New York State requires businesses to have a specific business safety plan in place during the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes all farms, both food and non-food producing. In addition, a well-written and executed business safety plan will help reduce business liability risk during and after the pandemic. A Cornell Task Force recently developed materials to directly support farms in the plan writing process.
Cornell Cooperative Extension and Cornell Agricultural Workforce Development are offering a “NY Forward Business Safety Plan Support” webinar series with specialized webinars for Dairy/Livestock/Crop Farms, Fruit/Vegetable Farms, Retail Farms, Equine Farms and Greenhouse/Landscaping/Ornamental Farms. The recordings from these webinars is found in the right sidebar of this page.
Considerations and Examples for Required Safety Plans for Agricultural Businesses
Every farm business is unique. NY Forward requires each agricultural business to have a written safety plan in place appropriate to their business. This safety plan details how your business will provide employees and customers protection as New York re-opens for business by region across the state during the COVID-19 pandemic. Both essential agricultural businesses that have remained open and those non-food related agricultural businesses who will re-open must have a safety plan.
The safety plan is about mitigating risk of people associated with your business contracting the COVID-19 virus. Risk of virus transmission increases as the number of people involved or in close proximity to one another grows. Each business is unique in its environment and number of people involved, as family, employees, business associates or customers who visit the premises grows. The complexity of your safety plan is likely to reflect the number and frequency of interactions among people at your farm.
Resources on this page will help you develop a plan to ensure the safety of people involved in your business. Resources organized by type of agricultural enterprise will help you customize a plan that meets the needs of your specific business. Each building block provides examples and considerations to allow you to either use New York State’s template or develop your own plan using pieces you may already have in place in your HACCP, FARM Plan or from Best Management Practices for different parts of your entity.
As you begin to put your plan together it is important to keep in mind the purpose of the plan: to prevent the spread of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) among people. The plan must have three elements:
Throughout these “Considerations and Examples” you will find information about what the safety plan is required to cover. There are links to guidance documents from New York State, U.S. Centers for Disease Control, Cornell and other experts. Ideas for language you might use to describe how your plan will address requirements outlined by New York are included too. Color-coding all through the documents will help you identify requirements of the safety plan, guidance documents, and example language.
You can choose the format that best suits your needs to develop your safety plan. Templates are provided in Microsoft Word, a fillable PDF form, or you can simply print the template and hand-write text into the boxes provided to address the specific situation for your business. A task force of Cornell Cooperative Extension professionals from across the state, who collectively are familiar with the many different types of enterprises and complexity of agricultural businesses in New York, developed these tools to help make it easier for you to meet the state mandate for a safety plan to protect the people associated with your business.
These are blank templates that you can download and use to write your farm business’s safety plan.
A team of Cornell Cooperative Extension professionals developed documents with important information and concepts for you to consider as you write your plan and examples of what might appear in a farm safety plan. Use these documents to help you think through each part of your farm safety plan.
This section includes the essential guidance documents prepared by official sources such as New York and U.S. government authorities and Cornell experts.
Last updated August 25, 2020