Cornell Vegetable Program Enrollment

Program Areas

  • Food Safety
  • Variety Evaluation
  • Market Development
  • Pest Management
  • Cultural Practices

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  • Telephone / Email Consultations
  • VegEdge Newsletter
  • Direct Mailings
  • Educational Meetings & Conferences
  • In-Field Educational Opportunities
  • On-Farm Research Trials

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Food Safety

Food SafetyFarm food safety begins with Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs): the basic environmental and operational conditions that are necessary for the production of safe fruits and vegetables.

Farmers need to take steps to minimize pathogen contamination during production and harvest of their fresh produce. They should avoid side-dressing with manure, exclude animals near fields, promote proper worker hygiene in the field, test irrigation water quality, select irrigation methods that minimize crop wetting or allows for leaves to dry quickly, clean and sanitize harvest bins, promote cleanliness at U-Pick, and keep produce cool.

As consumers demand safer food, a growing number of retailers are requiring farmers to have independent, 3rd-party inspections of farms, certifying that their fruits and vegetables are being grown, harvested and packaged using Good Agricultural Practices.


Relevant Event

2020 Upper Genesee Valley Produce Growers Meeting

February 14, 2020
Freedom, NY

Most Recent Food Safety Content

Cleaning Produce Washing Equipment: Brush Washer Conveyor System Checklist

Robert Hadad, Extension Vegetable Specialist
Cornell Vegetable Program

Last Modified: November 11, 2019
Cleaning Produce Washing Equipment: Brush Washer Conveyor System Checklist

As we learn more about reducing microbial risk on the produce farm, more emphasis is being placed on cleaning food contact surfaces. Accessing the hard to reach spaces in wash line equipment is challenging. Most of the equipment was not made to come apart very easily or in an economically efficient manner. The checklist provided here has been developed through hands-on research cleaning equipment as thoroughly as can be measured without doing microbial testing. That level of cleaning is still being researched but, from our work, the level of cleanliness provided here appears to be sufficient.


Cleaning Produce Washing Equipment: Root Barrel Washer Checklist

Robert Hadad, Extension Vegetable Specialist
Cornell Vegetable Program

Last Modified: November 11, 2019
Cleaning Produce Washing Equipment: Root Barrel Washer Checklist

Months of research was conducted on a root barrel washer to determine the best way to clean the equipment given that it was not designed to be easily taken apart and cleaned. Hard-to-reach places were identified through the tracking of vegetable matter and debris dispersed within the barrel washer during use. An acceptable level of cleanliness completed in a reasonable amount of time was identified. The equipment cleanliness was based on visual criteria only; further investigation of the microbial level is still required. To the best of our efforts, areas of critical cleaning are identified in this checklist as well as all other sections necessary to clean.


Cleaning Produce Washing Equipment: SOPs for Cleaning Other Wash Line Equipment

Robert Hadad, Extension Vegetable Specialist
Cornell Vegetable Program

Last Modified: April 10, 2019
Cleaning Produce Washing Equipment: SOPs for Cleaning Other Wash Line Equipment

In the wash/pack shed, a variety of large and small equipment can be found. All need cleaning. Here is a group of cleaning SOPs for growers to use as examples for writing their own to meet their specific needs. We also provide instructions for preparing sanitizer solution for a pump sprayer used to clean produce washing equipment.



More Food Safety Content

How to Wash Produce Using a Peracetic Acid (PAA) Solution
Food Safety Plan Template
Set Up an Efficient Wash/Pack Facility
NY Water Testing Labs for Food Safety Use
Cold Storage Chart and Reference Guide to Commercial Vegetable Storage
Crop Cooling and Storage
Material List and Cost Calculator for Building a Wash Table and Aerator
Video: Produce Washing Stations - How to Use a Germicidal Bleach
Cost Calculator: Three Basin Produce Washing
Sanitizer Dose Calculation Spreadsheet
Crop Cooler Storage Planner
Recommendations for Cleaning and Storing Your Harvest Containers and Tools
Video: Farm Food Safety as if Someone's Life Depended On It
Building an Easy Clean Produce Wash Table
Wash Your Greens: A Low-Cost but Effective Washer/Spinner Design
Food Safety Considerations and Design for Packing Sheds
Sample SOPs on Hand Washing and On-Farm Injury
more crops
Asparagus

