KIWIFRUIT GROWERS FOOD SAFETY SELF-AUDIT CHECKLIST

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1 KIWIFRUIT GROWERS FOOD SAFETY SELF-AUDIT CHECKLIST California Kiwifruit growers can use this voluntary, self-audit checklist as a tool to conduct their own on-farm food safety risk assessment to determine their level of risk for microbial contamination, and then take voluntary actions to reduce those risks. Developed by: California Kiwifruit Commission September 2006

2 KIWIFRUIT GROWERS FOOD SAFETY SELF-AUDIT CHECKLIST The purpose of this checklist is to provide kiwifruit growers with a self-assessment tool to determine their level of risk for microbial contamination. Growers can identify risks that may exist on their farms and through the use of good agricultural practices (GAPS) take voluntary actions to reduce those risks. GAPS do not introduce new regulations. In many ways, if an operation is already in compliance with current federal and state regulations, minimal additional effort will be needed to pass a food safety audit. The areas where most of the industry members will most likely need to concentrate on are the development of policy regarding food safety practices specific to their operation and maintaining proper documentation. Completion of this self-audit for each farm location, along with maintenance of the suggested logs and records, should provide the necessary information in the event that the grower chooses to, or is required to have a third-party food safety audit conducted in the future. Retail and food service industries continue to move towards third party audits as a tool to determine which vendors are in compliance with GAPs and in many cases will not buy from suppliers unless they are certified by a third party audit. There are several third party food safety auditors within the state of California that are experienced in the fresh produce industry. Along with performing audits they can also assist individual organizations in providing food safety training and developing food safety manuals. Growers should work together with their packer and shipper to determine which auditor is best suited for their needs. In a few rare cases buyers will only recognize audits by certain firms. The three main companies currently providing food safety audits for the fresh produce industry in California are: Davis Fresh Technologies (530) , PrimusLabs.com (805) , and the USDA Federal-State Audit Program (559) , Davis Fresh Technologies and the USDA have each reviewed this self-audit and expressed that this kiwifruit growers checklist can be a helpful tool in preparing for a third party audit. (This listing of third party auditors is not to be interpreted as an endorsement either by inclusion or exclusion.) The California Kiwifruit Commission encourages growers to consult with packers, shippers and food safety professionals before implementing a Food Safety Program. You may also contact Barbara Windmiller with the California Kiwifruit Commission at (559) ; for additional information or resources. 1

3 IMPLEMENTAION OF A FOOD SAFETY PROGRAM 1) Has the farm operation designated someone to implement and oversee a food safety program? 2) Name of designated person: 3) In areas where the grower is dependent upon outside sources to provide labor and/or containers and field equipment, the designated food safety person oversees that good agricultural practices are used? 1) Location of kiwifruit field: LAND USE HISTORY 2) Number of acres: 3) Number of years this field has been used for kiwifruit production: 4) Prior to kiwifruit production, land was used for (other crop, pasture, non-ag use): 5) Has the growing area been flooded due to natural causes? 6) Have soil tests for contaminants been conducted on growing area? 7) Maintain records of all soil test results. 8) Prepare a map of growing area which shows adjacent land use. 9) Do you farm kiwifruit at other locations? 2

4 WATER A. Irrigation Water Source 1) Does irrigation water come in contact with kiwifruit? 2) Specify the source of irrigation water. (River, stream, irrigation ditch, open canal, pond, lake, groundwater from wells, municipal supplies, other) 3) If irrigation water is sourced from a well, what is the date of the well construction? 4) Has well casing been inspected? (Provide records.) 5) Have precautions been taken to prevent backflow into the well? 6) Are any measures taken to minimize microbial contamination of your water sources (e.g., visual inspection, chlorination, filtration, rodent control, livestock barriers, etc.)? 7) Describe measures taken: B. Water Testing and Record Keeping 1) Are your water sources tested for generic E. coli? 2) Water tests are conducted: Annually Semi-Annually Quarterly Monthly 3) Maintain records of all water test results. 4) Have water test results indicated the presence of E. coli? 5) Describe corrective actions taken (disinfecting, filtration): 3

