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Health

Vertical farming partners focus on COVID-19 tests

PlantForm Corporation is working with Canadian and international partners on two initiatives that will use the company’s plant-based biopharmaceutical platform to address the global COVID-19 crisis, including the development of Canada’s first antibody test for COVID-19 immunity, and the production of…

Growing local crops with skilled labour critical during times of crisis

I’m the fourth generation of my family to live and work here on E Z Grow Farms in Norfolk County, named for my grandfather Ed Zamecnik who started the farm in 1935. We’re Ontario’s largest commercial wholesale producer of high bush blueberries; selling into large Ontario grocery stores with our products…

Handling COVID-19 on produce farms and in packinghouses

While there is no evidence that the COVID-19 virus is a food safety concern, it is a worker health concern as it spreads via close person-to-person contact or by contact with contaminated surfaces. Food does not appear to be a likely cause of COVID-19 transmission, but many of the same practices used to…

Naktuinbouw and measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus

In an interview, John van Ruiten, director at Naktuinbouw (the Dutch inspection service for horticulture), explained in an interview what the Naktuinbouw does to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and what it means for testing samples in the laboratory.  Their inspection activities at companies are scheduled…

The measures implemented are outlined in six languages

Almeria's greenhouses implement health protocols against the coronavirus

The Association of Fruit and Vegetable Producer Organizations of Almería (Coexphal), which brings together 83 firms that account for 65% of this sector's volume in the province, has announced that Almería's fruit and vegetable companies have started to implement sanitary prevention and action protocols…

Protecting yourself and your farm employees from COVID-19

Agricultural operations are part of the national food production and distribution system and deemed critical to the United States infrastructure. Because livestock operations are on-going and crop, along with fruit and vegetable, operations will be ramping up activities in the next few weeks, it is vital…

The new superfood

"Watercress has more calcium than milk and more vitamin C than oranges"

The popularity of superfoods has revived the consumption of watercress, one of the oldest vegetables consumed by humans, whose nutritional properties have nothing to envy…

2 new discoveries, seed from multiple countries contaminated

At least 3 sources of ToBRFV in Dutch tomato cultivation

Multiple seed lots from China, Israel and Jordan have been tested positive for the Tomato brown rugose fruit virus (ToBRFV). The Dutch food and commodities authority (NVWA)…

EU to subsidize fruits and vegetables for school kids

The European Commission published the budget for the EU school scheme for the 2020/21 school year: €145 million is allocated to the distribution of fruit and vegetables and €105 million for the distribution of milk and dairy products to schoolchildren. National funds may also be used to top up the EU…

The Syrian refugee who developed virus-resistant super-seeds

Plant virologist Dr Safaa Kumari discovered seeds that could safeguard food security in the region – and risked her life to rescue them from Aleppo. Kumari’s seeds are resistant to the climate-fuelled viruses that have destroyed crops of pulses in the region. The call came as she sat in her hotel room.…

Greenhouse research to help in development of coronavirus vaccine

An ancient relative of tobacco, much maligned for the damage it has inflicted on public health, is key to a new vaccine to prevent the novel coronavirus. Medicago – a Canadian company with a biomanufacturing facility in Durham –  has used it to produce an experimental plant-based vaccine for COVID-19, the…

Spanish agricultural producers offer their fumigation machines to fight COVID-19

Agricultural producers from all over Spain are showing their solidarity with the rest of the population not only by maintaining their activity to guarantee food supplies, but also by offering their fumigation machines to the public administration to collaborate in the fight against the coronavirus by…

BumperCrop offers

Free Covid-19 staff checklist app for greenhouses

The team at BumperCrop have worked in conjunction with growers over the past two weeks on a new App to help address the New Zealand rules for operating during the COVID-19 lockdown period. Although not all rules are the same internationally, it could be very useful for growers in different countries as…

More financial relief for Canadians

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced on Wednesday that the House of Commons has passed an emergency bill, which is now before the Senate, for the government’s COVID-19…

Effects of the corona-measures on research carried out by WUR

On March 15th, in response to the spread of COVID-19, the Dutch authorities took additional severe measures with major impact. It is very likely that these measures will be even further strengthened in the coming time. Wageningen University & Research is following these measures strictly in order to…

COVID-19 threatens food supply chain as farms worry about workers falling ill

As Americans scattered to the privacy of their homes this week to avoid spreading the coronavirus, the opposite scene was playing out in the Mexican city of Monterrey. A thousand or more young men arrived in the city, as they do most weeks of the year, filling up the cheap hotels, standing in long lines…

COVID-19: What does it mean for your seasonal labor force?

