New Castle County Master Gardener training offered

December 15, 2010 under CANR News, Cooperative Extension, Events

Delaware Cooperative Extension in New Castle County is now accepting applications for Master Gardener volunteer educator training. Training will run Tuesday and Thursday mornings starting March 3, 2011, and continue through May 24, 2011.

Carrie Murphy, Master Gardener program coordinator, Cooperative Extension Services, said of the program, “This training program is designed to make good educators out of good gardeners. Trainees pledge to devote volunteer time to help Cooperative Extension provide research-based information to the gardening public. Without this volunteer program, we could not reach nearly as many people as we do now.”

Training will consist of horticultural and educational topics, with emphasis on hands-on experience and active learning techniques.

There is a training fee of $150. Scholarships are available based on financial need. The application deadline is Jan. 10, 2011.

Details on the Master Gardener program, training, and application materials are available on the Master Gardener website, or by email or phone request to Carrie Murphy, at [cjmurphy@udel.edu] or (302) 831-2506.

This article is also available online on UDaily.

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Food safety training offered to potential on-farm food entrepreneurs on April 3

March 11, 2010 under CANR News

Dr. Sue Snider, University of Delaware Cooperative Extension, will provide food safety training for potential on-farm food entrepreneurs who wish to produce non-potentially hazardous foods in their licensed on-farm kitchen. The eight hour training will be held at the Delaware Department of Agriculture on Saturday, April 3, 2010 from 8:30 AM to 5:30 PM. Beverages will be provided. Participants are asked to bring their own lunch.

Participants must complete eight hours of training and pass a written test on the materials presented in order to receive a certificate and be eligible to have their on-farm kitchen inspected and licensed.

As a result of training in food safety, participants will be able to:
• Identify potentially hazardous and non-potentially hazardous foods,
• Appreciate foodborne pathogens and understand ways to control them,
• Apply basic principles to reduce the risk of foodborne illness
• Evaluate their plan for controlling potential microbial problems in their operation, and
• Understand requirements of the regulations for farm produced non-potentially hazardous food items.

In January 2006, Delaware’s regulations governing “On-Farm Home Processing of Non-Potentially Hazardous Foods” were adopted. Farmers who wish to process non-potentially hazardous foods in their on-farm home kitchens for sale to the public at farmers’ markets, on-farm markets, or roadside stands must abide by these regulations. These regulations established standards of practice for on-farm home food processing operations that safeguard public health and provide consumers with food that is safe, unadulterated, and honestly presented.

The regulations provide definitions, define operator qualifications, and establish operation food safety and physical facility requirements. Non-potentially hazardous foods include:
• Baked breads, cakes, muffins, or cookies with a water activity of .85 or less;
• Candy (non-chocolate);
• Containerized fruit preparations consisting of jellies, jams, preserves, marmalades, and fruit butters with an equilibrated pH of 4.6 or less or a water activity of 0.85 or less;
• Fruit pies with an equilibrated pH of 4.6 or less;
• Herbs in vinegar with an equilibrated pH of 4.6 or less;
• Honey and herb mixtures;
• Dried fruit and vegetables;
• Spices or herbs
• Maple syrup and sorghum
• Snack items such as popcorn, caramel corn, and peanut brittle
• Roasted nuts

Under the regulations, potential on-farm food entrepreneurs will be required to have eight hours of food safety training and have their farm kitchens inspected.

Copies of these regulations and applications are available on the Delaware Department of Agriculture website: www.dda.delaware.gov

On-farm kitchens will be inspected by appointment.

For more information, to register for the training, or to receive a copy of the regulations, please call or e-mail Sheree Nichols at the Delaware Department of Agriculture:
Phone: (800) 282-8685 (DE only) or (302) 698-4521
E-Mail: sheree.nichols@state.de.us

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Food safety training offered to potential on-farm food entrepreneurs

January 14, 2010 under CANR News, Cooperative Extension, Events

Dr. Sue Snider, University of Delaware Cooperative Extension, will provide food safety training for potential on-farm food entrepreneurs during a two-session, eight hour training that will be held at the Delaware Department of Agriculture on the following dates:

February 11, 2010 February 18, 2010
6:00 P.M. – 10:00 P.M. 6:00 P.M. – 10:00 P.M.

Participants must complete eight hours of training and pass a written test on the materials presented in order to receive a certificate.

As a result of training in food safety, participants will be able to: Identify potentially and non-potentially hazardous foods, Appreciate foodborne pathogens and understand ways to control them, Apply the basic principles to reduce the risk of foodborne illness Evaluate your plan for controlling potential microbial problems in your operation, and Understand requirements of the new regulations for farm produced food items.

In January 2006, Delaware’s new regulations governing “On-Farm Home Processing of Non-Potentially Hazardous Foods” were adopted. Farmers who wish to process non-potentially hazardous foods in their on-farm home kitchens for sale to the public at farmers’ markets, on-farm markets, or roadside stands must abide by these regulations.

These regulations established standards of practice for on-farm home food processing operations that safeguard public health and provide consumers with food that is safe, unadulterated, and honestly presented.

The regulations provide definitions, define operator qualifications, and establish operation food safety and physical facility requirements. Non-potentially hazardous foods include: Baked breads, cakes, muffins, or cookies with a water activity of .85 or less; Candy (non-chocolate); Containerized fruit preparations consisting of jellies, jams, preserves, marmalades, and fruit butters with an equilibrated pH of 4.6 or less or a water activity of 0.85 or less; Fruit pies with an equilibrated pH of 4.6 or less; Herbs in vinegar with an equilibrated pH of 4.6 or less; Honey and herb mixtures; Dried fruit and vegetables; Spices or herbs Maple syrup and sorghum Snack items such as popcorn, caramel corn, and peanut brittle Roasted nuts.

Under the regulations, potential on-farm food entrepreneurs will be required to have eight hours of food safety training and have their farm kitchens inspected.

Copies of these regulations and applications are available on the Delaware Department of Agriculture website.

On-farm kitchens will be inspected by appointment.

For more information, to register for the training, or to receive a copy of the regulations, please call or e-mail Sheree Nichols at the Delaware Department of Agriculture: Phone: (800) 282-8685 (DE only) or (302) 698-4521
E-Mail: sheree.nichols@state.de.us.

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