Produce Safety Advisory Council

​​The PSAC is currently accepting nominations for two vacancies: one for a representative of a nonprofit education institution, and one for a representative of an underserved community (Hmong community members strongly encouraged for nomination). Learn more, and downloa​d the nomination form​.

As part of the implementation of the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), the FDA established science-based standards for fruits and vegetables grown for human consumption, as outlined in the FDA regulation, “Standards for the Growing, Harvesting, Packing, and Holding of Produce for Human Consumption," commonly referred to as the Produce Safety Rule.

To fairly and effectively implement the rule, federal and state government, regulator entities, produce growers, industry and universities must work together. In this spirit, the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) created the Produce Safety Advisory Council under the authority of Wis. Stat. s. 15.04(1)(c). Advisory councils provide opportunities for people affected by agency decisions to participate in the decision-making process and improve the quality of agency decision making.

PSAC Members and Subcommittees


Name​ & Seat ​Affiliation & Bio ​Term St​art
Josh Rimmert (chair)
Seat: Processing, marketing or retailing business
Alsum Farms & Produce: Josh is the food safety coordinator at Alsum Farms & Produce, where he has worked for 15 years and led the food safety program for Alsum Companies for the last 12 years. He works closely with suppliers and packers, while keeping abreast of the latest food safety trends and practices. While attending Cambria-Friesland High School, Josh was an active member of the Randolph Cambria​-Friesland FFA and served as a chapter officer. He earned his American FFA Degree in 2004 and got his start in agriculture working at local dairy farms in central Wisconsin. Josh attended Western Technical College in La Crosse, earning an associate's degree in firefighting. He currently serves as the fire chief for the Friesland Volunteer Fire Department.
11/2020 to 11/2022; eligible for reappointment
Steve Louis (vice chair)
Seat: Produce farmer
Oakwood Fruit Farm: Steve grew up on an apple orchard and dairy farm in southwest Wisconsin. He attended UW-Madison and received a degree in horticulture and dairy science. Steve has run the packing operations and food safety program for Oakwood Fruit farm for 15 years. The farm packs nearly 100,000 bushel of apples each year. He works closely with other large apple packers in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Michigan while keeping up on the latest food safety trends and practices.
2/2021 to 2/2023; eligible for reappointment
Dan Cornelius
Seat: Tribal nation
Intertribal Agriculture Council
11/2020 to 11/2022; eligible for reappointment
Sara Ecker
Seat: Produce farmer
Ecker's Apples: Sara is the orchard manager of a 40-acre family farm in western Wisconsin. The farm is fairly vertically integrated – growing, harvesting, packing, wholesaling, processing, baking and making hard cider. The fa​rm underwent the On-Farm Readiness Review in 2019 and had its FSMA inspection in 2020. Sara is a member of the Wisconsin Apple Growers Association (WAGA) and currently serves on its board.
2/2021 to 2/2023; eligible for reappointment

Jay Ellingson
Seat: Processing, marketing or retailing business
Kwik Trip: Jay is responsible for the development and execution of Kwik Trip's food protection system, which includes food safety, food science, food regulations, and food security/fraud. He received his Ph.D. in molecular microbiology from Marquette University before completing his postdoctoral fellowship training with the USDA, Agriculture Research Service, National Animal Disease Center in Ames, Iowa, where he developed and patented a molecular diagnostic method for the detection of Johne’s disease in dairy cattle. Dr. Ellingson is a member of the CRBC Board and served on the YMCA Board from 2010-20.
11/2020 to 11/2022; eligible for reappointment
​Chris Fasching
Seat: Produce farmer
Wescott Agri Products: Chris is the food safety manager at Westcott Agri Products. He also is a grower, packer, shipper and importer. Chris has worked with Food Safety Modernization Act regulation implementation over several years. ​
5/2021 to 5/2023​; eligible for reappointment
​Wayne Geist
Seat: Produce farmer
Bushel and a Peck Market: Wayne and Lisa Geist own and operate Bushel and a Peck Market as well as Geist Electric. The farm is located in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin, and is fully covered under the Produce Safety Rule. The farm produces more than 36 varieties of apples, as well as currents, raspberries and blackberries while practicing ecology-based growing, promoting soil and tree health, nurturing pollinators, and protecting biodiversity. The market offers wholesale, pick-your-own and prepicked orchard selections as well as baked goods, fall produce, school tours, wagon rides and more. Wayne also is a member of Wisconsin Apple Growers Association, is an Army veteran and master electrician, and has a bachelor's degree in industrial management. 11/2020 to 11/2022; eligible for reappointment
​​Brandi Grayson
Seat: At-large