The uncertainty caused by COVID-19 could not come at a worse time for Michigan specialty crop producers. Many are in the early phases of starting their production cycle and…

Alternative sales options for farmers

Although the NC Department of Health and Human Services has recently clarified that farmers markets are classified as groceries and may remain open, many markets in the state or other parts of the country will see decreased traffic or choose to remain closed until the threat of COVID-19 has passed. This…

Study abroad trip cut short; students still learn plenty

A group of students from NC State, one Delaware Valley University student and five NC State faculty and staff members left Thursday, March 5, for an experiential learning adventure in the Netherlands. The 10-day study abroad program allows students to learn about agricultural innovations, agritourism,…

Considerations for food processing facilities during novel coronavirus pandemic

Food processors are always required to operate under sanitary conditions and abide by sanitation regulations regardless of their licensed regulatory agency. It is important to continue these practices and increase the frequency of wiping down and disinfecting common surfaces in areas that are in high…

British Columbia declares state of emergency

COVID-19: Canadian government announces aid package

On March 18, 2020, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the government is introducing an economic aid package to help Canadians and businesses cope with the COVID-19…

Walter Ahn (Wasto-Pac GmbH) supports companies in the fight against corona

"Those who are willing to clean regularly, need have no fear of contamination"

For many companies, the corona virus is a historical catastrophe, but at the same time, one now has the chance to redefine existing business processes. This is the motto of Walter Ahn, the managing director of Wasto-Pac LLC. He supports the fruit and vegetable sector in the fight against corona with reliable…

COVID-19 Guidelines for Farmers

The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture has issued vital guidance in response to COVID-19 for farms and other agricultural businesses who serve farms. Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture Russell…

COVID-19 response & resources for California family farms

With the COVID-19 outbreak spreading and shelter-in-place orders coming down all across California, CAFF are compiling a number of tips, resources and guideline to help keep…

Bayer donates one million euros for hospitals in Lombardy

Bayer is supporting hospitals in Lombardy, Italy, with a donation of one million euros. The money is being added to an aid fund that the regional authorities in Lombardy have set up to help procure urgently needed equipment for intensive care units in hospitals with the greatest needs. “Our colleagues in…

Produce pick-up and deliveries during the COVID-19 outbreak: Keeping things safe

Produce buyers and shippers are essential in keeping produce department shelves stocked for consumers. Questions have come into the Rutgers On-Farm Food Safety Team regarding best practices for the shipping or receiving of produce. Communication is key, and prominent signage is the best way to convey…

North Korea: Military base makes way for vegetable greenhouse

In Jungphyong, North Korea, due to the northern oceanic climate, vegetable farming used to be practically impossible. People used to eat mostly pickled vegetables. When a military base moved away from the region, plans formed for a vegetable greenhouse. The project started in September 2018, and was…

European fresh produce sector guarantees continuous supply of safe & high quality fresh fruit & vegetables

Amid the COVID-19 outbreak across Europe the European fresh fruit and vegetable sector has increased efforts to ensure a continuous and diverse supply of safe, high quality…

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): latest updates from Canada and CFIA

Canada is closing its doors to the world by severely restricting international flights. “We will be denying entry to Canada to people who are not Canadian citizens or…

The Council published a handbook to operate in complete safety

Turnover dropped by 50 percent at the Ortomercato Milano

"The shutdown of both local and open-air markets has significantly reduced the demand for fruit and vegetables. To date, the chain of users at our Ortomercato is reduced to wholesalers in the nearby provinces, shops, discount stores and logistics platforms that distribute to several supermarkets." This was…

"Don’t fear eating your fruits and veggies"

Modern supermarkets with their many open displays of fruits and vegetables are truly a marvel and a reminder that the U.S. enjoys a safe and abundant food supply. However, in the face of the current nationwide COVID-19 outbreak, many questions about the safety of fresh fruits and vegetables have arisen.…

Cal Poly study focuses on women's health ... and strawberries

Kari Pilolla, an assistant professor in Cal Poly’s Food Science and Nutrition Department, is working in partnership with faculty and students at Humboldt State University to…

California LGMA shares food safety facts

US: EPA expands COVID-19 disinfectant list

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is releasing an expanded list of EPA-registered disinfectant products that have qualified for use against SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19. The list contains nearly 200 additional products—including 40 new products that went through the…

Japanese researchers working on improving greenhouse tomato cultivation

The National Agriculture and Food Research Organization or NARO is an institution in Japan for conducting research and development on agriculture and food. They have found that the crop yields in their greenhouses could be a lot higher and that about half of the greenhouse workers is 65 years old or…

Coronavirus: no evidence that food is a source or transmission route

EFSA is closely monitoring the situation regarding the outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) that is affecting a large number of countries across the globe. There is…

Researchers find ingredient in cruciferous vegetables prevents growth of cancer cells

In a study recently published in Scientific Reports, scientists at Okayama University in Japan describe how an ingredient of cruciferous vegetables prevents the growth of…

Tokyo Medical and Dental University

Unsalted tomato juice may lower risks for cardiovascular disease

We all know tomatoes are loaded with anti-aging antioxidant health benefits, anti-inflammatory properties, and immune system boosting vitamin C. However, a recent study…

Nature Fresh Farms offers employees health services through mobile clinic

On January 23rd the new weCHC on Wheels mobile health clinic arrived at Nature Fresh Farms greenhouse facilities delivering health services to its employees. Nature Fresh Farms became the first greenhouse to offer the weCHC mobile clinic health and personal support services to its employees. The 38-foot bus…


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