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UEDA Annual Summit 2014 - Awards of Excellence - Talent Development - Food Safety Training


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Iowa State University Meat Science Extension offers a wide range of training programs for the meat processing industry including our flagship Sausage & Processed Meats Short Course as well as courses focused on Dry & Semi-Dry Sausage Processing, Cured Meat, and Basic Sausage. We have also partnered with Smithfield Foods, an international company to offer 8 training programs exclusively for their employees.
Food processing is the largest industry in Iowa comprising 25% of the market with 5.8 billion in annual sales. Food borne illness is a serious threat in a food processing facility, especially one handling foods that are ready-to-eat when they leave the facility. West Liberty Foods, a producer-owned value-added cooperative, designed and built a “state of the art” meat slicing facility in Mount Pleasant, Iowa and supplies sliced meat to more than 6,000 quick serve restaurants nationwide. However, management understood that the most sophisticated food safety system is only as good as the training employees receive. Without thorough employee training, widespread food borne illness could occur and the company could experience significant financial losses.
Iowa State University Extension specialists and trainers from West Liberty Foods team teach an eight-hour pre-employment food safety course that includes principals of food safety including safe food handling techniques and how food borne illness can be prevented. Upon completion, participants that pass a closed-book exam are eligible to work in the West Liberty Foods plant. Once employed additional food safety training is required.

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UEDA Annual Summit 2014 - Awards of Excellence - Talent Development - Food Safety Training

  1. 1. Food Safety Training 2014 UEDA Summit Awards of Excellence Talent Development
  2. 2. Food Safety Training • Food and beverage processing is important to Iowa’s economy 25% of the manufacturing sector 5.8 billion in annual sales 52,000 jobs • Foodborne illness is a serious threat to consumers and food processing companies Meat Science Extension
  3. 3. West Liberty Foods Meat Science Extension Food Safety Training • In 2003 West Liberty Foods formed a partnership with Iowa State University • Food safety training is jointly taught by Iowa State University Extension and Outreach and West Liberty Foods staff • 425 classes held - 4,630 trained at Mount Pleasant, Iowa • Iowa State University reviews and updates materials, provides education for trainers • 2007 West Liberty Foods opened a plant in Tremonton, Utah
  4. 4. West Liberty Foods Meat Science Extension Food Safety Training
  5. 5. West Liberty Foods Meat Science Extension Food Safety Summit October, 2008 44 Participants representing 31 Companies
  6. 6. West Liberty Foods Meat Science Extension Food Safety Training Unique Characteristics • Need to complete before working in plant • Awarded a CEU from Iowa State University • Program shared with competitors Important Attributes • Consistent, long program life • Addresses different learning styles • One-on-one interaction • Highly motivational to participants
  7. 7. Meat Science Extension Meat Science Extension Programs • Food safety, regulatory compliance, meat science and business sustainability • Programs for Iowa Meat Processors • Programs regional, national and international in scope
  8. 8. Meat Science Extension Sausage and Processed Meat Short Course Series Meat Science Extension
  9. 9. Meat Science Extension Short Course and Seminar Programs Meat Science Extension
  10. 10. Documented Impact in Iowa Meat Science Extension Programs Meat Science Extension 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 In the last 4 years clients have reported • 174 million in increased sales • Nearly 5 million in cost savings • 650 jobs added or retained ≤ 10 11-50 51-250 251-500 501-2000 2000+ # of Client companies by size (last 4 years)