MERCER — Penn State Extension is offering food safety training for producer growers at the Penn State Extension Mercer County office, 463 N. Perry Highway in Mercer from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Tuesday, Feb 21.

Fruit growers, vegetable growers, individuals required to satisfy the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA): Produce Safety Rule requirement outlined in Section 112.223©, individuals interested in learning about the FSMA, Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs), and co-management of natural resources and food safety — should attend this training.

The cost to attend has been reduced with support from the PA Department of Agriculture, to $30.

Topics covered include, introduction to best practices for safe produce; worker health and hygiene training; how to use soil amendments; wildlife, domesticated animals and land use; how to safely and properly use water for agriculture; proper postharvest handling and sanitation; FSMA Produce Safety Rule requirements and how to meet them; how to develop and follow a farm food safety plan; microorganisms relevant to safe produce and where they may be found on the farm; as well as how to identify microbial risks, practices that reduce risks, and how to begin implementing produce safety practices on the farm.

In addition to learning about produce safety best practices, key parts of the FSMA Produce Safety Rule requirements are outlined within each module. There will be time for questions and discussion and participants are asked to come prepared to share experiences and ask produce safety questions.

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After completing the course, participants will be eligible to receive a certificate from the Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO). To receive the AFDO certificate, a participant must be present for the entire training and submit the appropriate paperwork to their trainer at the end of the course.

For more information, contact Rick Kralj at (814) 849-7361 ext 502 or by e-mail at

To register, call 1-877-345-0691 and ask to attend the Mercer training.

Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences research and extension programs are funded in part by the Pennsylvania counties, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the US Department of Agriculture.

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