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MSU sets training for farmers' market vendors
MISSISSIPPI STATE – The General Food Safety Training and Acidified Canned Foods Training for farmers’ market vendors will be held March 13 in Pontotoc, March 15 in Gulfport and March 20 in Brookhaven.
Canning salsa, pickles and other acidified foods for sale in Mississippi-certified farmers’ markets requires special training and certification. The General Food Safety Training will address food handling, hygiene, fresh-cut fruits and vegetables and temperature of sampled foods. The Acidified Canned Foods Training covers state and federal food processing regulations, facility requirements, sanitation, principles of thermal processing and the microbiology of acidified foods.
The one-day training is hosted by Mississippi State University’s Department of Food Science, Nutrition and Health Promotion and the Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce.
In Pontotoc, registered participants will meet at the Pontotoc County Extension office. In Gulfport, the workshop will be held at the Harrison County Extension office. In Brookhaven, the workshop will be held at the Chamber of Commerce.
Sign-in begins at 8 a.m. The General Farmer’s Market Food Safety Training is from 8:15 to 9:45 a.m. This training is free of charge, but registration is required.
The Acidified Canned Foods Training is from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Participants must register and pay the $100 fee at least one week before the training. The fee includes materials, a certificate, refreshments and lunch.
Participants may bring samples of their products for free preliminary pH testing. They also can bring their recipes for free and confidential product development assistance.
Individuals who complete the entire training and receive a satisfactory score on the exam will be certified to process and sell acidified canned foods in Mississippi-certified farmers’ markets. This certification does not permit these products to be sold in other retail locations or shipped out of state.
To register, go to http://www.fsnhp.msstate.edu/farmersmarkettraining. For more information, contact Anna Hood at (662) 325-8056 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
These trainings are supported by MSU’s Extension Service, the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Specialty Crop Block Grant Program.