Postharvest handling is an important aspect of food safety considerations, but also affects produce quality. Addressing issues of packing, handling, sanitation, temperature, and other postharvest practices can help maintain the quality of fruits and vegetables through the processes of marketing and consuming.
Below are some useful information and resources related to postharvest handling:
- Small-Scale Postharvest Practices: A Manual for Horticultural Crops
A 267-page manual of postharvest practices for a variety of crops, published by the UC Davis Postharvest Technology Research and Information Center. The manual can be purchased in print in many languages, or downloaded as a free PDF in: (warning: large file sizes)
- UC Good Agricultural Practices
Compilation of information on GAPs and postharvest handling, including an extensive GAP self-audit.
- Keeping Postharvest Handling Principles in Perspective
Front-page article in 2007 Vol. 1 issue of Small Farm News
- Postharvest Handling of Organic Crops (PDF)
Article in peer-reviewed University of California Organic Vegetable Production series.
- Small-Scale Cold Rooms For Perishable Commodities (PDF)
Information and design ideas for builidng a small-scale cold room, in an 11-page publication from University of California agricultural engineers.
- Postharvest Produce Facts
Organized by specific crop, postharvest handling directions for fruits, vegetables and ornamentals. From UC Davis Postharvest Technology Research and Information Center.
- Small-Scale Postharvest Library
Additional publications from the UC Davis Postharvest Technology Research and Information Center that are specifically pertinent to small-scale production.