Selling Produce? Get Safety Certified

Does your farm grow vegetables for the wholesale or retail market? Did you know there is a food safety training requirement for farms that sell produce for the fresh market?

Your farm is exempt if the farm’s average annual value of produce sold during the previous 3-year period is less than $28,561. 

An upcoming online course will enable you or your employee to obtain training that complies with a Food Safety Modernization Act requirement that “at least one supervisor or responsible party for your farm must have successfully completed food and safety training at least equivalent to that received under standardized curriculum recognized as adequate by the Food and Drug Administration.”

The class meets virtually from 3:30-5:20 p.m. on Thursdays from Jan. 20-March 10.

The course will be led by experienced teacher and farmer, Valerie Dantoin Adamski, an instructor at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College in Green Bay.  She is joined by Mike Mosher, a produce safety outreach and education specialist from DATCP and by Wisconsin Farmer Union Regional Membership Coordinator Shawn Bartholomew.

In this class you will learn tips and the best practices in the following areas:

— employee health and hygiene, and training;
— clean water in your fields and pack shed;
— wildlife, domesticated animals and land use;
— clean soil, amendments and manure;
— post-harvest handling, sanitation and storage;
— and writing Standard Operating Procedures & Farm Food Safety Plans.

Enrollees will receive an Association of Food and Drug Officials certificate that satisfies the FSMA training requirement. The class also has an option for farms interested in completing the paperwork needed to become certified organic. 

The enrollment deadline is Jan. 14.  A free Grower Training Manual will be shipped to enrollees by DATCP. The $35 cost of the certificate from AFDO is covered by Wisconsin Farmers Union. The course itself costs $157.65. Your computer must have audio and video capability and you must be present at each weekly session to earn the certification.

For help enrolling, call or text Northeast Wisconsin Technical College at 1-888-385-6982 and use class #21762. Or register here: