Food Safety Training Opportunities

Fruits and Vegetables

The National Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) Program and the Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) both offer produce safety courses. The GAPs Online Produce Safety Course helps students improve their understanding of GAPs to guide risk assessment and implementation of practices to reduce risks on fresh produce farms. In-person GAPs Trainings are multi-day and include the PSA Grower Training curriculum and a Farm Food Safety Plan Writing Workshop

The Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) offers both Grower Training and Train-the-Trainer Courses. The PSA Grower Training is one way to satisfy the FDA's Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule requirement outlined in § 112.22(c) that requires ‘At least one supervisor or responsible party for your farm must have successfully completed food safety training at least equivalent to that received under standardized curriculum recognized as adequate by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.’ The PSA Train-the-Trainer is a two-day course intended for produce safety educators and others who work with fruit and vegetable growers who are interested in becoming PSA Trainers or PSA Lead Trainers.

Most produce growers will utilize GAPs during growing, harvesting, and packing to reduce microbial risks on the farm. However, some growers, who expand their operations to include value-added activities such as minimal processing, are required to engage in Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs). GMPs ensure the safety of processed foods. The Institute for Food Safety at Cornell University offers an online GMPs course, which provides produce growers and processors with an efficient way to understand the GMP requirements in the FDA’s FSMA Preventive Controls for Human Food Rule (21 CFR Part 117, Subpart B) and how they might incorporate GMPs into their operations.

Course Links

Dairy Foods

The Dairy Foods Extension program offers training in dairy production and processing as well as regulatory requirements. The Dairy Foods Extension certificate program provides training for dairy food industry professionals to better prepare them to produce safe, quality dairy products. The course links below will take you to descriptions of the courses offered within the certificate program.

To see a complete list of upcoming courses, please view the Dairy Foods Extension training calendar.

    Course Links
    2022 Dairy Foods Extension Course Catalog

    The 2022 Course Catalog is a comprehensive handbook and directory that provides a program description, information about the Dairy Foods Certificate Program, faculty and extension staff contact information, courses being offered this year, and information on how to register for courses.

    Food Processing, Packing, and Manufacturing

    The Cornell Food Venture Center (CFVC) in Geneva and New York City offers services, outreach and research development opportunities in four critical areas: business and product process development, product safety, process/product technology transfer and product commercialization. The CFVC offers Better Process Control Schools (BPCS) to certify supervisors of thermal processing systems, acidification, and container closure evaluation programs for low-acid and acidified canned foods. Each processor of low-acid or acidified foods must operate with a certified supervisor on hand at all times during processing. The course is divided into two sections: acidified foods and low-acid foods.

    The Dairy Foods Extension program offers a specialty course on pathogen environmental monitoring, which focuses on pathogens of concern and the importance of environmental sampling programs. During the course, potential sources of contamination are discussed and control steps outlined. Participants work in small groups to develop an Environmental Monitoring Plan and discuss mitigation steps and corrective actions to control microbial contamination in food processing facilities. 

    The IFS@CU has recently updated its Good Manufacturing Practices Online Course, which covers the requirements of 21 CFR Part 117 – Current Good Manufacturing Practice, Hazard Analysis, and Risk-Based Preventive Controls for Human Food. It addresses the revisions made to the previous regulation, 21 CFR 110, as part of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).

    Course Links

    Craft Beverages

    ​​​​​​The Cornell Craft Beverage Institute (CCBI) offers training and programs for the craft beverage industry to help winemakers and cider makers make important decisions from fruit sourcing and fermentation techniques to quality assurance and regulatory compliance. They offer the EnoCert certification program for winery employees or wine making amateurs.

    Course Links

    Food Science Extension

    2022 Course Catalog

    The 2022 Course Catalog is a comprehensive handbook and directory that provides program descriptions, faculty and extension staff contact information, courses being offered this year, and information on how to register for courses.

    2022 Course Catalog Cover

    Fee-Based Services

    IFS@CU collaborating programs offer fee-based services to support the food industry, from farm to fork, in reducing foodborne illness risks.

    Services Offered by Program:

    Cornell Food Venture Center

    The Cornell Food Venture Center (CFVC), located in Geneva and New York City, offers services, outreach and research development opportunities in four critical areas: business and product process development, product safety, process/product technology transfer and product commercialization.

    Services
    • Client registration
    • Laboratory analysis only
    • Analysis and review only
    • Scheduled process
    • Scheduled process for meat
    • Scheduled process versions
    • Amendments/versions
    • Amendments/versions for meat
    • Document reevaluation
    • Vacuum pack letter/hazard analysis
    • Heat penetration study
    • Classification/shelf life letter
    Contact

    To schedule services, contact the Cornell Food Venture Center.

     

    Cornell Food Venture Center Pilot Plant

    Based in Geneva, NY, the Cornell Food Venture Center Pilot Plant is a unique processing facility designed for food businesses of all sizes to facilitate product development and scale up new or optimized food products. They can tailor each process workflow and product, help to identify next steps in the commercialization process, and assist with selecting processes and equipment that are ultimately transferable to a manufacturing or co-packing facility.

    Services
    • Food and beverage product development and processing
    Contact

    Dairy Foods Extension

    In addition to providing training programs for dairy production and processing, the Dairy Foods Extension program serves as a Dairy Process Authority and operates a Food Processing and Development Laboratory (FPDL). The FPDL facility is a licensed NY State dairy plant. On a scale that mimics real production, the FPDL can manufacture test runs or new formulations, produce consumer samples, and perform shelf-life testing.

    Services
    • Dairy process review and validation for dairy products
    • Dairy foods product development and processing
    Contact

    To schedule services, contact Dairy Foods Extension Program Services.

      Food Safety Laboratory and Milk Quality Improvement Program

      The Food Safety Laboratory and Milk Quality Improvement Program's mission is to improve the microbial safety and quality of the global food supply through innovative research, education and outreach. The Laboratory for Molecular Typing (LMT) follows PulseNet’s standard protocols, but is not a member of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) PulseNet system.

      Services
      • Pulsed Field Gel Electrophoresis (PFGE) produces high quality, reproducible genetic fingerprints for pathogenic organisms.
      • Whole Genome Sequencing includes short read trimming and quality control, followed by de novo genome assembly and quality control.
      • Additional Whole Genome Sequencing Analyses include high quality whole genome annotation, detection of presence/absence of genes of interest (e.g. antimicrobial resistance, virulence, metabolic pathway genes) and analysis of their variability.
      • Under the Fluid Milk Voluntary Shelf-Life Program, fluid milk products produced at each plant are collected and subjected to shelf-life studies. Analyses include: chemical (freezing point and fat determination), microbiological (standard plate count and coliform count), and sensory evaluation.
      Contact

      Cornell Craft Beverage Institute

      In addition to training and workshops, the Cornell Craft Beverage Institute offers services through the Cornell Craft Beverage Analytical Lab. The Cornell Craft Beverage Analytical Lab offers chemical, microbiological and sensory analyses of juice, wine, cider, beer, and distillates for quality assurance, troubleshooting and regulatory compliance.

      Services
      • IR Wine Scan-Only for 100% grape-based wines
      • Acidity: Acetic Acid (volatile acidity)
      • Acidity: pH
      • Acidity: Organic acids
      • Acidity: Titratable acidity
      • Alcohol: Ethanol
      • Bottle Sterility
      • Carbon Dioxide Analysis
      • Cold Stability (tartrate)
      • Dryness Scale
      • Heat Stability (protein)
      • Sensory appraisal
      • Sorbate
      • Sugars: Residual Sugar (glucose and fructose)
      • ​Sulfur: Free Sulfur Dioxide (SO2)
      • Sulfur: Total Sulfur Dioxide (SO2)
      • Trace Elements: Copper, Potassium, Calcium, and Iron
      • Consultation
      • Export Analysis
      • Alcohol: Ethanol- Distillates & Kombucha
      • Alcohol: Ethanol- Non-Beverage Foods
      • Alcohol: Methanol (distillates)
      • Acetic Acid (kombucha)
      • Sugars: Residual Sugar (kombucha)
      Contact

      To schedule services, contact the Cornell Craft Beverage Analytical Lab.

      High Pressure Processing Validation Center

      The High Pressure Processing (HPP) Validation Center is a cutting-edge research facility that uses HPP, a non-thermal alternative to thermal pasteurization, and offers customized services. The HPP is located in a Biosafety Level 2 facility, which enables the center to work with pathogens. As a result, samples tested are NOT permitted to be consumed and the samples must be retained in the facility until disposal.

      Services
      • Validation studies provide the pressure and time capable of achieving a 5-log reduction in pathogen activity.
      • Physiochemical evaluations provide information on the color, texture and product quality, following HPP treatment of the packaged, un-inoculated product at varying pressures for varying times, or at the pressure/time combination showing a 5-log reduction of pathogens for that product.
      • Shelf life studies provide microbiological evaluation for spoilage bacteria, yeast and molds following HPP treatment of the packaged, un-inoculated product at varying pressures for varying times or the pressure/time combination showing a 5-log reduction of pathogens for that product.
      Contact

      To schedule services, contact the HPP Validation Center.

      Microbial Food Extension Lab

      The Microbial Food Extension Lab focuses on microbial food safety and quality concerns associated with fruit and vegetable products, sanitation during fruit and vegetable production, and beverage plant sanitation.

      Services
      • Shelf-life Study
      • Accelerated Shelf-life Study
      • Challenge Studies
      • Total Aerobic Plate Count
      • Yeast & Mold
      • Revalidation/validation of UV Tubes
      • Other tests as requested
      Contact

      To schedule services, contact the Microbial Food Extension Lab.

      Cornell Sensory Evaluation Center

      The Cornell Sensory Evaluation Center conducts Sensory Evaluation and Consumer Product Research.  They help businesses develop and improve their consumer product offerings through consumer and sensory testing.

      Services
      • Consumer Acceptability, Preference and Discrimination Testing
      • Consultations in all matters related to sensory product testing such as appropriateness of particular test method, study sample size, questionnaire design, statistics and analyses, and sample blinding and serving sizes
      Contact

      To schedule services, contact the Cornell Sensory Evaluation Center.