Farm-Based Food Safety Training Coming to Montana

Farm-Based Food Safety Training Coming to Montana

Fresh-produce farmers will be able to see and experience practical on-farm solutions to developing their food safety plans this summer at two farm-based food safety trainings. These workshops are designed for fresh-produce growers who want to enter into wholesale markets that may require a food safety plan, or for producers who are curious about the food safety modernization act or will require a GAP audit.

The first training will take place at Prairie Heritage Farm near Great Falls, in Power, Montana, on Friday, May 19, from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Courtney and Jacob Cowgill have implemented a food safety plan on their mixed enterprise farm and will share their experience developing the plan with workshop participants.They will also demonstrate their approaches to implementing their food safety plan, and we will be performing a partial mock internal audit.

Registration is required:

For more information, contact Tammy Howard at or 406-494-8683.

“The purpose of the workshop is to help growers of vegetables, fruit, or nuts see practical solutions to implementing a food safety plan and to make it less daunting,” says project leader Tammy Howard. The workshops will be co-led by farmers Jacob and Courtney Cowgill, GAP Auditor Jonda Crosby, and GAP internal auditor Dave Wise. Betsy Miller from the Department of Agriculture will help growers understand their responsibilities under the new food safety laws. Participants will leave the workshop with:

  • An understanding of the key components of food safety plans and tangible, farm-based best practices
  • An understanding of the GAP audit process through a mock audit
  • An opportunity to talk to regional food safety experts
  • Farm food safety plan organizational tips, record keeping and best practices
  • An understanding of how to talk to buyers about their food safety plans
  • An introduction to the Group GAP concept

The workshop is free and lunch will be provided.

Funding for this project was provided by the Washington State University Western Extension Risk Management Education Center and the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA).

USDA SAREwestern extension

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