RT7 It's Going to Take a Village:  Grower Perspectives on FSMA Implementation

Tuesday, July 11, 2017: 1:30 PM-3:00 PM
Room 13-14 (Tampa Convention Center)
Primary Contact: Angela Ferelli
Organizers: Justin Falardeau , Angela Ferelli and Daniel Weller
Convenors: Justin Falardeau and Angela Ferelli
Panelists: Samir Assar , Elizabeth Bihn , Chelsea Matzen , Robert Sakata , Janie Simms Hipp and Bob Ziel
Despite Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) training and the development of food safety plans, many growers have concerns about the struggle to meet the new produce safety standards established by the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), voluntary grower agreements, and buyers. One cause of concern is a lack of guidance regarding the implementation of FSMA, which creates unnecessary roadblocks to the implementation of these standards, and has legal and economic implications for growers. By bringing together a diverse group of grower representatives from multiple produce-growing regions and farm types/sizes, extension agents, and government stakeholders, this round table will provide a forum for discussing grower concerns about FSMA and conforming to these new standards.

This discussion will enable (i) growers and grower representatives to discuss roadblocks they are, currently, encountering as they adapt their practices to meet the new regulations (ii) extension agents and researchers to identify areas where improved communication is needed, and (iii) government stakeholders to identify areas where improved guidance is needed. The round table will foster discussion of these issues from the perspective of growers, and will facilitate substantive conversation between extension agents, grower representatives, and other stakeholders involved in the production of safe food. By providing a forum for government and academic stakeholders to engage with the grower community, this round table will further integrate the IAFP and grower communities. In doing so, it will increase IAFP members’ understanding of grower needs, and, therefore, areas where more research is needed to directly benefit growers. The round table is a prime opportunity to involve developing food safety professionals interested in pre-harvest food safety by providing a forum to interact with the grower community. While there have been multiple round tables discussing challenges surrounding FSMA adoption, few have included small growers or emerging food safety professionals in the conversation.

See more of: Roundtables