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Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training Course

C&T Smith, LP in conjunction with U of I Extension Kankakee and Pembroke Farming Family presents the international AFDO (Affiliated Food and Drug Officials) FDA/USDA certified Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training. The training will be held in Pembroke, Illinois, the oldest existing free African farming community in the United States established in 1830. Yes, during African American History month February 7th. The training is 8:30-4 p.m. with refreshments, lunch and snacks served. Participants will earn the PSA Grower Certificate along with accompanying electronic and hardcopy material to develop GAPS/FSMA compliant record keeping. This is important for growers, manufacturers, policy authors, and purchase decision makers. This certification is the standard for local, national, and international food trade concerning human and animal consumption. There will be an optional second day training at the same location, February 8th that will live coach food safety plan development.

Dates: Thursday, February 7, 2019 – 8:30 am to 4:00 pm (PSA Training) & Friday, February 8, 2019 – 8:30 am to 2:00 pm (Food Safety Plan Writing)

Location: Pembroke Public Library, 13130 East Central, Hopkins Park, IL 60958

Hosts: University of Illinois Extension; Pembroke Family Farms (PFF) and C&T Smith, LP

Who Should Attend

Fruit and vegetable growers and others interested in learning about produce safety, the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule, Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs), and co-management of natural resources and food safety.  The PSA Grower Training 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

The course will provide a foundation of Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) 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; 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

*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 (AFDO) 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 their trainer at the end of the course. 

Cost to Attend

Total cost to attend the PSA Grower Training Course is $145. The cost will include PSA Grower Training Manuals ($50) and a Certificate of Course Attendance from AFDO ($35).  Other expenses will be for meals, beverages and room rental.