Fruit & Vegetable Magazine

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Cornell, U.S. gov launch produce safety alliance


November 22, 2010
By Fruit & Vegetable

Topics

November 17, 2010, Ithaca,
NY – A new public-private organization based at Cornell University is being
created to help produce growers and packagers promote safety and prepare for
future federal safety regulations.

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}p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal { margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 16pt; font-family: Times; }div.Section1 { page: Section1; }November 17, 2010, Ithaca,
NY – A new public-private organization based at Cornell University is being
created to help produce growers and packagers promote safety and prepare for
future federal safety regulations.

Cornell,
along with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Department of
Agriculture’s
Agricultural Marketing Service announced the creation of the
Produce Safety Alliance.

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The
three-year, $1.15 million partnership is funded by the FDA and USDA, and will
be housed at Cornell through a grant from the Agricultural Marketing Service.
Officials said the move will extend Cornell’s national Good Agricultural
Practices program
, which has been a leader in the development of materials on
GAPs and in its dissemination of food safety knowledge to the agricultural
community.

Key
elements of the Produce Safety Alliance’s work will include:

  • Developing
    a standardized, multi-format and multi-lingual education program on good
    agricultural practices.
  • Creating
    an information bank of up-to-date scientific and technical data related to
    on-farm and packinghouse produce safety; eventually including the FDA’s
    proposed produce safety rule.
  • Launching
    a website to make the alliance’s work and information readily accessible.
  • Establishing
    a network of educational collaborators.

In
2011, the FDA is expected to issue a proposed rule on the safe production,
harvesting and packing of produce.

The
alliance is aimed at giving produce growers and packers training and
educational materials so they can learn about food safety best practices and
future regulatory requirements. In addition to Cornell, the FDA, and the
Agricultural Marketing Service, the alliance will have representatives from the
Association of Food and Drug Officials, the National Association of State
Departments of Agriculture
, land grant universities, growers and shippers,
produce trade organizations, and the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation
Service
.