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New Mexico State University

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NMSU to offer food process control school for manufacturers

Managers and supervisors of food processing and packaging systems are invited to attend a four-day training program offered by New Mexico State University's Food Technology Program in association with the Food Processors Institute. The Better Process Control School will run May 15-18 on the Las Cruces campus.

"This school is intended for and directed to the level of operating supervisors specified in the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act," said Nancy Flores, NMSU Extension food technology specialist.

The law requires that all operators of thermal processing and packaging systems, such as commercial processors of low-acid foods and acidified foods, be under the supervision of a person who has attended a school approved by the FDA commissioner.

"A commercial processor is defined as any person engaged in commercial, custom and so-called sportsman processing or institutional, such as church, school, penal or other organizations, processing low-acid foods for human consumption," Flores said. "Low-acid foods category is any food, other than alcoholic beverages, with a finished equilibrium pH value of greater than 4.6 and a water activity greater than 0.85, and includes any normally low-acid fruits, vegetables, vegetable products, meat or pet foods."

The course includes instruction on acidified foods, such as fresh packed pickles, acidified peppers, pimentos, pickled eggs, and salsa, to meet the specific Good Manufacturing Practices requirements.

NMSU's Better Process Control School is approved by the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration and is cooperative venture of NMSU's Cooperative Extension Service, FDA and industry personnel.

The early registration fee is $575 per person prior to May 1. Registration after May 1 is $625. Registration for NMSU students is $100. Fee includes textbook, instruction and testing.

Check-in will start at 8 a.m. Tuesday, May 15, in Room 303, Gerald Thomas Hall on the NMSU campus, 940 College Drive, Las Cruces. The school will end at 5:30 p.m. Friday, May18. Lodging and meals are not included in the registration fee.

For more information call Gloria Hernandez at 575-646-2198 or visit http://aces.nmsu.edu/ces/foodtech/better-process-control-s.html#anchor_13033 which will link you to a brochure and registration form.