The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has released paper-based versions of its agricultural water assessment builder tool in both English and Spanish. The agricultural water assessment builder was released in March 2022 as an online tool to help farms understand the proposed requirements for an agricultural water assessment in the Agricultural Water Proposed Rule. The newly released, paper-based versions of the tool are intended to make the content accessible to a broad array of users.
If finalized, the proposed rule would require growers to conduct systems-based agricultural water assessments to determine and guide appropriate measures to minimize potential risks associated with pre-harvest agricultural water. The assessment would include an evaluation of the water system; agricultural water use practices; crop characteristics; environmental conditions; potential impacts on source water by activities conducted on adjacent and nearby land; and other relevant factors, such as the results of optional testing. Covered farms would be required to conduct pre-harvest agricultural water assessments annually, as well as in the event of significant changes that affect the likelihood of a hazard being introduced to produce or food contact surfaces.