Grower's Manual: A Template for Grower Cooperatives

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2011-10-01
Authors
Hamilton, Joanna
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Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture
The Leopold Center is a research and education center on the campus of Iowa State University created to identify and reduce negative environmental and social impacts of farming and develop new ways to farm profitably while conserving natural resources.
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Abstract

This Grower’s Manual was originally developed by GROWN Locally, a producer cooperative in northeast Iowa, to establish standards for pre ‐ and post ‐ harvest practices and the product specifications used with local foodservice establishments. Adhering to these methods and standards allowed GROWN Locally’s growers to pass their internal audit, and their facility to be GHP certified.

In July 2011, the Manual was purchased by the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture and revised and reformatted to serve as a model for other cooperatives and regional food systems groups. The revision process included a review of Extension, state, and federal food safety publications and consultation with ISU Extension specialists to ensure that the manual calls for science ‐ based best practices that comply with current regulations.

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