Urban Triage: Brandi is the founder, CEO, and president of Urban Triage and Grayson Consulting. Many know Brandi's work with the Young Gifted and Black Coalition (YGB), which she co-founded in 2014 in response to the murder of Mike Brown and, most recently, her leadership as CEO of Urban Triage following the murder of George Floyd. She embodies what she stands for: Supporting healthy Black families, transformative justice & education, integrity, breakthroughs, and Black liberation, bringing decades of experience working with Black families and children and program development and implementation while simultaneously experiencing the intersectionality of Black vulnerability. Leading her to found and ground her work in creating a better world and understanding that a better world starts with self: self-awareness, accountability, integrity, self-discovery, and the will to heal. Brandi can be reached at info@urbantriage.org.
8/2022 to 8/2024; eligible for reappointment

Hsing-Yi Hsieh​​​
Seat: Processing, marketing or retailing business
​​Festival Foods: Hsing-Yi serves as the director of food protection and regulatory affairs for Festival Foods. In this role, she is responsible for leading the execution of the company’s food safety, quality and regulatory compliance programs across 40 retail locations. Under her leadership, Festival Foods was the recipient of the 2019 Food Industry Association’s Food Safety Innovation Award. She holds a M.S. degree in food microbiology from Iowa State University and has more than15 years of food safety experience in both public and private sectors. She​ serves as a member of the Wisconsin Food Safety Advisory Committee, Wisconsin Produce Safety Advisory Council, FMI Food Protection Committee, and Conference for Food Protection.  
11/2020 to 11/2022; eligible for reappointment
​​Jenna LaChance
Seat: Consumer advocate

Organic Valley: Jenna is the produce member and production manager for Organic Valley, where she coordinates the seasonal prod​uction of the produce members, supports them in production practices and disease and insect management, and performs on-farm food safety education. She also is a Produce Safety Alliance ​trainer. She has a bachelor's degree in horticulture and a master's degree in plant pathology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Jenna can be reached at jenna.lachance@organicvalley.coop.
8/2022 to 8/2024; eligible for reappointment

Jeff ​Mears
Seat: At-large
Wisconsin Tribal Conservation Advisory Council: Jeff is executive director of WTCAC, a nonprofit established in 2001 that provides a forum for the 11 federally recognized tribal nations in Wisconsin on natural resource and agricultural issues. Jeff is a member of the Oneida Nation, with a bachelor's degree in biological sciences and chemistry from Northern Illinois University, and master's of public administration from UW-Oshkosh. Jeff has more than 25 years of natural resources management experience with the Oneida Nation and now WTCAC.
​2/2021 to 2/2023; eligible for reappointment
Susan Quam
Seat: Processing, marketing or retailing business

Wisconsin Restaurant Association
11/2020 to 11/2022; eligible for reappointment​
​Lavern Zeiset
Seat: Produce farmer
​Lavern Zeiset Farm; Plain Communities 11/2020 to 11/2022; eligible for reappointment

PSAC membership list     

  • Compliance Subcommittee: Working to improve buyers' understanding of covered growers requirements and the benefits that are in place if/when they obtain produce from inspected or audited farms.
  • Statute and Rule Subcommittee: Working to better understand the true scope of the regulation by reviewing it piece-by-piece and sharing feedback.
  • Strategic Planning Subcommittee: Working to understand opportunities for exempt farms to gain equal market access.
  • Outreach and Education Subcommittee: Working to brainstorm additional tools and key partners to aid in the completion/clarification of the farm inventory.​

Agendas and Minutes


​Meeting​Date and Time​Materials
​PSAC
​May 18, 20​22
​​Minutes
​PSAC
​March 16, 2022
​​Minutes
​PSAC
​February 16, 2022
​Minutes
​PSAC
​November 17, 2021
Minutes
​PSAC
​August 18, 2021Agenda, Minutes
​PSAC
​May 19, 2021
​Minutes