Best Practices in Processing of Grains, Soybeans, and Hay

  • • Hold the managers and owners of food processing, production, preparation, and serving companies criminally responsible for purposeful acts of negligence resulting in the injury or death of people, as was done on September 21, 2015, when a federal judge for the first time gave the chief executive officer and other top level administrators of a US peanut butter company a substantial prison sentence for outbreaks of foodborne disease due to massive and known acts of negligence based on fraud, conspiracy, and the introduction of adulterated food into interstate commerce.
  • • Reduce the potential for increased mycotoxins through: rotation of crops; reduction of prior crop debris; appropriate weed and insect control; application of the correct amounts of fertilizer; appropriate use of fungicides, and very importantly, adequate drying. (See endnote 29.)
  • • Remove damaged grains and chaff from the grain stream to remove concentrated contaminants which would increase mycotoxins.
  • • Harvest grain as soon as possible when ripened and cool and dry as soon as possible.
  • • Reduce erosion through the use of: conservation tillage, contour farming and strip cropping, cover crops, grassed waterways, terraces, windbreaks, grass barriers, and snow fences. (See endnote 30.)
  • • Avoid insect resistance to the Bt gene (This is a natural toxin produced by the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis. This product is frequently used by organic farmers.). Plant strips of non-genetically modified seeds between areas of modified seeds.
  • • Conduct regular soil tests on each area to determine levels of nutrients present and amount of nutrients which needs to be used.
  • • Determine through testing manure the amount and types of nutrients present and how much to use in different areas.
  • • Use conservation tillage and other erosion control practices to minimize the loss of phosphorus from the land and into the water.
  • • Determine the proper timing of the application of fertilizer to maximize its use.
  • • Use acceptable integrated pest management practices to obtain maximum results while applying minimal quantities of chemicals.
  • • Use the pesticide to match the problem and minimize contamination of the environment.
  • • Evaluate weather conditions before applying pesticides and avoid times of substantial rainfall or windy conditions to prevent contamination of bodies of water and areas not meant to be sprayed.
  • • Carefully determine the amount of chemicals needed and adjust the calibration of the sprayer to perform at maximum capacity.
  • • Do not spray chemicals in areas where there are sinkholes, depressions, wells, surface water, schools, businesses, etc.
  • • Minimize water usage in all types of irrigation systems while providing good drainage.
  • • Store fertilizers away from pesticides (both should be stored in dry, secured well-managed areas and containers) and prevent accidental spills while quickly containing those that have actually occurred.
  • • Train personnel in all aspects of the preparation, use, storage, and disposal of fertilizers and pesticides.
  • • Secure petroleum products in aboveground and underground storage systems while preventing overfilling, pipe leaks, and tank corrosion. (See endnote 30.)
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