The Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) is a collaborative project between Cornell University, United States Department of Agriculture, and the Food and Drug Administration. The overarching objective of this project is to provide the produce industry and associated groups with training and educational opportunities related to current best practices and guidance, and future regulatory requirements by establishing the Produce Safety Alliance.
The curricula will include GAPs and the provisions included within the FSMA Produce Safety Rule. Outreach efforts will focus on fresh produce growers, packers, and grower cooperatives with special emphasis on small and very small scale farms and packinghouses. Small operations may be defined as those who currently direct market to consumers, have gross sales of under $500,000, or have an immediate need of assistance in understanding and implementing food safety practices.
There are four main objectives:
- Providing educational outreach assistance to fresh produce growers and packers, including grower cooperatives, to increase their understanding of the critical role they play in public health via implementation of on-farm and packinghouse GAPs, on-farm environmental coordinated management (co-management), and other preventive controls;
- Developing a standardized, multi-format training and education program to assist the produce industry including growers and packers and regulatory agencies with the implementation of FDA's requisite produce safety regulation;
- Developing a standardized, multi-format, training and education program to assist the produce industry including growers and packers and regulatory agencies in understanding the environmental benefits of co-management and to integrate food safety and environmental co-management principles while implementing FDA's produce safety regulation; and
- Being a repository for and providing easy access to stakeholders of up-to-date scientific and technical information related to FDA's produce safety regulation, on-farm and packinghouse produce safety, and related environmental co-management.