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Good Agricultural Practices

hand washing

As producers begin to scale up to sell their products to larger outlets like schools or wholesalers they might find that their new prospective buyers require Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) Certification. In some cases buyers might be willing to accept verification of a working food safety plan as evidence that good practices are followed. Whether or not a buyer demands a food safety plan, all farmers should be concerned about the public health and safety implications of their product. Following good Agricultural practices can be easy. A food safety plan can also be advantageous as a step toward GAP certification.


FSP4U (Food Safety Plan for You)
Agriculture Health and Safety — University of Minnesota
This site, part of the On-Farm GAPs Education Program, is a food safety plan template. Download the documents and replace the red text with information that is applicable to you and your farm.

FSP4U Sample Log Sheets
Agriculture Health and Safety — University of Minnesota
This site, part of the On-Farm GAPs Education Program, includes a wide variety of log sheets that can be used all around your farm/operation. Log sheets cover topics like cooler temp, employee training, field sanitization unit service, manure application, thermometer calibration, and more.

How-to Videos
Agriculture Health and Safety — University of Minnesota
These short informational videos show you how to build a handwashing station, how to take a water sample, and use thermometers to check cooler temperatures. They are part of the On-Farm GAPs Education Program.

How to Build a Field Handwashing Station in 10 Easy Steps for Under $20
Agricultural Health and Safety Program — University of Minnesota
This is an easy step-by-step guide for building a field handwashing station.

Risk and Crisis Communication Videos
Having a plan for risk and crisis communication could be very important if a food borne illness is suspected. These videos dramatize two potential scenarios: one where the farmers are well prepared for risk and crisis due to proper planning and understanding of the risk-reducing practices they use, and one where the farmers are taken by surprise by an outbreak and unable to show that they are not at fault. Scenario 1: What NOT to Say | Scenario 2: What TO Say

Guide to Minimize Microbial Food Safety Hazards for Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
Good Agricultural Practices Program — Cornell University
This Federal Department of Agricultural document provides information on how to minimize microbial food safety hazards on your farm.

Food Safety Begins on the Farm: A Grower’s Guide
This guide discusses fruit and vegetable related food-borne illnesses and discusses several practices that can reduce the risk of illnesses that originate from the farm.

Cleaning up Small Petroleum Spills
Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
This fact sheet outlines how to clean up petroleum spills on your farm.

Spill Debris Disposal Options
Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
This fact sheet provides information on how to clean up a variety of debris that are common on farms.

USDA Good Agricultural Practices Good Handling Practices Audit Verification Checklist
United States Department of Agriculture
This checklist will help you bring your farm up to code for GAP certification.

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