Produce Safety: Producers

On-farm, Risk-based Food Safety Principles Resources


Enhancing the Safety of Locally Grown Produce
These excellent resources were developed by Virginia Tech, Clemson, and University of Georgia.  They provide a great starting point for better understanding on risks, with a focus on specific various routes of contamination.  See also other Producer Resources subpages for additional related resources.

Fresh Produce Food Safety Risk Assessment
This 3½ minute video provides a brief overview of risks on farm and is a simple introduction to this topic.

Food Safety Begins on the Farm: A Grower Self Assessment of Food Safety Risks
The excellent resource is designed to guide growers through the process of identifying risks particular to their operation, developing appropriate solutions, implementing good agricultural practices and developing a farm food safety plan. This document has 21 sections allowing growers to evaluate many different parts of their operation including harvest sanitation, worker hygiene, wild animals, water use, farm biosecurity, and crisis management. Each section contains worksheets so that growers can document their progress and plan for GAPs implementation.  Can be purchased or downloaded.

Greenhouse GAPs
This video is an excellent introduction to understanding the risks and best practices that can be put into place in a greenhouse set-up. Filmed at GAP-certified Four Oaks Farm Greenhouse in Franklin, VA, and at Farm to Table Market at Greenbriar Nursery, Roanoke, VA, this video showcases Jerry and Joyce Conner’s efforts to incorporate a risk-based approach.

Guide to Identifying Food Safety Hazards in Greenhouse Systems (HORT-254NP)
A factsheet providing a checklist of questions targeting possible risks at pre-plant, production, harvest, and post-harvest stages in greenhouse systems.  Excellent resource for conducting an on-farm risk assessment with growers.

National Good Agricultural Practices Program Decision Trees
These tools are an excellent guide for helping identify on-farm food safety risks and practices that can reduce those risks. The trees are definitely a great first step in any on-farm food safety plan writing and preparing for the GAP certification process.

NCAT's ATTRA Farm-Based Food Safety Video Series
A set if six videos showing how some farmers are approaching on-farm food safety.  Includes an overview to food safety, recordkeeping, hand washing, water testing, field and harvest procedures, and packing shed set up and wash procedures.

FAQ On Farm Food Safety