Asparagus

Beets

Beets

Broccoli

Broccoli

Brussels Sprouts

Brussels Sprouts

Cabbage

Cabbage

Carrots

Carrots

Cauliflower

Cauliflower

Cucumbers

Cucumbers

Dry Beans

Dry Beans

Eggplant

Eggplant

Ethnic Vegetables

Ethnic Vegetables

Garlic

Garlic

Horseradish

Horseradish

Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi

Leeks

Leeks

Lettuce / Leafy Greens

Lettuce / Leafy Greens

Melons

Melons

Onions

Onions

Parsnips

Parsnips

Peas

Peas

Peppers

Peppers

Potatoes

Potatoes

Pumpkins / Gourds

Pumpkins / Gourds

Radishes

Radishes

Rhubarb

Rhubarb

Rutabaga

Rutabaga

Snap Beans

Snap Beans

Squash - Summer

Squash - Summer

Squash- Winter

Squash- Winter

Sweet Corn

Sweet Corn

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potatoes

Tomatoes

Tomatoes

Turnips

Turnips

more crops

Upcoming Events

Western S. Tier Produce Meeting

Event Offers DEC Credits

January 28, 2020
Jamestown, NY

view details

2020 Upper Genesee Valley Produce Growers Meeting

February 14, 2020
Freedom, NY

view details

Precision Agriculture Series - Erie

February 19, 2020
March 4, 2020
March 25, 2020
: Erie County
East Aurora, NY

view details

Announcements

2019 Cornell Vegetable Program Year in Review

We closed out the decade with many accomplishments in 2019! We look forward to helping the New York vegetable industry in the new decade!

This year, our Specialists gave presentations at 104 events, sharing our knowledge with 3,936 people.

We continue to conduct on-farm research to help answer the questions of our growers. The Cornell Vegetable Program managed 38 research grants and projects in 2019. We extend our gratitude to the 107 farms and organizations that offered us land, labor, supplies, and generous financial contributions to support our trials!

We cannot forget to thank the 14 Cooperative Extension Associations that partnered with us this year too.

Our 2019 Year in Review brochure highlights our research and educational projects:
  • Design and Fabrication of an Affordable Laser Scarecrow
  • High Tunnel Research Increases Profits for New York Growers
  • Improved White Mold Management Guidelines for Snap, Lima, and Dry Beans
  • New Potato, Dry Bean, and Vegetable Storage Specialist Joins the Team
  • First Cornell Vegetable Program On-Farm Cabbage Herbicide Trial Explore Novel Approaches to Weed Control
  • Record-Low Insecticide Use in Muck Onion Production in 2019
  • Improving Produce Storage Quality through Forced Air Cooling
  • Mapping the Way to Better Disease Management


FSMA Regulations for (Very) Small Food Processors

FSMA Regulations for Small and Very Food Processors
Friday, January 31, 2020
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Cornell Agri-Tech, G34 Food Research Lab, 665 W North St, Geneva, NY 14456


Did you know that the new federal regulations for small food processors under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) are in effect as of September 2018? Do you know what is required of you or your facility as a New York State food manufacturer?

During this one-day introductory course, the experts at Cornell's Food Venture Center will explain the new food safety exemption requirements for Small Businesses. Get the information and tools you need to make your operation comply with the FDA rules for selling safe products to the public.

Registration space is limited to 24 attendees in Geneva. The cost to register is $25/person. Deadline to register is Friday, January 17, 2020. Register now!


GAPs Trainings in the Region

Attend a Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) training to learn:
  • How to Identify Food Safety Risks on Your Farm
  • Strategies to Mitigate the Risks
  • How to Satisfy Food Safety Requirements for Farm to School
  • How to Create a Food Safety Plan for Your Farm
Seneca County: A two-day GAPs training at Vince's Park, Corner of Routes 318 and 5&20, Seneca Falls.
Monday, February 10, 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday, February 11, 9:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Register online by February 1. Call Judy Wright at 315-539-9251 x109 with questions.

Wayne County: GAPs training at CCE Wayne County, 1581 NY-88, Newark, NY 14513.
Thursday, March 19
Register online by March 12. Call Craig Kahlke at 585-735-5448 with questions.


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