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Exterior planting shrubs, flower beds

FSEP HACCP PEST CONTROL

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#1 Scampi

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Posted 17 March 2015 - 03:24 PM

Is anyone aware of a requirement that would prevent us from planting hedges, shrubs or flower beds next to the building at the main office entrance? There has been some rampant discussion here as to yea or nay.

 


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#2 Setanta

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Posted 17 March 2015 - 03:36 PM

Depending on what it is you produce, and what standard you subscribe to, you may want to check into this. 

 

Many standards want a perimeter around the building kept clear as shrubs can be a place for rodents and insects to hide.  We have a gravel perimeter all the way around the building. It took until we expanded and went after SQF certifaction for ownership to get that shrubs, trees and landscaping niceties were pretty but not in our best interests. So check with your standards and also the CFIA to see what they recommend.


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#3 xylough

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Posted 17 March 2015 - 04:42 PM

Hi,

GMP audits I commonly performed e.g. AIB, Steritech, Silliker, etc. look that landscape does not touch the building with a clearance of at least 12" - 18" depending on the specific audit parameters.
Organic mulches are considered landscape. They want to see some kind of aggregate or paving to constitute a pest control perimeter that gives easy access to pest control technicians, promotes drainage away from the building and mitigates harborage. Well-kept, smart landscape that is away from the immediate building is not audited against as long as it is not some thick ground cover like ivy that harbors pests. Landscapes can be viewed as de facto weed control and audit parameters sometimes additionally have prescriptions that there be no e.g., "weed patches", "debris" within 25 ft. even if that demarcation falls on adjacent property or past a fenceline. The facility is expected to establish relationship with the neighbors to deal with landscape issues affecting the facility within the verbiage of the audit. Audit parameters sometimes speak to dust control and also to indications of rodent burrows on the grounds. Smart landscape can also serve to discourage interlopers and to obscure security risks like the main backflow prevention device if it is located outside. Very important to know the exacting parameters of your strictest audit before finalizing a landscape plan.
I have not yet entered the world of GFSI, but is is difficult to imagine that they would be less prescriptive than GMP audits.


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#4 Scampi

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Posted 17 March 2015 - 05:29 PM

I only have to hit the CFIA and FSEP requirement....and they are sooooo vague. Just hoping someone else had some first hand experience or input


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#5 MWidra

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Posted 17 March 2015 - 07:40 PM

Something that people don't think about, when planting shrubs around entrances to offices, is that it allows potential muggers to lurk right outside a door in the darker months.  If you have people who work late, and if your location is not perfectly secure, planting shrubs near the office entrances is not recommended.

 

If you have any worries about vandalism, it is not hard to set bushes on fire to have it spread to the building.  If your office is made of something that will burn, it is something else to consider.

 

Not a food safety issue, but a human safety one.

 

Martha


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#6 Scampi

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Posted 18 March 2015 - 05:43 PM

Thanks to all. The facility is on a family farm, so fortunately always someone around, so no worries from a human safety point of view, but I had not thought of that, and I should have, at a former workplace I was done at 1 am on the afternoon shift and the back parking lot was dark dark dark. We always went with a buddy.

The office entrance is about 100 feet away from the live receiving bay and the same from the shipping dock. I get the pest or vermin harbourage, but a few nicely kept shrubs would visually make a world of difference. Oh and there is a dog who lives here and does a damn fine job of keeping critters of the premises. ( I know I know but whatcha gonna do)


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#7 MWidra

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Posted 19 March 2015 - 08:38 PM

I had an interesting conversation with the technician from our pest management contractor.  When telling me that the activity was low today, he remarked that having fairly large gravel around our building perimeter reduces the mice and bugs that come in, they don't appear to like walking through it.  He said that when facilities that he visits have bushes, that if they keep them trimmed back and put stones under them for about 18 inches, that the pest activity goes down.  He said that if he builds a house, he's going to have stones around the foundation.

 

So, if you plant bushes, put gravel or stones under them.

 

Martha


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"...everything can be taken from a man but one thing:  the last of the human freedoms--to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way."  Viktor E. Frankl

 

"Life's like a movie, write your own ending."  The Muppets


#8 Simon

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Posted 19 March 2015 - 10:24 PM

Its a good idea to have gravel or paved walkway around your building perimeter, makes things much easier and reduces pest harbourage and potential ingress.


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#9 Scampi

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Posted 23 March 2015 - 05:09 PM

Thanks Martha! excellent advice from a great source. And easier to maintain too


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#10 handyandy

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Posted 22 January 2016 - 05:02 PM

Another mitigating factor is if there is any open gravel or paved area between the shrubs and the nearest grassy or bushy area.   Vermin will usually not travel across open areas for fear of being picked off by birds.  Easiest thing to do is ignore the regulations and go with what works for you as is your responsibility anyway.   Put a bait station under the shrubs and rodent traps inside your front door (which you should have in place anyway) and if you find that you are getting rodents in those traps remove the bushes.  I think you will find the traps empty as long as your door has a good lower seal.


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