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Food safety certification course offered to potential on-farm food entrepreneurs

Two sessions
February 23, 2013

Agricultural entrepreneurs who want to produce specific foods in their on-farm kitchens can receive food safety training and become certified under Delaware law at an upcoming workshop jointly sponsored by the University of Delaware Cooperative Extension and the Delaware Department of Agriculture.

The two-part program by Dr. Sue Snider will take place from 6 to 10 p.m., Tuesday, March 19 and 26, at the Department of Agriculture offices near Camden. The registration deadline is Tuesday, March 12.

Participants will learn how to identify potentially hazardous and nonpotentially hazardous foods; understand foodborne pathogens and ways to control them; reduce the risk of foodborne illness; evaluate their plan for controlling potential microbial problems; and understand state regulations on farm-produced, nonpotentially hazardous food items.

Those items include such things as baked breads, cakes, muffins, cookies, nonchocolate candy, jellies, jams, preserves, marmalades, fruit butters, fruit pies, herbs in vinegar, honey and herb mixtures, dried fruit and vegetables, spices or herbs, maple syrup, sorghum, popcorn, caramel corn, peanut brittle and roasted nuts.

The training, certification and inspections of farm kitchens are required under Delaware regulations adopted in 2006, and apply to farmers who wish to process nonpotentially hazardous foods in their on-farm home kitchens for sale to the public at DDA-listed farmers markets, on their farm or at a roadside stand on or near their farm. On-farm kitchens will be inspected by appointment after participants complete the training and pass a written test.

To register for the training, contact Debra Whitmore at debra.whitmore@state.de.us or 302-698-4540.