Innovative food defense initiatives
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Innovative Food Defense Initiatives. North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services. Joseph Reardon Food Administrator Food and Drug Protection Division.

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Innovative Food Defense Initiatives

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Innovative Food Defense Initiatives

North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services

Joseph Reardon

Food Administrator

Food and Drug Protection Division

The former Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson said, “For the life of me, I cannot understand why the terrorists have not attacked our food supply because it is so easy to do.”Food Safety= Food Defense

Importance of Food Defense

Food Safety and Defense Task Force

  • Developed in 2001 including key state agencies, industry, and academia Supported by Governor Executive Order

    • Co-chaired by NCDA&CS and Department of Health and Human Services

    • Coordinated approach to identify vulnerabilities and safeguard food supply

  • Developed Emergency Programs Division

Multi-Hazard Threat Database

  • Rapid Response

    • Fast access to information

    • Strong visual and analytical capabilities

  • Risk Assessment

    • Estimate rates of spread or progression

    • Establish specific mitigation/protection plans

Benefits of Utilizing GIS Multi-Hazard Database (MHDB)

  • Improved Management Capabilities

    • Real-time management of incident

    • Determine and locate required resources

    • Improve planning/response capabilities

    • Facilitate develop recovery plans

    • Available for federal response needs

Emergency Notification Capabilities of GIS-MHDB

Incident Command Teams

  • Food and Drug Incident Management Teams Goal: Establish basic response skills

    • Incident action plan

    • Situational Report

    • Task Tracker

    • Public Information (JIC)

“Highwater” Exercise

  • ICS Teams must resolve injects:

    • Employee availability

    • Farmers requesting on-site visits for embargoes

    • Wrecks involving transporting of food

    • Complaint calls from citizens

    • Retailers selling adulterated food

  • Exercise identified gaps in preparedness policy and needed resources

Future Initiative

  • Food Defense

    • Food defense must be conducted at the state level

      • State should pilot specific plans

    • Develop relationships with other state government agencies, federal agencies, and industry for data sharing

    • Identify food and agriculture vulnerabilities

      • Link data to GIS and MHTD


  • ODP funding requires shift from population based to agriculture based

  • Federal funding needed on multi-year basis for state programs

    • Over 80% of food security work including inspections, investigation of complaints, and enforcement actions performed at state and local level

    • Direct financial support required for state departments and laboratories responsible for food safety/defense

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