U.S. Tobacco GAP
The U.S. Tobacco GAP Program was developed over several months with industry collaboration consisting of tobacco manufacturers dealers, state departments of agriculture, universities, grower associations, and other farm organizations such as Farm Bureau from across the tobacco growing regions. It is an industry-wide program that aims at ensuring sustainable, economically viable production of useable tobacco and can be defined as: agricultural practices which produce a quality crop while protecting, sustaining or enhancing the environment with regard to soil, water, air, animal and plant life as well as protecting and ensuring the rights of farm laborers.
There are GAP training events occurring annually across eleven different states. A list of training events is listed on the GAP Connections Calendar. If there is not an event near you please contact GAP Connections or your local Extension office for other possible options.
GAP Connections seeks to demonstrate the industry's dedication to all three management areas found on every farm: crop, environmental, and labor management. For that reason GAP training will consist of topics covering all three of those management areas.
The labor management section of the meeting has been covered by the U.S. DOL Wage and Hour Division since 2014 in many of our locations. If the U.S. DOL Wage and Hour Division is unavailable the topic is presented by GAPC staff or state extension personnel. Below is the presentation shared by U.S. DOL at 2017 GAP Meetings.
Please check with your contracting company to learn more about your specific U.S. Tobacco GAP training requirements.
U.S. Tobacco GAP assessments offer growers a chance to demonstrate their commitment to producing a quality crop while using best management practices to protect the environment and provide a safe workplace. Assessments include document review, a farm tour, and worker interviews.
Participation benefits you as a grower in many ways:
Third party assessments provide assurance to customers that Good Agricultural Practices are being followed in production of the tobacco they are buying. This enhances the value of US tobacco in the eyes of customers and helps the whole US tobacco industry.
Assessments benefit the vast majority of growers who want to produce a high quality crop in a sustainable manner by "leveling the playing field". They help ensure that no one gains short term advantage by using poor, unsustainable practices.
Assessments can reduce your risk for violation of labor or environmental regulations by identifying concerns early and providing guidance in correcting them
U.S. Tobacco GAP Guidelines and Records
Please navigate through the U.S. Tobacco GAP Manual below by clicking on the section your are interested in or download the full copy choose below:
- GAP Manual (including Guidelines and Records)
- GAP Records Only
- Handouts at Meetings:
- Fact Sheet #77 A: Prohibiting Retaliation Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)
- Fact Sheet #77 C: Prohibiting Retaliation Under the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (MSPA)
- Worker Rights and Responsibility Handout (English)
- Worker Rights and Responsibility Handout (Spanish)
If you would like the 2017 Calendar pages they are available below in PDF and Excel.
The concept of Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) aims at ensuring sustainable, economically viable production of usable tobacco and can be defined as: agricultural practices which produce a quality crop while protecting, sustaining or enhancing the environment with regard to soil, water, air, animal and plant life as well as protecting and ensuring the rights of farm laborers.
The Crop Management guideline topics:
Variety Integrity and Selection
Integrated Pest Management
Crop and Operation Management
Curing and Barn Management
Non-tobacco Related Materials (NTRM)
On-farm Tobacco Storage
The Environmental Management guidelines cover the following topics:
Soil and Water Management
The Labor Management guidelines cover the following topics:
Laws and Regulations
Farm Labor Related Resources
Farm Safety and Worker Training
The following are the list of record templates provided: