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Good Agricultural Practices Educational Resources

Plant Marketing

Self Audit Resources

These resources are provided during the GAP Training Class and are available here for your convenience.

Good Agricultural Practices Self Audit workbook (UC Davis) (pdf)
Accompanying Worksheets

Food Safety Begins on the Farm: A Grower Self Assessment of Food Safety Risks (Cornell University) (pdf)

General Information

Guide to Minimize Microbial Food Safety Hazards for Fresh Fruits and Vegetables U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Food and Drug Administration Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) October, 1998

Reduce Microbial Contamination with Good Agricultural Practices (pdf) Pamphlet with basic information on GAP best practices from Cornell University

Key Points of Control and Management of Microbial Food Safety for Growers, Packers, and Handlers of Fresh-Consumed Horticultural Products (pdf)
Pamphlet with basic information on GAP University of California - Davis

University of California - Davis Vegetable Information Research GAP Resource Page

Product Specific Publications (all publications are .pdf)

Sweet Potoato, Carrots and Root Crops
Cabbage and Leafy Greens,
Cucumbers, Eggplant, Squash, Peppers and Sweet Corn
Green Beans and Peas

Review of Specific Standards

With there being no federal or state GAP regulations there is sometimes difficulty on what exact standards should be met. This chart summarizes the guidelines published by a number of varying entities. This should give producers an idea of some specific standards that are in use in the industry.

The Appendix expands the information in the chart, and the accompanying Narrative offers background information. Consult with your auditor on what specifc standards apply.

Farm Safety Manual

Once you have completed the GAP training and reviewed your farm operation the next step is to create a Farm Safety Manual. This manual explains your farm operation in detail and is utilized by the farmer and the auditor. No two manuals will be alike as every farm operation is different.

USDA Sample Farm Safety Manual

Michigan State University created a manual for their producers to utilize to complete their Farm Safety Manuals. The 2010 version can be accessed here or as an editable Word document. For growers who used the previously available 2009 version here is the list of changes for 2010

University of Minnesota also created a similar resource for growers: FSP4U - A Food Safety Plan for You available from or as an editable Word document .

The Standard Operating Procedures as shown in the sample Farm Safety Plan, referenced above, can be accomplished online by utilizing a resource created by Primus Labs. Primus Labs, a third party auditor, has available on their website a “Food Safety Manual Development Program“ free of charge that helps producers write the food safety manual. Interested producers should contact Adam Watson (contact info bottom of page) for more information on this resource.

An additional resource is from Penn State is a farm safety plan template and a GAP manual for growers.
North Carolina State University has developed an excellent resource for constructing a manual in Word and in pdf.
They also publish the NC Fresh Produce Safety Blog that would be of interest to most growers

Auditor Specifc Checklists and Guidelines

The completed manual should address the areas that are scored by an auditor. As a producer creates the farm manual they should refernce the checklists or guidelines of their specific auditor; each auditor currently creates their own standards.

Primus has their checklists and guidelines available here
NSF-Agriculture {formerly NSF-Davis Fresh}has their audit criteria and documents available here
USDA has its checklist available here.
Other auditing companies exist and they can provide the specifc guidelines, checklists, and criteria.


One component of GAP is the need to post signs relating to hygiene, first aid, etc. These items can be purchased, but there are also numerous free resources available, or you can make your own.

New Mexico State University has available for download a PowerPoint Presentation with numerous signs that can be printed. If you don’t have PowerPoint you may want to try downloading PowerPoint viewer free from Microsoft.

English/Spanish how to hand washing poster (color) (black & white)

Record keeping

Farmers face the task of keeping adequate records to show that they are following the practices they established in their farm safety manual. To that end, there are examples of record sheets in the Michigan State, and University of Minnesota resources; there are additional examples online. Growers may also create their own records templates to use in their operation just be certain to include a sample in the farm safety manual.

Sample record keeping sheets from Cornell University, for worker training, field sanitation unit service, processing/packing water, water treatment, pest/rodent control, cooler temp, truck checklist, illness/injury reporting, first aid kit monitoring, manure applications, surface water testing, mock traceback and visitors..

Employee Training

Good Worker Health and Hygiene Practices: Training Manual for Produce Handlers. Intended for use by growers in designing trainings for their employees in handling fresh produce. Includes suggestions for points to stress in training and what growers can do to help their employees stay safe and hygienic.


If there is a need to translate any materials, resources are available through the KDA.

Cultivate Kentucky Technical Assistance for Farmers

Cultivate Kentucky Senior Extension Associate Bryan Brady, facilitates one on one consultation on federal and private food safety regulations.  Mr. Brady works directly with wholesale-ready producers to prepare and successfully complete third party food safety audits, federal food safety certifications, and enrollment in wholesale distribution systems. For more information go to The Food Connection @ UK website or contact Bryan at:

Bryan Brady

Cultivate Kentucky Senior Extension Associate




Other Resources

Cornell has numerous GAP materials for sale including training DVDs, signs, and other resources.

For more information, or questions, please contact:

GAP Resources Program
Josh Lindau, Produce Marketing Specialist
111 Corporate Drive, Frankfort, KY 40601
Office (502) 782-4115