Wisconsin Potato and Vegetable Growers Association

WPVGA Follows FSMA; Adjusts 2017 Food Safety Training Offerings

Changes are once again occurring in the food safety realm with new requirements under the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), and consequently, WPVGA is adjusting the training classes that will be offered in 2017 to accommodate.

Details around two new rules have come to light in recent months that correlate with FDA FSMA. They are Produce Safety and Preventive Controls.

Produce Safety Alliance (PSA)

To shed light on each, “the Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) is a collaboration between Cornell University, FDA and USDA to prepare fresh produce growers to meet the regulatory requirements” that are part of FSMA, according to the Produce Safety Alliance website, producesafetyalliance.cornell.edu.

The Produce Safety rule sets “standards for growing, harvesting, packing and holding of fruits and vegetables grown for human consumption” according to the Food and Drug Administration’s website fda.gov.

It has five key requirements:

  • Agricultural Water
  • Biological Soil Amendments
  • Sprouts (preventing contamination of)
  • Domesticated Wild Animals
  • Worker Training and Healthy and Hygiene

For further details on the Produce Safety rule, please visit: http://producesafetyalliance.cornell.edu/ or http://www.fda.gov/Food/GuidanceRegulation/FSMA/ucm334114.htm. Please note that according to the FDA’s site, potatoes are listed as an exempt commodity under the Produce Safety rule. This said, WPVGA will still be offering this class to growers who don’t pack or wash as a means of helping the industry stay proactive.

Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance (FSPCA)

According to the Illinois Institute of Technology, the Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance  (FSPCA) is “intended to ensure safe manufacturing/processing, packing and holding of food products for human consumption in the United States” (https://www.ifsh.iit.edu/fspca/fspca-preventive-controls-human-food).

The above-mentioned site also goes on to say that “the regulation requires that certain activities must be completed by a preventive controls qualified individual who has successfully completed training in the development and application of risk-based preventive controls.”

While potatoes are exempt under the Produce Safety rule, they are not exempt under Preventive Controls. Therefore, anyone in the potato industry who packs or washes must attend the Preventive Controls class, in addition to having an up-to-date HACCP certificate on file.

It’s important to understand that HACCP is a component of Preventive Controls, but one does not replace the other. Both are needed for the completion of a successful food safety audit. The final deadline for FSPCA to be implemented is January 2018.

To follow is the list of classes that WPVGA will be offering in 2017.

Produce Safety

  • 1 day (duration = 8 hours to complete training)
  • Suggested for any grower, especially those who only grow

Preventive Controls

  • 5 days (same person must attend all 2.5 days to receive certificate)
  • Required for anyone in the industry who packs or washes

HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point)

  • 2 days (same person must attend both 2 days to receive certificate)
  • Required for anyone in the industry who packs or washes

To reserve your space in one or more of the above classes, please contact Dana Rady at 715-623-7683 or [email protected] by December 16th.

Dates, locations and fees for each class will be determined once the number of attendees in each class is established.

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