HARRISBURG, Pa. — Food safety inspectors with the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture are offering free on-farm readiness reviews to assess whether produce growers are ready to meet new preventative food safety standards.
The new standards under the federal Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) took effect for fruit and vegetable producers this season.
State food safety inspectors will visit farms on request, and do a mock inspection to determine whether the grower is meeting new protocols for safe harvesting, handling, storage, and transport of the specific produce grown on their farm.
A review takes approximately four hours, depending on the size of the operation, and will help ensure that the farm is ready to pass an FDA inspection.
FSMA was signed into law in 2016, setting new Food and Drug Administration requirements for businesses that grow, process and transport food. Requirements have been phased in, affecting more Pennsylvania businesses this growing season.
Producers may call 717-787-4315 to arrange a review.