The Georgia Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association is excited to announce a grant-funded opportunity through USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant to provide food safety cost share and reimbursement to fruit and vegetable farms and/or packing facility operations through its Produce Food Safety Services (PFSS) program. Participants are asked to complete an online food safety needs assessment which serves as the pre- and postproject survey. All responses will be confidential and the identity of program participants as well as the services performed will not be shared with USDA. GFVGA reserves the right to choose the program participants by any method it deems appropriate. All program participants must abide by GFVGA/PFSS Terms of Agreement.
50% cost share of PFSS Food Safety Specialists’ hourly rate
This cost share will provide the services of PFSS Food Safety Specialists at 50% of the GFVGA membership hourly rate of $120/hour. The cost share will provide PFSS staff time at a 50% discount which is $60/hour. These services can include, but are not limited to, PFSS Food Safety Specialists time to travel to conduct an onsite farm and/or packing facility mock audit, discuss the “Good,” the “Needs Improvement,” the “Bad,” of the operation and educate “Why” that is, work to create all or parts of a custom food safety program for the operation(s) including, paperwork, SOPs, checklists, risk assessments, HACCP plans, trainings, training materials, audit preparation tailored to individual operations, schedule audits, be present during the audit, and corrective actions after the audit. Staff time cost share can be offered for a maximum of 18 hours per operation.
50% or up to $1,000 cost reimbursement of third party food safety audit fee
This grant can provide a total cost reimbursement of 50% or up to $1,000 of a third-party food safety audit fee. Audit fee cost reimbursement will be reimbursed directly to the farm/operation after the completion of a third-party food safety audit and after the full audit fee has been paid to the auditing firm.
Up to $120 cost reimbursement of water sample testing fees
This grant can provide a total cost reimbursement of up to $120 for water sample testing fees. Water sample testing cost reimbursement will be reimbursed directly to the farm/operation after the completion of a water sample test has been conducted and after the full laboratory fees have been paid.