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Abstract

A one-hour online food safety curriculum was developed to inform university farm workers on food safety hazards associated with production and harvesting of fresh produce. The farm curriculum consists of five sections (food safety importance, pre-harvest hazards, post-harvest hazards, personal hygiene, and regulations). Engagement activities and a user manual were developed to support the curriculum. Curriculum content was validated by an expert panel and a convenience panel of farm workers. The developed curriculum was piloted at two land grant universities (n=50). Multiple-choice quizzes were used to assess knowledge changes in each of the sections. Results indicated significant knowledge gains at both universities for all sections except the personal hygiene section. This pilot study provides evidence that an online format is effective in improving food safety knowledge. Because knowledge is a prerequisite for behavior, this curriculum can assist with mitigating food safety risk on university and other research farms.

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