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Food Supply Chain Security

When Tommy Thompson resigned as secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, his parting words included a stark warning that the nation's food supply was an inviting and vulnerable terrorist target. Recognizing the need to beef up food-chain security, the United States Department of Agriculture, in partnership with the Agricultural and Food Transporters Conference and the Conference of the American Trucking Associations, has developed a guide for secure transport of food. Secure practices are provided for drivers and for commercial agricultural and food transporters. The latter, for example, are urged to protect their water supply system, such as by locking wellheads, pump houses, and water storage tanks. They should also assess their facilities for potential sabotage of bulk ingredients, such as by ensuring that access to corn syrup, flour, and other foodstuffs is controlled. The jointly developed food safety guidelines were fashioned as a result of a survey of 24,000 commercial agricultural and food transporters to identify vulnerabilities in food transportation. The sponsoring organizations hope the guidelines help industry.foodsecurity_usda0205.pdf