Two on-farm review demonstrations give glimpse of FDA inspections

By Kay Shipman

Farmers who will need inspections under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule may participate in two, free on-farm review field days. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) staff will conduct the reviews from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Aug. 28 at PrairiErth Farm, Atlanta, and Aug. 29 at Flamm Orchards, Cobden.

Participation is limited to 20 individuals at each location; advance registration is accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. Register online at

Under the produce safety rule, FDA inspections will focus on conditions and practices, which are potential factors in microbial contamination. These include agricultural water, soil amendments of animal origin, domestic and wild animals, water health and hygiene, equipment, tools and buildings.

During the two field days, participants will be able to ask questions and consider how their farms would comply with the rules. Attendees will hear about FDA-developed manuals and tools related to the rules and be able to get to know FDA staff.

In Illinois, FDA is responsible for farm inspections under the FSMA Produce Safety Rule.

The field days are sponsored by Illinois Farm Bureau, Illinois Specialty Growers Association, University of Illinois Extension College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences, and the FDA.