Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Rubbish in the Radishes..a Farmers Market without Product Liability Insurance..

Rubbish in the Radishes..

Should Farmers Market Vendors 

Carry Product Liability Insurance?

Why should you care?

Among other reasons to be skeptical to buy just anyone's food, here is a real one...THE AMATEUR FARMER

The Amateur Farmer  
But as well-intentioned as some small-scale farmers may be, some of them can make innocent mistakes, said Bradley W. Sullivan, a California attorney who specializes in defending farms, growers and shippers. And while he won’t refer to the case specifically, he said one of the worst cases he was involved in was a farmers market case.
The problem, he said, is that some of the farmers who sell at farmers markets are what could be called “amateur farmers.” And just as in sports or literature, for example, amateurs can make serious mistakes.
He saw that firsthand in a case that involved people who ate some “artisan salad greens” and came down with Hepatitis C. That happened, he said, because a farmer had unknowingly used compost made from human sewage sludge that hadn’t been thoroughly composted.
Sullivan said that the farmer, who bought the compost at a farm supply store, assumed it was the perfect thing to add to her raised beds where she grew salad greens. She hadn’t known that she should have asked to see a certificate of analysis to make sure it was properly composted.
Referring to the medical expenses that can result from a foodborne illness, Sullivan cited the steep costs associated with complications that can come with E. coli. If, for example, a person’s kidneys shut down, a condition called hemolytic uremic syndrome, medical expenses quickly mount.
Sullivan said it can cost as much as $5,000 to $6,000 a day to be in critical care, not to mention that a patient can be there for two weeks or more.
“People don’t realize the expenses involved in foodborne illnesses,” Sullivan said. “Some of them can come to a million dollars or more.”
And then there are the expenses that can come when a victim’s relatives sue because a relative has died. In last year’s listeria outbreak caused by cantaloupe from a Colorado farm, more than 30 people died from eating contaminated cantaloupe.
With that outbreak in mind, the Greeley, Colorado Farmers Market decided this year to require all of its vendors to carry at least $600,000 in general and product liability insurance. But like at other farmers markets, the worry there was that some of the smaller farmers would drop out of the market.
Now that the market has finished its first season with the new requirement in place, Karen Scopel, an official with the City of Greeley, which operates the market, said she knows of only one vendor who dropped out “purportedly due to the insurance.” But she also said that the vendor had indicated there were some health issues involved in the decision.
“While we had fewer vendors than in prior years, I cannot directly link that to the insurance requirement,” she told.....
For the full article: http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/11/should-farmers-market-vendors-carry-product-liability-insurance/#.VdNj5_lVhBd

Michael Fillers, CPIA, NFIP
Morris Insurance Agency, LLC
3032 Dauphin Square Connector
Mobile, AL 36607
O - 251-473-5119
F - 251-473-6301
C - 251-753-8011
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