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FDA to Hold Public Meetings and Commenting Period on Produce Safety Draft Guidance

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released draft guidance documents for farms to comply with the federal Produce Safety Rule. The Produce Safety Rule establishes science-based minimum standards for the safe growing, harvesting, packing, and holding of produce.

Federal and State Policy Update

The COVID-19 crisis has prompted unique responses by federal, state, and local governments. This legislative update provides a brief snapshot of some key state and federal policy areas CCOF is monitoring. 
 
USDA Coronavirus Food Assistance Program
 
On Thursday, May 14, USDA hosted a webinar to introduce producers to the application process for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP). The webinar recording can be viewed via Zoom. USDA has said that it will release applications soon.

Final Reminder: Help Inform Organic Research Priorities by June 1

Organic researchers need your help in identifying the challenges that certified organic producers and transitioning organic producers face. The Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF), Organic Seed Alliance (OSA), and the Social and Economic Sciences Research Center (SESRC) created surveys that will help set their research priorities. 
 
Certified organic farmers and ranchers can take the organic survey here:

Find Organic Businesses and Products with One Click!

Wondering if there are any organic farms near you? Want to find out who is growing a specific crop or making a specific product? We have a tool for that!
 

Flooding Overwhelms Farmers in Midwest

flood
Late winter storms immediately followed by warm spring weather has caused record flooding in much of the Midwest, including Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri, Wisconsin, Kansas, South Dakota, and Minnesota.
 
The consequences have been catastrophic for family farmers and ranchers in the region; just in Nebraska, the cost to agriculture is estimated at $1 billion. These expenses are due in large part to crop loss, livestock deaths, and building damage.

Free Field Day Highlights the Many Benefits of Hedgerows

California Marine Sanctuary Foundation and Hedgerows Unlimited will host a workshop to demonstrate how to plant hedgerows and to outline their benefits on November 10, 2018, from 1:00 – 4:00 p.m.  
 
Hedgerows provide habitats for beneficial insects and pollinators, serve as windbreaks and visual barriers, sequester carbon, and protect against soil erosion.

Free Four-Day Advocacy Training for Californian Women Farmers and Ranchers

The Occidental Arts & Ecology Center (OAEC) and California Climate Action Network (CalCAN) are hosting a fully funded four-day policy advocacy training for women farmers and ranchers. The training, Forces of Natures: Advocacy Skills Training for Women Farmers and Ranchers, will be held at OAEC in Sonoma, California, on November 9-12, 2017.
 

Free FSMA Compliance and Food Safety-Related Training for Small Farmers of Leafy Greens in the Santa Maria Valley

What: Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) Training to help your farm business comply with FSMA legislation, and a second on-farm training covering food safety best practices, business and marketing, and crisis planning at your operation as a follow-up session for interested farmers. 
 
When: Friday, January 24, 2020, 8:00 a.m.

FSMA Basics for Produce Growers

New federal food safety regulations are starting to take effect. If you grow, harvest, pack, or hold produce for human consumption you may need to comply with the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule. Compliance dates for some produce farms start at the beginning of 2018.

Does my farm need to comply with the FSMA Produce Safety Rule?

The FSMA Produce Safety Rule has different compliance levels based on operation size and type.

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