OEFFA releases food safety planning guide

Farm and Dairy, 11/2/17

COLUMBUS — A publication released by the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA) will help produce farmers understand what it means to develop a farm food safety plan and meet new federal food safety rules.

Food Safety Planning Down on the Farm: Examples from Ohio Certified Organic Farms features eight vegetable and fruit farms of various scales and serving diverse markets.

OEFFA Education Program Director Renee Hunt said they hope these case studies will help produce growers be less intimidated by food safety planning.

FSMA. Produce farmers face new regulations with the passage of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).

While the law exempts the smallest farms (those selling less than $25,000 in covered produce, such as lettuce, strawberries, and radishes), some buyers may require those operations meet FSMA standards as well.

The publication identifies challenges and discusses changes that reduce risk.

“Many times, farmers are already doing the right thing,” said OEFFA Sustainable Agriculture Educator Eric Pawlowski. “It is just a matter of codifying their practices and documenting the actions they have taken.”

The new report, along with additional resources, are available at policy.oeffa.org/foodsafety.