Bountiful Blessings Farm Produce

  (Hinckley, Illinois)
Locally Grown - Quality Farm Produce at Affordable Prices
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Keeping Food Safe - GAP

This week has been exciting! I spent all day in classes on Tuesday for Illinois Department of Agriculture and USDA GAP training. GAP stands for Good Agricultural Practices. In January 2002, USDA AMS formally implemented the USDA Good Agricultural Practices & Good Handling Practices (GAP & GHP) audit verification program. This voluntary program is offered to the fruit and vegetable industry to verify an operation’s efforts to minimize the risk of contamination of fresh fruits, vegetables, and nuts by microbial pathogens. The program does not guarantee the product is free from microbial contamination, but verifies the participant has taken proactive measures to reduce the risk of contamination by adhering to generally recognized industry best practices. The responsibility for product safety and the continued observance of best practices rests with the operation producing and handling the fresh product.

At Bountiful Blessings Farm Produce, we make customer safety a top priority. I am glad that I attended the training and plan to implement the GAP practices as we move into the upcoming year. Many of the practices are already in place here on the farm.

The seed room is ready and most of our seeds are in from the suppliers. It will only be a short while and things will be rolling. Be sure to check back here every so often to learn more about what we are doing. Blessings!


GAP Practices

This week has been a whirlwind. We have been planting non-stop and getting things ready for the market season. I am so blessed to have my wife, my dad and my nephew helping me. Dad is working on the preparation area where we wash and clean the vegetables before they go to the stands or the markets. We are working hard with our GAP practices. GAP stands for Good Agricultural Practices which are a collection of principles that apply for on-farm production and post-production processes, resulting in safe and healthy food and non-food agricultural products, while taking into account economical, social and environmental sustainability. We are very consciously working to ensure safety and quality of produce in the local food chain. It is our goal to maintain high standards when it comes to cleanliness and quality. 

Tomorrow we will be back in the field planting more seed. The cucumbers and zucchini squash are going in the ground tomorrow! I am going to plant some in peat pots and some will be direct seeded. I want to experiment to see which method is better. I think it will be the direct seeded method, but I am looking forward to the results of this little test. Unfortunately, I will not be able to be in worship tomorrow as this is crunch time for planting and we only have so many hours before the next rain. I pray that your Sabbath day is blessed; that your worship is true; and that God richly bless you in this upcoming week.

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