Floodwaters commonly contain microbial contaminants and can directly affect public health.
(08/11/16) The LSU AgCenter will host a three-day course on food safety regulations and best practices for preventing contamination on Aug. 29-31.
Make sure you know which practices to follow even if you don't hire any workers
End of Worker Health, Hygiene and Training Decision Tree
All health and hygiene facilities maintenance should be recorded.
Records should be kept for all toilet and hand washing facility monitoring, cleaning and restocking.
Facilities should be checked daily for cleanliness and supplies.
Facilities must be cleaned and restocked on a regular basis.
Clean and conveniently located toilets and hand washing facilities are required.
Clean toilet and hand washing facilities for workers and visitors should be within a 5 minute or 1/4 mile walk of the fields.
Visitors should acknowledge they have read the farm food safety policies.
Visitors should be asked to sign in and read the farm food safety policies.
Records of all training programs should be kept.
Worker training is very important for food safety.
Signs should be posted in a language workers understand or with pictures that describe the appropriate actions.
Signs should be displayed to remind workers to follow the farm's food safety practices.
Workers are responsible for implementing food safety policies
Workers must wash their hands before handling produce.
Workers should have designated areas to take breaks
Workers and visitors should have access to a first aid kit in the event of a cut or other injury
A first aid kit must be available in a known and convenient location
Every farm should have an illness reporting policy
Workers should be informed not to come to work if they are sick and instructed on how to report illnesses.
Understanding microbial risks associated with farm work and implementing practices that reduce these risks are essential to produce safety
Workers must receive safety training in a language they understand.
Final page of the Land Use Decision Tree
Composted manure is at a much lower risk for contaminating crop and water sources than raw manure
Store compost as far away as possible from water sources and produce fields.
Raw manure storage areas should be at a safe distance away from surface water sources
Raw manure storage areas near surface water can result in water contamination, either by runoff or through leaching.
There are several factors to consider when assessing your fields risk of contamination when there are manure storage areas nearby
Manure storage areas can leach pathogens into the soil, wells, and other water sources.
Listeriosis is a rare but serious illness caused by eating food contaminated with the bacteria. About 1,600 people in the United States get sick from listeria each year. It is the third leading cause of death from food poisoning. (PDF Format Only)
Some people continue to believe that raw milk is a natural food and therefor is healthier and safer than pasteurized milk.
When assessing your farm's risk of contamination, there are many factors to consider
If manure is close to production areas, there is a risk that it will contaminate produce by runoff or wind spread.
When assessing risks to your farm, some factors to consider are whether physical barriers are present
Domestic animals on adjacent land present a food safety risk.
Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO) have a high concentration of animals that may shed pathogens in their manure
Large scale animal operations are a significant food safety risk.
Produce fields should not be located within 30 feet of septic tanks
Underground septic systems can leach chemicals and pathogens into soil and water.
Assess the likelihood of contamination if a field is located near a landfill or treatment facility
Chemicals and pathogens may leach from landfill and sewage areas to contaminate crops.
Monitor the field for any signs of runoff
Runoff or wind spread can contaminate your produce field.
If you farm on land with a recent history of flooding, soil should be tested before crops are grown.
If your land is prone to flooding, consider the risk present to the crop and water sources.
Produce can be transported from the field to the packing area or from the farm to market