5 C. Irrigation Method Used 1) Specify the method of irrigation (flood, drip, microsprinkler, overhead sprinkler). 2) Where water quality is unknown or cannot be controlled, have irrigation practices been modified to reduce the risk of contamination? 3) Describe modification of practices (timing of irrigation, minimize water contact with fruit): D. Non-Irrigation Uses 1) Are overhead spray/sprinklers used for frost protection? 2) Source of water for frost protection. 3) Is water used for foliar pesticide applications? 4) Source of water for pesticide applications. 5) Are measures taken to ensure that agricultural chemicals are not stored, loaded or mixed near water sources? 6) Where water quality is unknown or cannot be controlled, have non-irrigation practices been modified to reduce the risk of contamination? 4) Describe modification of practices (maximize time before harvest): 4

6 MANURE AND MUNICIPAL BIOSOLIDS A. Manure/Composted Manure Supplier and Record Keeping 1) Name of manure/composted manure supplier: 2) Do you have a specification sheet from the supplier that provides information on the sources of the material? 3) Maintain records documenting all applications. Include supplier information, lot number, dates, amounts, methods of application and name of applicator. B. Manure/Composted Manure Use and Practices 1) Is composted manure used as a soil supplement and/or nutrient source? 2) Is raw manure used as a soil supplement and/or nutrient source? 3) If raw manure is used, is it applied a minimum of 120 days prior to kiwifruit harvest? 4) Applications are made in the: Fall Winter Spring Summer 5) Manure/composted manure is incorporated into the soil immediately after application? 6) Kiwifruit canes are kept trim so that fruit does not come in contact with the soil? 7) Any fruit coming in contact with the ground is not packed? 8) To the extent possible, domestic animals and wildlife are excluded from the kiwifruit field? 9) Describe management practices used to ensure that livestock waste does not enter the growing area (pens, fences, ditches): C. Manure/Composted Manure Storage 1) Manure/composted manure applications are made as soon as possible after delivery? 2) Manure/composted manure storage sites are situated as far as practicable away from the growing area? 3) Are measures taken to prevent contamination from runoff, leaching or recontamination of treated manure? 4) Describe management practices used to prevent contamination from runoff, leaching or recontamination of treated manure (stored on concrete slab, pits, piles covered): 5

7 WORKER HEALTH AND HYGIENE 1) Have all workers that come in contact with kiwifruit gone through a formalized training program in sanitation and hygiene practices? 2) Are periodic evaluations of sanitary practices done? 3) Are refresher courses on hygiene policies and practices done? 4) Maintain documents of training programs, including attendance records signed by the employees. 5) Signs in the appropriate language(s) are posted, reminding workers of sanitation policies? 6) Are workers with any type of infectious illness or disease prohibited from handling or working around kiwifruit? 7) Are workers instructed to seek prompt treatment for cuts, abrasions and other injuries? 8) Are first aid kits available? 9) When used, gloves are clean and used appropriately? 10) Visitors coming in contact with kiwifruit are required to follow proper sanitation and hygiene practices? 11) Do workers wash their hands before work, after using the toilet facilities and after break periods? 12) Are there designated eating and smoking areas for the workers outside of the field, along with garbage containers for trash disposal? 13) Is a sufficient amount of suitably cool potable drinking water provided for all workers? 14) Are disposable cups provided for drinking purposes, along with garbage containers for trash disposal? 15) Are policies regarding worker health and sanitation practices in writing? 16) Are corrective actions taken promptly when workers fail to comply with health and sanitation policies? 17) Are measures taken to ensure that workers sourced through labor contractors and/or packing houses have gone through a formalized training program in sanitation and hygiene practices and that good agriculture practices are used while on your farm? 6

