US: Sprout Safety Alliance launches website
Posted: June 26th, 2012 - 10:35am
Source: The Packer
Four months into its $100,000 yearlong federal grant, the Sprout Safety Alliance has a website and is recruiting people to help develop best practices materials for sprout growers.
Food and Drug Administration officials announced the alliance Feb. 28, saying it is similar to other public-private alliances for seafood, juice, produce and preventive controls set up by the agency. It created the Produce Safety Alliance in 2010 and the Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance in 2011.
Officials said earlier this year the alliance would launch its website in April or May, with new educational materials anticipated shortly thereafter. The site launched June 15.
The Sprout Safety Alliance is based at the Illinois Institute of Technology’s Institute for Food Safety and Health. Its coordinator is Stephen Grove, an assistant professor of microbiology.
According to the institute’s website, Grove’s research expertise includes fresh and fresh-cut produce safety; cross-contamination of enteric viruses during fresh produce washing and food service procedures; and use of novel processing techniques and antimicrobial sanitizers to improve fresh-cut produce washing.
Along with Grove, three other “organizing members” appointed by FDA have been working to define the structure and goals of the alliance. They are: Joy Johanson, consumer safety officer for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Center for Food Safety and Nutrition; Tong-Jen Fu, research scientist from CFSAN; and Jane Reick, food safety inspection unit chief for the California Department of Public Health.
The alliance is seeking industry volunteers for two working groups. Those interested in volunteering can sign up on the alliance website: http://tinyurl.com/SproutSafety.