Mounts Botanical Garden in suburban West Palm Beach will offer a produce-safety course on Jan. 29. Here, Dr. Evan Johnson, a specialist in plant pathology, is shown at the University of Florida’s Citrus Research and Education Center in Lake Alfred. Florida Food & Farm file photo courtesy UF/IFAS

Do you grow fruits and/or vegetables? Are you interested in learning about produce safety, the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule, Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs), and co-management of natural resources and food safety?

On Monday, Jan. 29, at the Mounts Building Auditorium at Mounts Botanical Garden, 531 N. Military Trail in West Palm Beach, the Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training Course will be offered. This one-day course is a way to satisfy the FSMA Produce Safety Rule requirement.

The instructors will spend about seven hours covering these seven topics:
• Introduction to Produce Safety
• Worker Health, Hygiene, and Training
• Soil Amendments
• Wildlife, Domesticated Animals and Land Use
• Agricultural Water (Part I: Production Water; Part II: Post-harvest Water)
• Post-harvest Handling and Sanitation
• How to Develop a Farm Food-Safety Plan

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

After completing the course, participants will be eligible to receive a certificate from the Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO) that verifies they have completed the training course.

The cost — $25 for Florida residents, $125 for nonresidents — includes training materials, lunch, refreshments, and the certificate of attendance issued by AFDO. Class size is limited to 50 attendees.

To register, visit Deadline to register is Jan. 24.

For more information, contact Sarah McCoy, coordinator, at [email protected] or 863-956-8632.