Food Protection and Defense Center Launched

Jul 07, 2004

By George Anderson

The Secretaries of the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced yesterday that the Homeland Security National Center for Post-harvest Food Protection and Defense would be located at the University of Minnesota.

The Center will focus its efforts on dealing with food contamination; preventing it, detecting it and responding to outbreaks where and when they occur. It will bring together educators, farmers, food manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers in fulfilling its mission.

University of Minnesota program will be funded for three years by a $15 million government grant. It is one of four planned. Texas A&M and the University of Southern California have already been chosen to focus on different food security issues.

Moderator’s Comment: What do you see as the biggest risk to the nation’s food supply and where should the government
be focusing its food security efforts?

The government knows for its program to work it will need buy-in from the business sector. Tom Ridge said, “Together with participation from local leaders
and responsible corporate citizens, these Homeland Security centers will bring the future to bear on the challenges facing our food supply today.”

George Anderson – Moderator

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