Story in Brief
Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) is a voluntary audit that verifies that fruits and vegetables are produced, packed, handled and stored as safely as possible to minimize risk of microbial food safety hazards. Following this training, producers will be able to implement best practices as it relates to worker health and hygiene as well as field sanitation and hygiene that would minimize risk of microbial food safety hazards. The Dougherty County Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources agent reached out to Fort Valley Extension Agriculture Agent housed in Dougherty County to co-sponsor such a program. They delivered the Demystifying the Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) Audit training program at Fort Valley State University. Most of the 20 producers had none to moderate knowledge and understanding of a USDA GAP Audit prior to this training. After the training, all the producers had good to excellent knowledge and understanding of the audit. Because of this program some producers plan to adopt handwashing stations, better recordkeeping and GAP practices on their farm, write down everything, plan on creating documents to be GAP ready, and some plan to use all of the practices shared.