Produce Safety

Marketplace Projects

PI: Boyer, Co-PI: Ponder, Chase, Archibald, Chapman - NCSU, Harrison -UGA

Goal:The goal of this project is to assess microbial quality of fresh produce sold at farmers’ markets across VA and NC.  Using the data collected we will incorporate new information into our training curriculum.

Benefits: To further improve upon our current curriculum “Enhancing the safety of locally grown produce” with research-based data.

PI: Boyer, Co-PI: Chase, Eifert, Chapman – NCSU, Harrison – UGA, Gibson, Shoulders – U of Ark., Sirsat – U of Houston

Goal: The goal of the project is to equip farmers’ market vendors, managers, and consumers with both scientifically-based and practical behaviors.  A Farmers’ Market Tool-kit will be created and extension specialists, extension Agents, Farmers Market Associations and volunteers will be trained to use it. We hypothesize that a collaboration between key universities with input from stakeholders will result in the best materials developed for this audience. This project will allow us to improve upon the current curriculum, reach a larger audience and impact the public health of farmers’ market patrons.

Benefits: To provide an all-inclusive resource for farmers’ market vendors, managers, and consumers to find food safety related information.  This will help translated complex food safety training materials to the needs of the audience.

PI: Strawn, Co-PI: Rideout

Goal: The goal of the project is to determine the growth and survival of Salmonella and Listeria monocytogenes on Whole and Sliced Cucumbers held at ambient and refrigeration temperatures.

Benefits: To provide science-based recommendations for reducing foodborne pathogen contamination of cucumbers during postharvest handling, transportation, and retail display to the produce industry.

PI: Vallotton, Co-PIs: Archibald, Boyer, DuBois, & Vargo

Goal: In this project, the Fresh Produce Food Safety Team, in partnership with Virginia’s Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) and Local Food Hub (LFH), conducted a market assessment for food procurement requirements and expectations related to food safety assurances / certification in six market sectors: Farmers Markets, Schools (K-12), Restaurants, Retailers, Other institutions (hospitals, universities, elder care), Wholesale Distributors.

Benefits: The data was used to formulate recommendations for growers, market sector representatives, and decision makers for improving alignment between market sector food safety expectations and needs and producer practices.

Results: Federal-State Marketing Improvement Program Final Performance Report

FAQ On Farm Food Safety