A Case Study of Food Safety Good Agricultural Practices Certification with HACCP-Level Procedures for Small-Scale Produce Processors and Packers
Barrett Vaughan, Ph.D.

An illustrative case study observed the process undertaken by a permanent, small-scale produce-processing facility and several temporary, seasonal produce packing facilities to become certified as having food safety Good Agricultural Practices (GAP). There is a specific emphasis on how these facilities developed the required plan for HACCP (Hazardous Area Critical Control Points)-level procedures and record keeping. Information was collected from seven USDA Agricultural Marketing Service audits at the permanent processing facility and the temporary packing facilities conducted over a four-year period. The audits resulted in certification of these facilities for processing of southern peas and leafy greens and packing of watermelons at the Harmonized GAP with Global Markets Program – Intermediate Level. The case study details the changes the facilities implemented to become compliant with the requirements identified during the audits, and the development of the HACCP-level plans.

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