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Showing posts from November, 2019

E. coli and romaine in the news... again

Update 11/26/19: Almost exactly 1 one year ago to this date, just days before Thanksgiving, the nation was reeling from a large, multi-state outbreak of  E.coli  associated linked to romaine lettuce grown in central and northern CA.  Sound familiar? Once again t here is another outbreak of  E. coli  and romaine lettuce, this time traced back to the Salinas, CA  area. At least 40 people have reported illnesses after eating romaine from this area, including 1 in Minnesota. It is too early to determine the source of the contamination, but genetic analysis indicates that the strains are similar to previous outbreaks. The FDA has issued the following warning on Nov 22, 2019: Consumers should not eat romaine lettuce harvested from Salinas, California. Additionally, consumers should not eat products identified in the  recall  announced by the USDA on November 21, 2019. Consumers are urged to review their packaging to determine if the product was grown in Salinas. If it came fro

Register now for upcoming FSMA Produce Safety Rule grower training courses

Do you grow fruits and vegetables? Do you want to improve the shelf life, safety and quality of your produce? Registration is open for the winter FSMA Produce Safety Rule grower trainings. Take a look at the upcoming schedule and register soon,  as many of these trainings may fill to capacity.  If your farm is not excluded or exempt from the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule, at least one supervisor or responsible party from your farm must complete a training that uses FDA-recognized curriculum or equivalent. ( Read more here to learn whether or not your farm is covered by the Produce Safety Rule.) The courses offered here will satisfy this requirement. Course topics include produce safety regulatory requirements and best practices related to worker health and hygiene, crop inputs (soil amendments), domestic and wild animals, water use and testing for pre- and post-harvest operations, such as irrigation and washing. These dynamic courses will be c

New video helps produce farmers understand the FSMA Produce Safety Rule

Do you have questions about the the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule and how the new regulations might affect you and your produce farm? The UMN Extension On-Farm Food Safety Program has created a new video FSMA Produce Safety Rule: How does it apply to my farm? to help guide you through this new regulation that applies to some produce farmers in the state. This topic can be complex, and there are few other national resources that provide a succinct yet accurate overview of the rule and who and what it covers. So we made one! In 7 minutes this video will walk you through the basics of the FSMA Produce Safety Rule and provide an overview of the regulations. You’ll be guided through the process of determining if your farm is not covered, qualified exempt, or fully covered by the rule; and you’ll find out what those categories mean. Finally, you’ll learn about the next steps to take depending on which category your farm falls under. You’ll find links to valuab