Do you grow fresh produce as a part of a community garden, school garden or for donation?

If so, join University of Minnesota Extension from noon-1:30 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, June 23-25, to learn practical steps for keeping your produce and customers healthy.

This webinar series teaches science-based best practices to reduce foodborne illnesses associated with fresh fruits and vegetables, also known as Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs).

Register by noon on Monday, June 22 at z.umn.edu/GAPs4Gardeners.

GAPs are practical strategies to keep your customers safe while improving shelf life and the quality of your fresh produce. These practices are especially important if your garden is providing food to children, the elderly, or immunocompromised, as they are more susceptible to foodborne pathogens.

Note that we will discuss COVID-19 specific recommendations on the first day, but this series is about food safety in general for fruit and vegetable gardeners.

Attend just one day or all, but we will not repeat topics. All webinars will be recorded.

This three-day webinar series is intended for Extension Master Gardeners, community gardeners, school gardeners, and those growing for donation, but any farmer or gardener is welcome to attend.

The educational session will be the first hour and the last 30 minutes will be for questions. A certificate of completion will be available upon request.

The topics that will be covered in this series are:

  • Tuesday, June 23: Brief COVID-19 update for gardens, worker hygiene and handwashing, water quality and testing, manure and compost
  • Wednesday, June 24: Animals in the garden and pest control, safe harvest, washing and packing set-ups and recommendations
  • Thursday, June 25: Cleaning and sanitizing tools and equipment, tool and material storage, volunteer and staff training and management, records and log sheets

All registrants will receive access to the live sessions along with the recordings. The recordings will be shared at the end of the week.

For questions about content or certification please email hultb006@umn.edu. Registration questions can be sent to wins0115@umn.edu.

Robin Trott is a horticulture educator with University of Minnesota Extension. Contact her at 320-762-3890, or at trot0053@umn.