United Fresh Produce Association is now accepting applications for Class Three of the Produce Safety Immersion Program, sponsored by Calavo/Renaissance Food Group at the gold level and Ecolab as a silver sponsor. The year-long program empowers the next generation of produce safety professionals to build their technical capacity, critical thinking skills and leadership attributes.
“Through the first two years of this unique program, we have successfully supported the career development of dozens of produce safety professionals throughout the industry and it’s been a joy to watch them grow,” said Dr. Jennifer McEntire, senior vice-president, food safety & technology, United Fresh Produce Association. “Class Three Fellows will engage in a variety of in-person and virtual networking and education opportunities to build their professional network, interpret and apply technical information and ultimately better serve the industry and consumers.”
The program offers a balance of face-to-face meetings, training, tailored webinars, regular networking and professional development sessions with industry leaders and an ongoing mentorship program. Four highly skilled produce safety professionals will serve as mentors to the program fellows and support the professional growth and development of the cohort.
“As a mentor for the Program’s Class Two, I have seen the immense impact United Fresh’s engaging program has on up-and-coming produce safety professionals,” said Natalie Dyenson, vice-president, food safety & quality, Dole Food Company. “As produce safety continues to evolve, professional development opportunities like this will be crucial to prepare for the scientific, technological, regulatory and market changes of the future.”
Class Three will be immersed in key produce safety topics including outbreak investigations, traceability, environmental monitoring, statistics of sampling, food law, and more. The full schedule of programming is available on the United Fresh website.
Early-to-mid career professionals with less than five years of experience in produce safety are encouraged to apply for Class Three, which will launch in January 2022 as part of the new association. Applications will be evaluated by past mentors and program alumni, based on their backgrounds, roles in the industry, career aspirations, and recommendations.
United Fresh is hosting an informational webinar about the Produce Safety Immersion Program on October 19 at 2 pm ET/11 am PT. Dr. McEntire will discuss the impact of the Program, along with the tentative 2022 schedule and application instructions. Alumni and current program members will share their experiences and attendees will have time to ask questions. Registration is available here.
To apply for Class Three of the Produce Safety Immersion Program, visit www.unitedfresh.org. The application deadline is October 31. For more information about the program, contact Katie McGowan, United Fresh’s food safety manager at 202-303-3402 or firstname.lastname@example.org.