I finally got a chance to try to bring the website up to date. All notes from weekly webinars are posted on the Events page corresponding to the weekly Session. Each Session also has a Draft of the document from the previous week. The Resources page has links to both the document we are working on and the Primary Production DRAFT which we are soliciting commentary and feedback on. The Timeline has been updated and it is my hope that on October 2 we may move into the final sections on Transportation and Training.
In late July, a dedicated group of individuals from industry, academic and regulatory sectors, completed the first DRAFT of Primary Prodcution sections of National Cantaloupe Guidance. Many people participated in the 16 developmental webinars, held weekly, to discuss and develop langauge that will provide guidance for the safe production and harvest of cantaloupes.
Tomorrow, July 24th, 2012 is the last scheduled webinar for the development of national cantaloupe guidance. The working group may complete the first draft of sections for "Primary Production" which will provide a document for broader circulation and expert review.
Participants and facilitators on the call will need to discuss - next steps - and how we continue to work on the document to carry preventive practices beyond the production setting and into packing, transportation and other unit operations.
The working group is almost through with the sections covering the Primary Production of cantaloupes and other netted melons. These sections should be complete before the end of July and available for broader review, refinement and feedback (although they are constantly available for feedback and review - a concentrated effort to solicit outside review and feedback is anticipated).
On June 19th prgress was made as the working group discussed and moved through several topics on chemicals, equipment, sanitation and worker hygiene. To review the progress to date please visit the Events pages and look for notes from last week and an agenda for the coming webinar. To review the current DRAFT you can visit the resources pages or click here.
This week the working group discussed agricultural chemicals and determined that language relating to use and safety of agricultral chemicals was important despite the fact that there is a wide and established body of law regulating ag chem use in the United States and within individual states. While the language is still being perfected this decision reflects that the scope of the document will extend beyond microbial food safety issues.
During today’s facilitated webinar we waded back into water and a discussion of how to ensure the integrity of this key input in a production setting. The working group discussed water for irrigation, as a diluent and for dust abatement as well as its potential use in a harvest setting/operation. Should these discrete uses require varying (microbial) qualities of water? This will remain under discussion and as a facilitator I am certain we will continue to review and refine these sections while we simultaneously move on to other issues. To check in on where the
Last week the working group began with a review of the prior work on environmental assessments and began discussions relating to "Primary Production". Primary production focuses on the growing of cantaloupes (field activity) and will include many facets of the growing cycle including key inputs and cultural practices. Last week there was significant discussion related to the hygienic best practices employed to prevent ground spots. On May 22, 2012 the working group will begin to discuss water used in the primary production environment.