The Ohio State University Fruit and Vegetable Safety Team

The OSU Fruit and Vegetable Safety Team educates growers of fresh produce about Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) and Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA)-Fresh Produce Safety Rules. We strive to ensure a strong scientific basis behind the best practices taught and recommended by our team, provide helpful tools and resources to develop risk assessments and food safety plans for the farm, and promote high-quality, safe produce from Ohio growers.

The OSU Fruit and Vegetable Safety Team was formed as a result of requests from producers for food safety education programs.  These initial programs demonstrated a need for outreach activities focused on fresh produce safety and led to an Excellence in Engagement Grant that enabled us to expand our educational programs statewide. Today our interdisciplinary team consists of OSU faculty, State Extension Specialists, Extension Educators, and Field Specialists.  Team members conduct research to improve best management practices, deliver food safety trainings and provide support for developing and implementing food safety plans. In 2015 and 2016 we trained 1257 fresh produce growers on GAPs and 92 growers on FSMA-Fresh Produce Rules.


  1. How COVID19 Affects the Safety of Your Fresh Produce

    Mar 16, 2020

    By Drs. Sanja Ilic and Melanie Lewis Ivey

    Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses whose members cause the common cold, but also more severe illnesses like Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), all of which can infect both humans and animals, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). COVID-19 is the new coronavirus that causes symptoms that include fever, coughing, shortness of breath, breathing difficulties and other, and range from mild to severe respiratory illness. Advanced age, or conditions such as various cancers, chronic pulmonary diseases, asthma, heart disease and even diabetes, are associated with an increased severity of COVID-19 infections and higher fatality rates.

  2. Greenhouse Management Workshop: Sustainable & Safe Crop Production

    Oct 24, 2019

    The OSU CFAES presents a Greenhouse Management Workshop focusing on Sustainable & Safe Crop Production. This two-day workshop includes numerous sessions, 2 tours, and the option for achieving GAPs Certification. The schedule for both days is as follows:

    DAY ONE:

    Session 1: Fundamentals in Climate Control to Assure Crop Production

    Greenhouse Temperature and Humidity Management, Peter Ling, OSU

    Greenhouse Lighting, Chieri Kubota, OSU

  3. Beth Scheckelhoff showing two students a chicken

    Meet Our Team Members: Beth Sheckelhoff

    Sep 21, 2019

    This month's Team Member Spotlight is on Beth Scheckelhoff, Ph.D. Beth has been a part of The Ohio State University as an Extension Educator for 14 years and has been a member of the produce safety team since 2015.

    Beth teaches produce safety topics to greenhouse and field vegetable producers as well as urban gardeners and community groups in NW Ohio. Teaching topics range from good agricultural practices, implementing the FSMA Produce Safety Rule, developing Farm Food Safety Plans, and conducting mock walk-throughs for GAPs certification.