NSF International has joined foodservice distributor Pro*Act’s food safety and sustainability initiative for local produce, Greener Fields Together.

The company will offer training and verification.

To participate in Greener Fields Together, growers agree to annual food safety audits by NSF International or an approved third-party certifier already in place. They also complete an educational program.

Pro*Act’s network of distributors provides financial support for growers in the process, according to a news release.

“Demand for local produce continues to grow, as does demand for more scientific, verifiable food safety practices, including at the local farm level,” Michael Jantschke, director of food safety for Monterey, Calif.-based Pro*Act, said in the release.

“Having independent NSF International training and verification is a significant benefit both to the local farmers and to those who ultimately purchase and consume their products through the Greener Fields Together supply chain,” he said.

“Combining NSF’s food safety training and certification expertise with Pro*Act’s expertise in fresh produce is designed to enhance sustainability and safer produce, whether it’s grown by a national producer or by a regional or small local farmer,” David Richardson, managing director of NSF Agriculture, said in the release.