Food Terrorists

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First, facilities must conduct a vulnerability assessment, which means finding the points in their processes that pose the greatest risk for intentional adulteration. Second, facilities must put in place mitigation, or preventive, strategies to address these vulnerabilities.

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Third, a system must be put in place for food defense monitoring, food defense corrective action, and food defense verification, which together ensure the system is working as intended to address the vulnerabilities. Fourth is recordkeeping. Finally, there are training requirements. Personnel, and their supervisors, working at the most vulnerable points in a facility are required to take food defense awareness training and to have the education, training, or experience to properly implement mitigation strategies.

In addition, preparing the food defense plan, conducting vulnerability assessments, identifying mitigation strategies, and engaging in reanalysis activities must be done or overseen by personnel with additional training or experience. One food is not inherently more at risk than another. Examples include an open access hatch on a large liquid food storage silo or a very large mixing vat that is open without a lid. We began focusing on food defense back in , working with other federal and state agencies that protect food.

Assessing vulnerabilities and putting in place preventive measures to address them are familiar steps to the food industry. A presidential directive was issued in to require FDA and the U.

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Department of Agriculture to conduct food defense vulnerability assessments with industry. In fact, the main requirements of the rule come from our collaborative efforts with industry. Up to now, food defense activities have been voluntary. And a single act could lead to wide-spread harm, causing illness, death and economic disruption of the food supply.

If you look at the largest outbreaks of foodborne illness, you can see what could potentially happen.


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We are aware that industry has many questions regarding implementation of the rule in their facilities and the costs associated with implementation. That is why in March we released a revised and expanded installment of draft guidance that is intended to provide additional information to help industry comply with the rule.

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The most recent draft guidance adds to and replaces a version we published in June We believe that the information contained in the guidance will help address many of the concerns raised by industry. The chapters of the current draft guidance are intended to help industry better understand:. This installment also includes the addition of food defense plan worksheets in Appendix 1 and a new appendix that includes detailed examples of vulnerability assessments using the Three Fundamental Elements and the Hybrid Approach.

Any method is acceptable as long as it has certain elements.

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In the first installment of the guidance, we identified four key activity types that FDA considers significant vulnerabilities. They are bulk liquid receiving and loading, liquid storage and handling, secondary ingredient handling, and mixing and similar activities. Instead of conducting a broader vulnerability assessment, a facility can identify actionable process steps for these specific activity types. In the current installment of the guidance, we describe two more options i.

Other options

And we do not specify what preventive steps must be used. Companies have significant flexibility in choosing which mitigation strategies are most appropriate for them.


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  5. For example, in the first installment of the guidance, we describe numerous mitigation strategies. There are instances where technology-based strategies may be the best way for a facility to reduce a significant vulnerability. In other instances, a strategy that is based on personnel may be a more practical and cost-efficient strategy that still reduces the significant vulnerability. Additionally, there is significant flexibility built into the requirements related to food defense monitoring, food defense corrective actions, food defense verification, and training. At the facility we were able to observe how the operation worked from the receiving dock to the production line to the packing equipment.

    This type of facility visit and feedback from stakeholders helps us to better understand the challenges and concerns they have. After hearing stakeholder concerns and touring the facility, Dr. Since this visit, we have continued to meet with a number of stakeholders. During these meetings, we believe we have made good progress in addressing important areas of concern and uncertainty.

    We emphasized that FDA does not expect facilities to undergo incredibly costly reengineering of plants or move huge pieces of equipment to comply with the rule. The rule is designed to primarily cover large companies whose products reach many people, exempting smaller companies. In an attack that left at least 14 people dead, the deputy leader also stated that it was 'good enough' that no Thais were killed and the Foreign Ministry was handling it, the report said.

    The report drew many comments highly critical of Gen Prawit's attitude. A recording of the press conference shows Gen Prawit said it was 'okay' that no Thais died, not 'good enough' as in the Kenyan report. Police in Kenya said on Thursday the confirmed death toll had climbed to 21, plus the five terrorists.

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    Gen Prawit blamed a particular Chinese tour operator for taking the people to sea despite weather warnings not to. Chinese social media bombarded him with criticism. Other Services. Prawit under fire over remarks on Nairobi terrorist attack Prawit under fire over remarks on Nairobi terrorist attack.

    Photo by Wassana Nanuam.