Institutions like hospitals, universities, colleges and other wholesale accounts want to bring fresh products to their staff, patients and students. Farms with food safety certifications are chosen as suppliers to reduce the buyers’ liability. Farms can be competitive in this wholesale market by seeking and maintaining food safety certification.
Growers and producers in Massachusetts have at least two certifications available to help them market their produce, forestry, lobster and aquaculture products: Commonwealth Quality Program (CQP) From the MA Department of Agricultural Resources (MDAR) and Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) Certification from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). [more]