State Agency Directs $2 Million Toward Crop-Related Disease Prevention

Dec 1, 2016

Credit U.S. Department of Agriculture

A grant awarded to the Nevada Department of Agriculture will help farmers prevent produce-related disease outbreaks.

Reno Public Radio's Marcus Lavergne has more.

The $2 million award, dispersed over the next five years, will help Nevada farmers comply with guidelines set by the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2011. In addition, the department will offer various workshops and training to farmers around the state.

Ashley Jeppson is a state agriculturalist. She says if food makes consumers sick in one region, there could be national repercussions.

"Any time there's an outbreak in another state it does have impacts on those commodities in our state. People get a bad impression of those products. So if we can go in partnering with our states to try to prevent these outbreaks it provides for a safer food system nationwide."

Commonly known food-borne illnesses include E. coli, Salmonella and Norovirus which can result in hospitalization, and if severe enough, death.

Jeppson says the training will emphasize maintaining clean irrigation water, animal intrusion control. It will also focus on personal cleanliness when handling produce to prevent these types of outbreaks.