Arizona and California LGMA Programs Introduce Environmental Risk Assessment Tool to Help Leafy Greens Farmers

Today the Arizona and California LGMA food safety programs announced the availability of a new food safety tool to aid growers and shippers as they assess risk in the crop production environment.  This assessment looks at various risks both on the ranch that the farmer controls and on land adjacent to the crop production area.

“The LGMA has always required that its members conduct an environmental risk assessment, but this new tool incorporates the LGMA requirements and standardizes the way that each member addresses specific hazards,” said Teressa Lopez, Arizona LGMA Program Administrator.  “After completing the assessment, the user will get a risk score and see what impact specific mitigation measures can have on safety of the crop.”

The Environmental Risk Assessment Tool is currently formatted as an Excel spreadsheet.  The tool requires the user to look at the following adjacent land uses and hazards (also known as Table 0 in the LGMA metrics):

  • Animal Operations
  • Compost/Soil Amendment Operations
  • Non-leafy green crops
  • Water Source and Systems
  • Urban Settings
  • Other Environmental Considerations

After hazards and risk considerations are entered by the user, the tool will assign a risk result rating. The user will then enter mitigations that were taken at the farm level to address the potential hazard prior to planting. Based on the mitigations entered, the tool will adjust the risk rating based on pre-assigned mitigation values.  These mitigation values were assigned in the tool depending on the impact those mitigations have on lowering the risks to the field.  

Greg Komar, Technical Director of the California LGMA states, “Arizona and California LGMA have been collaborating on this tool with the goal of providing our food safety professionals with the necessary resources to be effective and efficient in monitoring field conditions and adjacent land hazards.  Use of this tool is not required by LGMA members, but we hope that many will take advantage of it.”

About LGMA:  LGMA members produce over 90% of the Nation’s lettuce and leafy greens – adding up to over 50 billion servings a year.    To provide consumers with safe leafy greens, the LGMA verifies food safety practices, enforces through government audits and requires a commitment to continuous improvement.  Learn more at