Two Remote Produce Safety Rule Grower Training Courses Available
The implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act’s Produce Safety Rule (PSR) continues across California. PSR compliance mandates that every produce farm must have an employed individual who has completed a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved PSR Grower Training course. Normally, this course must be completed in person, but due to current shelter-in-place orders the FDA has temporarily approved PSR remote training options. If your operation has yet to meet this compliance regulation, the California Avocado Commission highly recommends you have an employee enroll in one of these courses.
Two remote courses are scheduled for May 14 and May 28. The deadline to register for the May 14 course is Thursday, May 7. The registration deadline for the May 28 course is May 21. The registration fee is $60. Visit the WIFSS website to register. After completing the course, participants will be eligible to receive a certificate from the Association of Food and Drug Officials that verifies they have completed the training course.
Both courses are offered through the Western Institute for Food Safety and Security (WIFSS) located at UC Davis. Each course includes 7 hours of instruction via Zoom. Attendees must have their web cam and audio operating during the entire course — from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. — in order to verify presence and participation. A required printed manual will be mailed to participants prior to the course.
David Goldenberg of WIFSS, Michele Jay-Russell of the Western Center for Food Safety and Donna Clements of the Produce Safety Alliance will lead the course. The topics to be covered include:
- The basics of microorganisms and where they may be found on the farm
- How to identify microbial risks and the practices that reduce risks
- How to write a farm food safety plan
- Requirements of the Produce Safety Rule and how to meet them
Since January 26, 2018, PSR compliance enforcement has been rolled out based on farm size starting with produce farms designated as “large” (those with annual sales greater than $500,000), then farms with $250,000 or more in annual sales, and then farms with $25,000 to $250,000 in annual sales.