The Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Safe Produce Program will host four Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training course events starting in November and concluding in April 2024. The training events provide an opportunity for commercial fruit and vegetable growers, home produce gardeners, and other produce enthusiasts to learn and understand produce safety as defined in the Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Safety Rule and Good Agricultural Practices standards.
PSA Grower Training course events are:
- Nov. 16 – In-person, Iowa City.
- Jan. 17, 2024 – Remote virtual.
- Feb. 28, 2024 – In-person, location TBD.
- April 3, 2024 – Remote virtual.
Additional information and registration links are available on the Iowa State University Safe Produce website in the Events tab.
Instructional Content and Requirements
Each PSA Grower Training course event outlines and details FSMA Produce Safety Rule and GAP key requirements in the following instructional 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.
PSA instructional modules are taught by PSA qualified ISU Extension and Outreach specialists and consist of approximately seven hours of instruction including time for questions and discussion.
PSA Grower Training course requirements are that attendees must be present during all instructional modules and attendees must possess a PSA Grower Training manual during module instruction. The manual is included in the course registration fee. Exceptions may include two growers/employees from the same farm/company may share a manual and attend the training event together for a single registration fee.
For commercial fruit and vegetable growers, the PSA Grower Training course satisfies the FSMA Produce Safety Rule requirement that “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,” outlined in §112.22(c).
Home produce gardeners and produce enthusiasts will acquire the produce safety knowledge and practices to assure fruits and vegetables grown and harvested in their garden are safe for human consumption.
PSA Grower Training course event attendees will be eligible to receive an Association of Food and Drug Officials certificate verifying course completion. To receive an AFDO certificate, the PSA Grower Training course lead trainer will require attendees to complete and submit necessary forms at course completion.
The PSA Grower Training course event registration fee is $20 USD for Iowa growers and residents and $120 USD for out-of-state growers. The fee cost includes course attendance, PSA Grower Training manual and AFDO certificate.
Online registration for a PSA Grower Training course event can be found on the Iowa State University Safe Produce website in the Events tab. Select a preferred event and complete the online registration form and registration fee paid with a credit card.
United States Postal Service mail registration for a PSA Grower Training course event can be requested through email address IowaFSMA@iastate.edu or call 515-294-2552. PSA Grower Training course event information and a paper registration form will be mailed to you and registration fee paid by a financial institution check or money order.
This project is funded by the State and Territory Cooperative Agreement to Enhance Produce Safety in Preparation of Implementation of FDA’s Rule: Standards for the Growing, Harvesting, Packing, and Holding of Produce for Human Consumption, through FDA grant 1U18FD005810-01 (CFDA #93.102-Food and Drug Administration Research).