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Produce Safety Educators Call #39 August 26, 2019

Total Attendees: 95
Audio recording
Presenters: Gretchen Wall, Betsy Bihn, Donna Clements
Topic: PSA Updates

I. Meeting Notes:

  • IAFP Special Session – July 22, 2019
    • PSA hosted a special session at the annual IAFP meeting that was well attended. Updates were provided on PSA’s training progress and outreach activities (Ms. Gretchen Wall), important regulatory updates (Dr. Don Stoeckel), FDA’s current activities (Dr. Samir Assar), and PSA goals moving forward (Dr. Betsy Bihn). A special thanks to panel discussion members Mr. Michael Botelho (MA), Ms. Kristin Esch (MI), and Ms. Teressa Lopez (AZ) for sharing their experiences and perspectives in developing and managing their state CAP programs, and to Ms. Donna Clements for moderating the session.
  • Version 1.2 of the PSA Grower Training Curriculum Now Available
    • Released July 29, 2019
    • Includes updates for Subpart E extension of compliance dates, typographical errors, organizational edits, and new photos. Complete change log and summarized list of changes available. See more information about version use policies below. Spanish 1.2 will be available by October 31, 2019.
  • PSA Curriculum Version Use Policies
    • In the spring of 2019, the PSA made updates to Version 1.1 of the PSA Grower Training curriculum to reflect the extension of agricultural water (Subpart E) compliance dates and equivalent water testing methodologies. In addition, minor edits were made to other modules to correct grammar, formatting, and content related issues. The following document outlines the policies regarding manual use and highlights changes which trainers should be aware of when delivering the PSA Grower Training.
    • Policy for Manual Version 1.1 Use
      Version 1.1 Manuals can continue to be used, as long as the following two updates are covered during the PSA Grower Training Course:
    • Policy for Manual Version 1.0 Use
      To reduce delivery of outdated educational material to participants, any remaining copies of the Version 1.0 PSA Grower Training curriculum must not be used for registered PSA Grower Trainings after Dec. 31, 2019. If Version 1.0 must be used between now and Dec. 31, 2019, the following updates must be covered during the training to be consistent with Version 1.1 and 1.2 usage.
  • Curriculum Version Use Summary
    • Version 1.0 – Expires December 31, 2019. Registered PSA Grower Training Courses must use Version 1.1 or 1.2 beginning January 1, 2020.
    • Version 1.1 – Can continue to be used, as long as supplemental slides are added to the presentation and handouts containing slides and notes are provided to all participants. The PSA does not intend to print additional copies of this version, but has copies available through the bookstore if trainers need a few copies to use up their current supplies.  All participants attending the training should have the same version of the curriculum. Please phase out use of this version.
    • Version 1.2 – Current and preferred version. No restrictions or updates required since updates were incorporated into the curriculum.
  • PSA Spanish Website & Spanish Lead Trainer Process
    • Spanish website launched in July 2019:
    • PSA currently working to develop a Lead Trainer Review process in Spanish to address the growing need for international trainers.
      • PSA will be recruiting and training Spanish-speaking review committee members to facilitate this process. Contact Gretchen with names/contact info for potential committee members. Must be at minimum a PSA Lead Trainer with Spanish and English proficiency.
      • Process will be identical to current version; will include a two part process (attend the TTT, apply to become a Lead Trainer through the Supplemental Application).
      • Number of challenges to overcome including database development, recruitment and training of reviewers, translation of materials, etc.
      • Updates will be provided as progress is made.
    • Question: Is there any effort being made to recruit Spanish speaking farmers and/or ag workers to be trainers, similar to how some states are using English speaking farmers to provide multiple perspectives during trainings?
      • Answer: We have not specifically targeted recruitment of farmers or ag workers as trainers, though some have attended the TTT course with the intent to become PSA Trainers or Lead Trainers.
    • Question: Is there a plan to host Spanish-language TTT in the US?
      • Answer: PSA can certainly consider hosting one and potentially survey other educators on regional needs/training demand for a TTT in Spanish.
  • PSA Online Course Update
    • Similar structure to the National GAPs program online course
    • Content is the PSA Grower Training curriculum:
    • Full text of Produce Safety Rule requirements on ‘regulatory’ slides, hyperlinked resources, and embedded videos included.
    • Interactive elements help maintain focus and direct learning effort
      • Learning assessments geared toward the curriculum learning objectives
      • Multiple choice, matching, fill in the blank
      • Feedback designed to enhance learning
      • Case studies
      • Short discussions of prior outbreaks
      • Similar to live instruction stories and anecdotes
      • Required discussions
      • Evaluated by instructor, must meet rubric criteria
      • Designed to represent elements of a farm food safety plan
    • Intended to meet needs of remote growers without access to live training courses. Registration cost anticipated to be over $400. Likely will require more hours of engagement than in-person training due to activities built into course.
    • Enrollees in the course will receive a printed PSA Grower Training manual as part of course fees and will be eligible to receive the AFDO certificate if the course is completed.
    • Course is complete and updated to Version 1.2. Next step is FDA review of engagement elements. A pilot course offering is planned for fall 2019, with anticipated course launch early in 2020, pending successful completion of FDA review. PSA may seek qualified Lead Trainers to serve as paid instructors after the launch.
    • Question: How can we connect online course participants to local resources?
      Answer: One suggestion from Dan Fillius at Iowa State would be to send links to the online participants to connect them with local resources for further information. Like connect Iowa participants with our team at Iowa State; otherwise, we might miss out on that connection and opportunity for outreach.
    • Question: Will trainers be able to view this course or use it as a practice tool for in-person trainings?
      Answer: PSA had not previously considered this, but it is a good suggestion. In addition, we can pursue making the online activities for engagement which have been developed available as tools to incorporate into in-person trainings.
    • Question: Can others host an online training?
      Answer: PSA may contract with individuals to teach the PSA Online Grower Training, depending on demand. For now, the PSA staff plans to teach courses. This also gets into the realm of equivalent curricula, so there may be options for other groups to teach an online course, but PSA is not involved in deeming other curricula as equivalent.
    • Question: Are the online courses taught by a Lead Trainer or a Trainer?
      Answer: Lead Trainer at minimum, some may be taught by Trainers of Trainers (ToTs).
  • Supplemental Modules & Advanced Training
    • PSA currently working on supplemental modules (not required for the standard PSA Grower Trainings) to address more technical content such as composting and pathogen persistence in soil amendments through programs such as the Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative (OREI). We will notify the educator’s group and send out general listserv notifications when new materials are available.
    • Kristin Esch (MI) shared video and presentations MSU Extension and MDARD has worked on for soil amendments:
    • PSA is also collaborating with the FSMA Southern Center to develop advanced workshops for PSA Trainers and Lead Trainers which will cover a variety of advanced topics.
      • Save the Dates: Dec. 17-19, 2019 (pilot) and January 28-30, 2019 in Lake Alfred, FL. More info coming soon. PSA plans to utilize the modules to roll out trainings regionally.
    • Mentoring Opportunities – contact any PSA team member for continued learning opportunities and assistance in developing PSA Trainers and Lead Trainers. PSA team has been working to build capacity through the FSMA Regional centers, professional associations (e.g., IAFP), local partnerships, and international “coaching” activities.

Next Call:

Module 3 – Soil Amendments
Date & Time: End of September, TBD
Log-in Information: Coming soon!

Submit suggestions/topics/speaker suggestions to Gretchen (, 607-882-3087).
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