Produce Safety Rule
The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule was made final on Jan. 26, 2016, and establishes science-based minimum standards for the safe growing, harvesting, packing and holding of fruits and vegetables grown for human consumption.
Many, if not all farms will be impacted by at least part of the FSMA Produce Safety Rule, even those that are very small. Compliance dates for some parts of the rule are already underway, with full compliance for many farms starting in January 2018.
What does the FSMA Produce Safety Rule cover?
The Produce Safety Rule, outlined in Section 105 of FSMA, establishes science-based minimum standards for safe production and harvesting of fresh fruits and vegetables. These standards are based on a foundation of Good Agricultural Practices. The rule is divided into several parts, including standards for:
- Worker health, hygiene and training
- Agricultural water, both for production and post-harvest uses
- Biological soil amendments (e.g., compost, manure)
- Domesticated and wild animals
- Equipment, tools, buildings and sanitation
- Production of sprouts
The FDA has a brief summary of the key requirements for the final Produce Safety Rule (pdf) available on their website.
To find out if your farm is covered by the Produce Safety Rule complete this self-guided decision tool.