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Northeast Center to Advance Food Safety (NECAFS)

Investigators
Newbold, Elizabeth
Institutions
University of Vermont
Start date
2021
End date
2024
Objective
This proposal outlines a plan to continue the current work of NECAFS with the addition of new activities based on stakeholder feedback and the evolving needs of our target audience. The long-term goal of NECAFS is to provide a sustainable, comprehensive food safety training, education, and technical assistance program that assists small- and mid-sized food producers and processors with FSMA compliance. Our overall objective is to sustain and nurture our established network foundation that supports a national food safety system to increase the understanding and adoption of established food safety standards, guidance, and protocols for those affected by FSMA.This proposal outlines a plan to continue the current work of NECAFS with the addition of new activities based on stakeholder feedback and the evolving needs of our target audience. The long-term goal of NECAFS is to provide a sustainable, comprehensive food safety training, education, and technical assistance program that assists small- and mid-sized food producers and processors with FSMA compliance. Our overall objective is to sustain and nurture our established network foundation that supports a national food safety system to increase the understanding and adoption of established food safety standards, guidance, and protocols for those affected by FSMA. There is a critical need to build a research, education and regulator continuous improvement framework that identifies key food safety priorities, that fosters integrated and interdisciplinary discussion, and leads to innovative and improved decision-making and action across the region. This project outlines the continued on-going activities NECAFS and incorporates a new objective to address this critical need.We will achieve these goals by pursuing the following objectives:Sustain and Nurture Established Network Foundation and Successful Programming - This objective captures the continued updates and application of the Implementation Plan; Outreach, Recruitment and Training Plan; and, Communication Plan in support of regional coordination, communication, and assessment. It also captures continued outreach and educational events among our target audience that will foster increased competence (having the knowledge) and confidence (having the ability to implement it).Build Research, Education and Regulator Continuous Improvement Framework - We will develop an integrated continuous improvement framework centered around activities that establish regular communication around research and education needs among the network throughout the year. This effort will lead to enhanced collaborations among states in the Northeast, emphasizing tailored action based on things such as common food safety concerns, commodity specific challenges, or issues identified with specific production and processing practices.Develop and Delivery Educational Programs - We will connect regulatory development and compliance requirements with science-based research and educational programs through cooperative activities between NECAFS partners, USDA, FDA, and Northeast state departments of agriculture. These activities will develop and support educational programs and resources that are consistent with FSMA guidelines. These educational programs and resources will inform technical assistance by educators and regulators in the region.National Engagement and Collaboration - We will lead coordination, communication, and assessment among regional projects, including FSOP, in furtherance of the LRCC's objectives. Additionally, we will collect, organize, and share food safety material through the Clearinghouse and publish site analytics through data visualization to inform decision-making by partners across the nation.Evaluate and Assess Progress and Impact - We will continue to implement an overall evaluation plan in accordance with our Logic Model Plan, measuring the results, outcomes and impacts of NECAFS' activities across our network and seek to compile impact narratives that illustrate the benefit of our work in the industries we serve.Sustain Good Work - We prioritize achieving sustainability and will use the developed network structure to seek future external funds in support of collaborative educational programs and research initiatives.
Funding Source
Nat'l. Inst. of Food and Agriculture
Project source
View this project
Project number
VTN-FP1376
Accession number
1027164
Categories
Bacterial Pathogens
Natural Toxins
Chemical Contaminants
Legislation and Regulations