IFLR partners with MSU Extension to offer online FSMA Produce Rule Grower Training

IFLR is offering an online graduate course on FSMA's Produce Safety Rule. Students may also complete their Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training. The course begins August 26, 2024.

Apples in a produce processing plant.

IFLR is partnering with MSU Extension to teach an online course on the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule this fall semester, 2024.   

Students have the option earn a Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) Grower Training Certificate in addition to their usual graduate-level academic credit.   

The course will be taught by IFLR’s Kris DeAngelo and Phillip Tocco of MSU Extension will deliver the PSA Grower Training component.   

Students participating in the PSA certificate component must:  

  1. Pay $65 for the PSA grower's manual by August 2, 2024. This purchase is mandatory per PSA policy. Click here to order the book.   
  2. Attend online Zoom sessions on Monday nights at 6:00 pm (Eastern Daylight Time) for 8-10 weeks. PSA requires 100% attendance at modules.  
  3. Pay a $35 admin fee at the end of the course. IFLR will forward the payment to PSA for the certificate (a link will be provided near the end of the course).   

The course will cover both regulatory and practical aspects of produce safety. The Grower Training content is designed to provide a foundation of Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) emphasizing food safety and environmental management goals, while outlining the requirements mandated in FSMA.  Students will learn how to identify and reduce risks by drafting farm food safety plans.  The focus from farm to fork enhances overall marketplace safety. Topic areas include worker health and hygiene, soil amendments, water quality in pre-harvest and post-harvest environments, crop inputs, wildlife and domesticated animals, land use, and FSMA issues related to produce.  

This course also prepares food industry professionals to take on regulatory leadership within their organizations by providing an overview of the legislative and regulatory processes through an in-depth look at the relationship between the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), industry, consumer interest groups, and scientific communities. Students will learn the major provisions of the rule, evaluate FDA’s limitations, examine current issues in food law, and explore the intersection of science and law.  

All reading assignments will be available as downloads within the modules, via URLs, or through the Produce Safety Alliance grower training manual.  

Topics covered include the following:  

  • Overview of FSMA  
  • Introduction to Produce Safety and Risk Assessment for Public Health  
  • Worker Health, Hygiene and Training Practices  
  • Soil Amendments  
  • Wildlife, Domesticated Animals, and Land Use  
  • Agricultural Water, Production Water, and Post-Harvest Water  
  • Post-Harvest Handling and Sanitation  
  • How to Develop a Farm Food Safety Plan  
  • Standards for the Growing, Harvesting, Packing, and Holding of Produce for Human Consumption  
  • Covered Facilities and Variances  
  • Withdrawal of a Qualified Facility Exemption  
  • Compliance and Enforcement  

Who should take this course?   

  • Food industry professionals who need a deep understanding of how produce is grown, harvested, packed, held, and regulated in the US.   
  • Food industry professionals responsible for meeting their organization’s compliance with FSMA rules.  
  • Food industry professionals who wish to become the "go to" person on FSMA within their organization.  

How much time should I expect to commit to this course?  

  • This is a graduate level, 3-credit hour course. Students will typically spend 9-12 hours per week preparing for and completing coursework. Some students may need more or less time based on their skills, experience, and the level of mastery they wish to achieve.   
  • Students completing the Grower Training will complete the requirements within the regular time commitment required for this graduate course.  

How much does the course cost?  

  • Tuition for non-Michigan residents, including international residents, is $3,411.00 USD per 3-credit course (for 2024-2025 academic year).
  • Tuition for Michigan residents is $2,679.00 USD per 3-credit course (for 2024-2025 academic year).   
  • Non-credit participants pay $1,895 USD per IFLR course.  
  • Tuition is subject to an annual increase in June/July of each year.  
  • Students who choose to complete the Grower Training must purchase the training manual for $50 plus shipping through the PSA and pay a $35 PSA certificate fee at the end of the course.   

When is this course offered?  

This course is offered every other year, in the fall semester of even numbered years. Class begins on August 26 and ends on December 13, 2024.  

How to enroll:  

MSU campus and Lifelong Education students enroll using course code FSC 853 and MSU College of Law Global Food Law students enroll using course code LAW 810X.  


Learn about enrollment at https://www.canr.msu.edu/iflr/enroll/ or email iflr@msu.edu with questions.  

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