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  • Author or Editor: Barbara A. Rasco x
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Apples (Malus domestica) are considered covered, or “nonexcluded,” produce under the Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Safety Rule. The rule states that fruit that has unintentionally come in contact with the ground may not be used for human consumption unless there have been sufficient processing steps to reduce the risk of human pathogens in the final food product. Cider apples destined for hard cider production in many regions have traditionally been harvested at full ripeness when the fruit naturally drops or is easily shaken off the tree. This work reviews the status of cider apples under the Produce Safety Rule, presents the human pathogens of concern with usage of ground-harvested fruit, and describes recommendations, including processing steps, for cider apple growers and cider producers so they can ensure that their product is safe and that they are complying with the rule.

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