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Zone 1 Sampling

As Zone 1 sampling becomes more common within the fresh produce industry, increased guidance and training is needed to ensure testing is done properly. This page includes webinars and trainings, guidance documents, and other resources to provide support to the industry.  Other resources on Listeria Monocytogenes can be found on the United Fresh website.



Following the 2017 release of the FDA’s “Draft Guidance for Industry: Control of Listeria monocytogenes in Ready-To-Eat Foods”, United Fresh published a revised industry guidance for the fresh produce industry. This new edition included more detail around sanitation and sanitary design as well as enhanced discussion of both Zone 1 and finished product testing. In 2019, United Fresh Food Safety Council formed a Zone 1 Sampling working group to develop the following resources to help describe the decision-making processes associated with Z1 sampling and provide recommended approaches in the event of a positive finding.

Trainings & Webinars

Building the case for Zone 1 Listeria sampling in produce operations: A review of regulatory policy and industry strategies Webinar (Recorded 10/1/19)

Unsure how food contact surface (i.e. Zone 1) testing for Listeria spp. can fit into your environmental monitoring plan without exposing your organization to regulatory risk or backlash? Join us for this 1-hr webinar to learn about the changes in regulatory thinking, conveyed via the FDA’s 2017 publication of “Draft Guidance for Industry: Control of Listeria monocytogenes in Ready-To-Eat Foods”, intended to incentivize the ‘seek and destroy’ approach to monitoring for Listeria on food contact surfaces. Still, many in the fresh produce industry (fresh-cut and packinghouses) remain understandably wary of Zone 1 testing. After covering current FDA policy related to environmental monitoring, we’ll provide detail on a new resource in development by a United Fresh workgroup: a set of guidelines and case studies that illustrate how an operation can prepare to implement Zone 1 sampling, and provide strategies for how to react in the event of a positive. After listening to this webinar, attendees should feel more confident in assessing their operation’s ability to move towards testing Zone 1 surfaces for Listeria spp. This webinar is sponsored by Ecolab.


Additional Resources

For any questions on these resources or to report broken links, contact Katie McGowan, Manager, Food Safety Programs, via email at or by phone at (202) 303-3402.