Practical Food Safety and USDA Programs Workshop
9:00 AM09:00

Practical Food Safety and USDA Programs Workshop


9:00 a.m.-11:30 a.m.


Cooper Agricultural Services, Global Growers, UGA Extension, and their partners invite you to a unique and immersive workshop on Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) compliance for small farms, low-cost and effective food safety practices, and UGA and USDA services and resources. This is a rare chance to hear from national experts on how small and sustainable farmers can manage and thrive in the new environment of food safety regulations. Cara Fraver, Business Services Director for the National Young Farmers Coalition, will provide an extensive overview of FSMA rules and exemptions. Billy Mitchell from the National Farmers Union will join her to review simple and effective steps to manage potential biological contaminations and improve overall farm processes. The schedule will also include speakers from UGA, USDA NRCS, and private and nonprofit representatives to discuss programs in place to benefit small farmers. This event will be informal and take place on a farm. Coffee and light refreshments will be served.


9-9:15 – Welcome and Introductions – Donn Cooper, Cooper Agricultural Services, LLC; Host Farmer

  • Mark Frye, UGA Extension – Wayne County
  • Cara Fraver, Business Services Director, National Young Farmer Coalition
  • Billy Mitchell, Local Food Safety Collaborative Coordinator, National Farmers Union
  • Rita Barrow, District Conservationist, USDA NRCS
  • Tenisio Seanima, Food Safety Coordinator, Global Growers
  • Perri Campis, Farmer Services Coordinator, Georgia Organics

9:15-9:30 – UGA Extension Services; Mark Fryer, UGA extension

9:30-10:45 – Farm Food Safety – Cara Fraver, National Young Farmers Coalition; Billy Mitchell, National Farmers Union

  • Food Safety Modernization Act 101: What You Need To Know as a Small Grower
    • Compliance Deadlines
    • Exemptions for Farmers
    • Documentation Requirements
    • Record-Keeping Templates
    • FSMA Vs. Good Agricultural Practices

10:45-11:00 – NRCS Programs: EQIP — Rita Barrow, District Conservationist, USDA NRCS

11:00-11:15 – The Farm Bill, USDA Grant Programs, and Outreach Initiatives in Georgia  — Donn Cooper, CooperAg; Perri Campis, Georgia Organics; Tenisio Seanima, Global Growers

11:15-11:30 – Q&A

11:30 – Conclusion


There is no cost to attend.


Space is limited. Please email or by May 30 to RSVP.

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9:00 AM09:00

On-Farm GAP & Food Safety Workshop


Two sessions: 9 a.m.-12 p.m. and 1 p.m.-4 p.m.

Topics Covered

The morning workshop will focus on practical farm infrastructure for small and limited-resource farms. In the afternoon the discussion will focus on on packinghouse management and wholesale requirements for packaging. Each workshop will feature a classroom section related to GAP practices and certification along a farm tour demonstrating hands-on examples. 


Suggested donation is $5.


Email Billy Mitchell at Free coffee, tea, lunch, and food safety templates provided to all participants. Registration is available for one or both workshops. 

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