8 FIELD SANITARY FACILITIES 1) Are state and federal laws followed regarding the number, condition and placement of field sanitation facilities? 2) Are field toilet facilities placed so that they are accessible to all workers? 3) Are field toilet facilities located properly to avoid contamination in the event of leakage or runoff? 4) Is there a documented program to ensure that toilet facilities are properly supplied with toilet paper, a wash basin, potable water, liquid soap, single-use paper towels, and a waste container? 5) Are signs posted in the appropriate language(s) telling workers to wash their hands after they use the toilet? 6) Are toilet facilities and handwashing stations cleaned on a regular basis? 7) Maintain logs documenting the cleaning and maintenance of toilet facilities and handwashing stations. 8) Is there a plan in place for containment and treatment of any sewage in the event of leakage or spill? CONTAINERS AND FIELD EQUIPMENT 1) Containers that can be easily cleaned and sanitized are used whenever possible? 2) Are harvesting containers (picking bags, bins) used strictly for fresh produce and not used to transport any other items (lunches, tools, pesticides)? 3) Are picking bags collected and stored in a manner that will prevent contamination at the end of each day? 4) Are harvesting containers cleaned and sanitized as needed? 5) If bins are left in the field overnight are they protected from possible contamination (on pallets, under tarps)? 6) Are damaged or soiled containers properly repaired or disposed of? 7) Is farm equipment used to transport fruit from the field to the packing shed or storage as clean as possible? 8) Maintain logs of inspection and cleaning of containers and field equipment. 9) Are measures taken to ensure that good agricultural practices are used to minimize the risk of microbial contamination by equipment supplied by someone outside of the farm (packing house, labor contractor)? 7

9 PEST CONTROL 1) Is the growing area kept clear of waste and litter, and maintained in such a manner as to discourage the harboring of pests, rodents and reptiles? 2) Is the growing area sanitized to reduce pest populations (minimize available food/water, eliminate nesting places)? 3) Is the growing area frequently monitored to measure the effectiveness of controls? 4) Is a pest control program in place (in-house or hired) to reduce the risk of contamination by mammals, birds, reptiles, and insects? 5) Maintain a pest control log that includes dates of inspection, inspection report, and steps taken to eliminate any problems. PESTICIDE USE 1) Are all pesticide applications handled in accordance with state and federal guidelines? 2) Are the proper notice of intent and field signage followed according to state and federal laws 3) Are pesticide use reports recorded and filed with the county in which the kiwifruit is grown? 4) Does the pesticide applicator read and follow label directions on the products use label? 5) Are measures implemented to avoid spray drift onto nontarget commodities? 6) Are empty pesticide containers disposed of according to the label or state requirements? 7) Are field and applicator training programs conducted per state law? 8) Are all necessary field reentry and preharvest interval timelines followed in accordance with product label guidelines? 9) Is the water used for pesticide spray applications from a pathogen-free source? 10) Are measures taken to ensure that agricultural chemicals are not stored, loaded or mixed near water sources? 8

10 TRACEBACK 1) Is each bin of harvested kiwifruit properly identified with the date of harvest? 2) Is each bin of harvested kiwifruit properly identified with the name of the grower and the field? 3) Has the farm operation practiced a mock recall along with the packer and shipper to test the effectiveness of the traceback system? RECORD KEEPING 1) The farm operation has written policies addressing the various components of a food safety program? 2) Previous land use history is documented? 3) A map or lay-out of the farm and adjacent land has been created? 4) Records of water, soil and any fruit testing are available? 5) Records of manure applications, along with supplier information is available? 6) Records of employee training programs, along with attendance information is available? 7) Logs documenting the cleaning and maintenance of toilet facilities and handwashing stations are available? 8) Logs documenting the inspection and cleaning of containers and farm equipment are available? 9) Pest control logs are available? 10) Copies of all pesticide labeling material and safety data sheets are on file? 11) Chemical usage reports are kept? 9

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