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Colorado Produce Safety News

June 2021

Hello everyone! Summer weather is here. Hopefully you are finding ways to stay cool in this record breaking heat! Featured this month: schedule your on-farm readiness review, pre-harvest risk assessment resources, register for the Center for Produce Safety Annual Symposium, and information about the Produce Safety Rule change from CDA. 

|| Resources & Information ||

Improve your food safety practices with a produce safety farm visit!

Colorado State University Extension will come out to your farm to discuss your food safety practices. This on-farm readiness review is free of charge and confidential. 

If you have begun harvesting or will start soon, you should schedule an on-farm readiness review. This visit will provide an opportunity for you to have a discussion about your food safety practices and gain feedback on potential risks and what you can do to reduce those risks. 

Contact Cristy Dice with questions at Cristy.L.Dice@colostate.edu or 970-491-2942.

Request a visit

Pre-harvest risk assessment resources available

The Produce Safety Collaborative has developed a pre-harvest risk assessment checklist and decision tree that you can use to evaluate your growing areas before harvesting. 

Pre-harvest Risk Assessment Checklist

Harvest crews can use this resource to evaluate the area to be harvested and ensure that employees are trained on proper harvest food safety practices. 
PRINTABLE  PDF 
EDITABLE Word document

Pre-harvest Risk Assessment Decision Tree

Farmers can use this resource to train employees to identify potential contamination in harvest areas. It can also be printed and displayed in employee areas as a visual reminder to identify and not harvest contaminated produce. 
Download poster

Extension Legal Services Initiative Produce Safety Rule Legal Resources

The Northeast Center to Advance Food Safety (NECAFS) at the University of Vermont and the Center for Agriculture and Food Systems at Vermont Law School have created resources exploring key legal questions associated with the FSMA Produce Safety Rule, including:

|| Education & Training ||


Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training Course


Colorado does not have any courses scheduled until Fall 2021 but there are other virtual options available.

 

Produce Safety Alliance Online Training 

Offered by the Produce Safety Alliance as a three-week course that can be completed at your own pace. The online course is expected to take 15-30 hours for successful completion.
 
Find online training options

Remote Delivery Course 

The same course CSU Extension has been offering but taught by educators in other states in real time. Instructors use video conferencing software, such as Zoom or Webex. This is a temporary option that is being supported during the COVID-19 outbreak.
 
Find remote training options

Center for Produce Safety Annual Symposium

June -July 2021

 
Learn about the latest research occurring across the entire produce supply chain 

 

The Center for Produce Safety (CPS) is a collaborative partnership that leverages the combined expertise of industry, government and the scientific and academic communities to focus on providing research needed to continually enhance food safety. This level of collaboration allows CPS to fill the knowledge gaps on produce food safety and address both research priorities and immediate industry needs. CPS provides industry with credible, independent, science-based research that is applicable across the produce supply chain.
 

The annual Center for Produce Safety Research Symposium will be held June - July 2021. The event will be held virtually through a series of five-weekly live webinars between June 15 - July 13 from 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM Mountain. The agenda can be found here

Register for the Symposium

|| News ||




CDA Rule Change Comments for Produce Safety

Last fall Colorado successfully implemented a state Produce Safety program with the adoption of rules on Oct 30, 2020. The hard work and dedication of many stakeholders helped them draft rules that are consistent with the FSMA Produce Safety Rule and meet Colorado's produce industry needs. The rules adopted include two monetary thresholds, the three year rolling averages for Exempt status and Qualified Exempt limit, that adjust for inflation. Through the rules process the Produce Safety program is seeking to increase the thresholds to align with the inflation adjustments from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

The following are the proposed changes to the Rule:
  • Exemption from the Produce Safety Rule - Increasing the three year average of total produce sales from $28,075 to $28,561. This figure determines who needs to register with the Colorado Department of Agriculture Produce Safety Program.
  • Qualified Exemption from the Produce Safety Rule - Increasing the three year average of total food sales from $561,495 to $571,214. This figure determines who is eligible for the modified exemption under the Produce Safety Rule. Please note, farms that qualify for the modified exemption still need to register with CDA. 
If you would like to make comments regarding the Colorado Produce Safety Rule or the proposed changes, please use the form here for your comments. CDA is requesting that all comments be submitted by Friday June 18th for consideration. 

If you have questions please contact Duane Sinning at duane.sinning@state.co.us or 303-869-9284. 

Have a produce safety question?


Submit your question or contact Cristy Dice: Cristy.L.Dice@colostate.edu
Colorado’s Produce Safety Collaborative is part of the CSU Extension program and made up of 5 organizations collaborating to bring the most up-to-date produce safety information, training and education to Colorado’s produce growers and other industry stakeholders. 
 
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