> Wallace Center's USDA GroupGAP Primer

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Market demand for locally grown food is stronger than ever. In response to this demand, small and mid-sized farmers are scaling up their businesses and entering wholesale markets. While these farms are committed to safe production practices, it can be cumbersome and costly for them to comply with food safety requirements designed with large-scale agriculture in mind.

GroupGAP was developed in 2016 by the USDA and the Wallace Center to help farmers of all sizes meet federal regulations and wholesale food safety requirements.

The USDA GroupGAP Audit Program is a model that allows individual farmers to certify their practices together as part of a centrally-managed group, meeting the latest FSMA requirements and certifying to GAP/GHP, Harmonized GAP, or Harmonized Plus+ (GFSI Equivalent).

GroupGAP provides an umbrella of support, with the local group and participating producers addressing food safety compliance cooperatively. This reduces the administrative and financial burden placed on farmers, while ensuring that all certified farms consistently implement food safety best practices that you and your customers can trust. The system improves product traceability, facilitates faster corrective action, and creates transparency at every stage from the farm to your store.

Read this primer to learn all about USDA GroupGAP.