Food Safety Legislation Pending, Discussion Mar. 11

Fresh Produce Safety Farmer Listening Session
Thursday, March 11, 2010 7:30 pm
Agriculture Building Auditorium in Pittsboro, NC
Please RSVP for this event by calling Jane Tripp at 919-542-8202 just so we can get a headcount for refreshments.
Fruit and vegetable farmers: What do you think about on-farm fruit and vegetable food safety issues? We want to know.
Please join us for a farmer listening session in Pittsboro on Thursday March 11, 2010 at 7:30 pm. The listening session will be hosted by the Chatham County Center of NC Cooperative Extension in the Agriculture Building Auditorium.
For more than a year, food safety legislation has been pending in the U.S. Congress. This past summer, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation (HR 2749) and a bill awaits action in the U.S. Senate (S510).
In addition, the Food & Drug Administration and USDA have announced that they are working together to develop rules and regulations for on-farm production of fruits and vegetables in the area of food safety.
North Carolina Farm Bureau and the NC Fresh Produce Safety Task Force would like to hear what you think. Regulations will be coming. It is our understanding that the intent is to regulate all fruit and vegetable production on the farm. Based on the bills that have passed and been introduced, a number of areas that will be regulated have been identified:
Please join us to talk about potential on-farm food safety regulation and what will and will not work for you. Your comments will be presented to the FDA and USDA now, before regulations are written.
Who should attend? Fruit and vegetable producers. Small producers with production of less than 100 acres are especially welcome. Wholesale growers, retail/farm stand growers, growers with CSAs or who sell at farmers' markets. While we realize this topic may be of interest to non-producers, this meeting is for producers only.

Bring your ideas and we look forward to seeing you March 11 in Pittsboro. * Please RSVP for this event by calling Jane Tripp at 919-542-8202 just so we can get a headcount for refreshments.

Directions to the Agriculture Building in Pittsboro: http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/chatham/ag/SustAg/workshopdirections.html

For those of you outside the Triangle, listening sessions are also scheduled in several other counties (details are still being worked out): March 8Stanley County BreakfastUnion County Dinner March 9Watauga County BreakfastLincoln County Lunch March 12Brunswick County Lunch March 16 Gaston/Cleveland/Rutherford Counties timing to be determined March 18Harnett County, Ag Center, Lillington lunch, 12:30 p.m. March 26Duplin County/Wayne County timing to be determined For more information on the specific details of the meetings outside Pittsboro, contact Debbie Hamrick: Debbie HamrickDirector Specialty CropsNC Farm Bureau FederationPO Box 27766Raleigh, NC 27611-7766(919) 334-2977Cell: (919) 302-9538debbie.hamrick@ncfb.org

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