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Fruit, veggie workshop scheduled

By Staff | Feb 8, 2015

SPENCER – A pair of Good Agricultural Practices workshops for food safety on fruit and vegetable operations is set for Spencer through Iowa State university Extension.

Course material also covers new food safety regulations and how they affect farmers.

Level 1 is et from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Feb. 12; and Level 2 from 9. am. to 4 p.m. Feb. 20.

Both will be held at Iowa Lakes Community College in Spencer.

Level 1 is training for growers who provide food to consumers through community supported agriculture or farmers markets, or are considering retail foodservice sales.

Training covers good agriculture best practices and market considerations.

Level 2 workshops guide farmers in the development of a written farm food safety plan.

Farmers considering sales to retail foodservices such as grocers, restaurants, hospitals and other institutions, and those interested in adding value to fresh produce and selling products in a convenience form will have the tools to demonstrate that GAPs are in place after attending the workshop, so farmers can offer food safety assurances to buyers.

Iowa State University Extension and Outreach faculty and specialists instructing the workshops include Angela Shaw, food safety; Catherine Strohbehn, food safety and local foods systems; and Linda Naeve, value added agriculure.

The workshops are funded through a grant from the USDA Agricultural Marketing Services Specialty Crop Block Grant Program.

The fee is $25 per workshop with discounts for farms and multiple level participation.

Attendees will receive a certificate of completion following the program.

Registration can be made directly online at http://bit.ly/IOWAGAP. For additional information contact Angela Shaw at (515) 294-0868.

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