
 
As always, please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions, comments, or ideas. We love feedback, so let us know! Good, bad, or otherwise - our ears (and e-mail inboxes) are always open!
Gretchen L. Wall, M.S.

Produce Safety Alliance Coordinator 

Elizabeth A. Bihn, Ph.D.

Produce Safety Alliance Director 

Cornell University - Dept. of Food Science

110B Stocking Hall

Ithaca, NY 14853

Phone:  607.255.6806

Email: glw53@cornell.edu

Hedrick Hall - NYSAES
630 W. North Street
Geneva, NY 14456
Phone: 315.787.2625