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Addressing the Threat of Food and Agricultural Terrorism

Addressing the Threat of Food and Agricultural Terrorism

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Addressing the Threat of Food and Agricultural Terrorism

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  1. Addressing the Threat of Food and Agricultural Terrorism Bruce L. Akey, MS, DVM Asst. State Vet/Asst. Director Division of Animal Industry New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets

  2. USDA and FDA • USDA regulates meat, poultry and egg products. • FDA regulates all other food products, drugs, cosmetics, biological, medical devices, radiation-emitting electronic products and veterinary products.

  3. U. S. Food Industry • In the U.S., characterized by centralized production and wide distribution • Even accidental contamination can result in widespread outbreaks • Produce imports from all over the world, possible contamination difficult to monitor (cyclosporiasis, HAV, bean sprouts, etc.)

  4. Terrorists Can Exploit Multiple Pathways

  5. U.S. Food Safety System • System was originally designed to detect and contain accidental contamination events • Changes are being made to address possible deliberate contamination events • Multiple points of access in the farm to fork continuum must be monitored

  6. U. S. Food Industry FARM Poultry Eggs Crops Livestock Livestock Market Feedlot Slaughterhouse Processor Retail Distributor/Wholesaler Consumer

  7. State Dept. Agriculture Dept. Health Local Health Federal U. S. Dept. Agriculture Food and Drug Administration Dept. Homeland Security U.S. Food Safety System

  8. STATE • Dept. Agriculture • State Veterinarian • Meat/Poultry Inspection • Food Inspection • Dept. Health/Local Health • Food Inspection • Water

  9. FEDERAL • USDA: Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) • Meat, Poultry, Eggs and their products • 7600 personnel in slaughter and processing plants • Food and Drug Administration (FDA) • All other food products, drugs, cosmetics, biologicals, medical devices, radiation-emitting electronic products and veterinary drugs/biologicals

  10. FEDERAL • Department of Homeland Security (DHS) • Customs • Immigration • Agricultural Quarantine & Inspection • Approximately 500 M people/year enter U.S. • Over 140 M trucks, ships, planes, buses and cars • A single ship can carry as many as 5,000 containers • We have >70 ports of entry for food and cargo

  11. FEDERAL USDA • Animal/Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) • Veterinary Services • Animal Import Quarantine • 38,000 animals a day are imported into the US

  12. Attacks on the Food Supply • 1952 Insurgents in Kenya poison cattle • 1970 Graduate student infects colleagues with Ascaris suum • 1972 Rising Sun Fascist group plan to contaminate water with typhoid • 1978 Palestinian Commando contaminate citrus with mercury in Israel • 1985 Tea exports in Sri Lanka threatened by Tamil Rebels

  13. Attacks on Food Supply • 1984 Salmonella typhimurium in salad bars, Oregon (Rajneesh cult) • 1989 Breeders claim releasing fruit flies in California • 1989 Chilean grapes contaminated with cyanide • 1996 Shigella dysenteriae type 2 on doughnuts at a lab • 2002 Rome, -CN attempt on U.S. embassy

  14. Contamination Events • 1985 – Salmonella typhimurium – improperly pasteurized milk – 200,000+ cases • 1993 - Jack-in-the-Box hamburgers, E. coli • 1994 – Salmonella enteriditis – ice cream – 200,000+ cases • 1996 – E. coli, bean sprouts, 7,000 cases • 2002 – MDR Salmonella Newport (multi-state) • 2002 – Multi-state Listeria outbreak

  15. FSIS 5-point strategy • Improved management of inspectors • Application of science in crafting regulations • Better coordination with other agencies • An aggressive education campaign for food handlers • Protection of food supply against terrorist attack

  16. Food Threat Preparedness Network (PrepNet) • Food Safety and Inspection Service • Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service • Food and Drug Administration • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention • Department of Defense • Environmental Protection Agency • State and local agricultural, health departments

  17. Food Safety Initiatives USDA:FSIS • Security Guidelines for Food Processors • Inside and outside premises • Mail, shipping & receiving • Slaughter, processing, storage • Water, ice • Personnel

  18. Food Safety Initiatives USDA:FSIS • Safety and Security Guidelines for the Transportation and Distribution of Meat, Poultry and Egg Products • Detailed security planning for storage and distribution of products • As always, personnel considerations are of critical importance

  19. Regulatory Activities Related to Food Production • Routine Surveillance Sampling • Spot-Check Surveillance • Complaint Investigation • Syndromic Surveillance/Trend Analysis • HACCP

  20. 2002 – Avian Influenza – USA – 4 million birds destroyed - over $100 million

  21. 2002-03 Exotic Newcastle Disease – USA – over 5 million birds, more than $160 million

  22. 2003 – BSE – Canada – 1 infected, over 2,000 destroyed - $11 million/day losses

  23. Contamination Events • 2001 – Foot & Mouth Disease – UK – over 2,000 farms, 8 million animals destroyed, $15 billion

  24. International Agricultural Service • The "Foreign Service" of the U.S.D.A. • Foreign Agricultural Service • USDA Veterinary/International Services  • Based in embassies, but cover a region • Animal Health and Food Safety • For our imports • For our exports • For improving food safety in other countries

  25. Strategies for Countering Threats Prevention • Constant information input, imagination • Vulnerability analysis throughout industry • Food industry has primary prevention role • Gov’t. (federal & local) advises & regulates • Simple measures added to combat sabotage

  26. Strategies for Countering Threats Surveillance & Response • Monitor animal and human health • Identify the threat/risk/exposure • Analytic lab availability • Contain and control the risk • Minimize the damage • Lessons learned for avoidance

  27. Public Health Promotion of Food Safety • Educate the public • Educate food retailers, be available to answer questions, be visible to them • Inspect food services as law requires • Know and work with regional USDA, FDA, state Ag & Markets professionals • Attend informational sessions

  28. Biosecurity On the Farm • Know the health status of incoming animals • Isolate new arrivals from the herd/flock • Control access to the farm • Cleaning/Disinfection of clothing, vehicles, equipment • Maintain records/identification • Seek veterinary care for sick animals • Contact State Veterinarian about sick animals

  29. Promoting Food Safety in Distribution & Retail • Report theft of chemicals, pesticides, etc • Monitor condiment & salad bar displays • Carefully screen and educate new staff • Know your suppliers and their sources • Test your water and ice regularly • Maintain internal & external security • Awareness training for employees

  30. Promoting Food Safety in the Home • Ensure food packaging is intact • Be alert to abnormal odor, taste, appearance • Wash raw fruits & vegetables • Wash poultry? • Wash hands, cooking and prep areas, and utensils thoroughly with soap and water

  31. Additional Food SafetySuggestions • Report theft of chemicals, pesticides, etc • Restrict or contain access to chemicals & cultures in the home, farm and workplace • Inform us of possible food-borne illness • Observe tamper-proof packaging

  32. How and when to contact… • USDA: www.usda.gov • FSIS: www.fsis.usda.gov • FDA: www.fda.gov • NYS Ag & Markets: www.agmkt.state.ny.us • NYS DOH: www.nysdoh.state.ny.us

  33. University at Albany SPHCenter for Public Health Preparedness www.ualbanycphp.org 518-486-7921

  34. November 6, 9:00a-10:00a Coordinating Community Response: Public Health, Hospitals, Law Enforcement and Emergency Management Services Dr. Joel Ackelsberg, NYC Department of Health and Mental Health