pile of rotting apples

Increasing food safety and reducing food waste

In *All by AgIsAmerica

Protecting the nation’s food supply is a top priority of land-grant institutions across the United States. Whether that is training to ensure food safety, reducing food loss and food waste or research to better detect and protect foods.

Successful examples include:

  • Foodborne illness is a common but preventable problem that impacts one in six Americans and causes some 3,000 deaths annually. Extension in many states provides training to food service workers to help them reduce the risks of food contamination. In Alabama about 950 participated in training to earn Food Protection Manager Certification. Despite Covid-19 restrictions, in Indiana ServSafe training was offered in both Spanish and English through a variety of methods to more than 400 participants who learned about safe food handling, and best practices to reduce the risks of cross contamination of foods. 
  • Unexpected setbacks or opportunities may push growers to change their growing plans mid-season. For produce farmers, these changes may come with new requirements including a produce safety certificate. To help Vermont growers more quickly attain the Community Accreditation for Produce Safety certificate — required for some markets — Extension specialists worked to expedite the program and work directly with producers who otherwise would miss the opportunity to pivot their growing plans. In 2022, this support helped 10 growers sell approximately $100,000 of products and help retain these markets for future growing seasons.

Source: National Impacts Database

Read the full impact statement.

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