MICHIGAN AGRICULTURE ENVIRONMENTAL ASSURANCE PROGRAM

MAEAP was developed by a coalition of agriculture farmers, commodity groups, state and federal agencies, and conservation and environmental groups.  While the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) is the verifying agency, MAEAP is also a partnership effort.

MAEAP teaches farmers how to identify and prevent environmental risks and work to comply with State and Federal Environmental Regulations.  Farmers who successfully complete the three phases of a MAEAP system are rewarded by becoming verified in that system.

MAEAP Forest, Wetlands, and Habitat*A*Syst

Landowners, are you interested in adopting better practices to protect your forest, wetland, or other habitat?  The Forest, Wetlands, and Habitat*A*Syst (FWH*A*Syst) is part of the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP) and provides a way for you, the landowner, to examine and improve your current management practices in order to minimize negative impacts to the land and the water.  By getting your property MAEAP verified through the FWH*A*Syst, you are playing a positive role in the protection and sustainable management of our natural resources.

There are several steps involved to get your forest, wetland, or other habitat MAEAP verified through the FWH*A*Syst:

  1. Have a management plan written by a professional in the field of natural resources. This professional can be a forester, ecologist, or other natural resources professional.
  2. Meet with a Conservation District Forester and/or a MAEAP technician to complete the FWH*A*Syst risk assessment. The questions from the risk assessment are used to determine which of your practices need to be improved to minimize environmental impacts. A plan of action must be developed for any practices that need to be improved.
  3. Fulfill the MAEAP Phase 1 education requirement by attending a Phase 1 educational session or by viewing online Phase 1 media.
  4. Once you have fulfilled the education requirement and have developed a plan of action to improve practices that do not meet the MAEAP standards, you may contact an official MAEAP verifier to you have your forest, wetland, or other habitat verified through the MAEAP FWH*A*Syst.
  5. Upon successful verification, you will receive a sign that you can proudly post on your property!

Four Systems:

Michigan is the second most agriculturally diverse state.  As a result, a one-size-fits-all approach to environmental protection simply does not work on Michigan farms.  MAEAP effectively overcomes this challenge by offering areas of concentration known as systems.  Each system focuses on a different aspect of farming operation.  Farmers can become verified in all systems applicable to their farm.  The systems are:        

Farmstead

Cropping

Livestock

Forest, Wetlands, and Habitat

Three Phases

Verification in each MAEAP system requires meeting all three phases for that system.

Phase 1 – Education involves farmer attendance at a qualified MAEAP educational session.  Held across the state, these sessions introduce farmers to MAEAP and update them on new and emerging regulations and opportunities affecting agriculture.  For a list of upcoming education sessions or to view online education options go to www.maeap.org.

Phase 2 – On-farm risk assessment focuses on evaluating environmental risks and devising farm-specific and economically viable solutions.  Each MAEAP system uses a unique risk assessment tool developed to address the environmental impacts of that system.

Phase 3 – Third -party verification is completed by MDARD upon farmers request.  MDARD verifies the farm has met the requirements of Phase 1 and 2, the State’s Generally Accepted Agricultural Management Practices (GAAMPs) are being followed, and the farm has implemented practices specific to system requirements.  To maintain verified status, farms are reverified every five years.

Michigan Produce Safety

The Michigan’s Produce Safety Risk Assessment is a voluntary and confidential produce safety program used as a resource for farms growing produce. Completing the Michigan Produce Safety Risk Assessment is a way for farms to be confident that their practices are consistent with the current U.S. Food and Drug Administration Produce Safety Rule. Food Safety is an important concern that needs to be addressed on all produce farms. Whether a farm is a small family farm or a big corporate farm, using good production, harvest and post-harvest management practices will help prevent contaminated produce and ensure the wellness of customers. That in return will also help ensure the success of the farm.

According to the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule, at least one responsible person on a farm must have completed food safety training that has been recognized as an adequate training by the Food and Drug Administration. There is multiple grower produce training sessions planned across Michigan for Winter and Spring 2019.

Pre-registration is required for the training sessions. For more information and to register go to:

https://events.anr.msu.edu/2019WinterPSA/

https://events.anr.msu.edu/2019SpringPSA/


For more information on the Michigan Produce Safety Risk Assessment Program go to:

www.michigan.gov/producesafety


For more information please contact your local Produce Safety Technician, Jordan DeVries, at (231) 225-3072 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..