Earlier this week it was brought to our attention that a vendor in Lake County was cited by the local board of health for selling “washed” vegetables and greens. The local health department official was enforcing a new interpretation of food safety rules that assumed washing greens with water was “food processing” and a farmer who was not a licensed “processor” washing them was making an “adulterated” (unsafe) product. The following article was brought to our attention: http://wholefoodusa.wordpress.com/2009/07/12/alert-ohio-farm-food-and-health-alert/
The Ohio Farmers Market Management Network (FMMN) wants to encourage accurate interpretation of food safety rules by local agencies. In this effort, we have contacted the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) and they have been very responsive.
We would like to hear from you.
Are there any other issues that you are seeing in your Markets on a regular basis that need to go on that discussion list? We will take these concerns to our talks with the ODA.
Please send us a detailed account of the incident, your name and phone number, the name of the vendor, the county, the enforcing agency and agent name if possible,the farmers market and date where it occurred. Email it to us via FMMN Secretary or place a public comment on this page using the comment feature below. Please include the county and as many details as you can.
Renee Hunt of OEFFA (Ohio Ecological Food & Farm Association) made a similar call for comments in their email discussion forum on August 24th. Some responses to that list can be viewed below.