You are here

Food Protection Message - June 2014

Monday, June 30, 2014
ncfpd 10-year reception
henry ford quote
There is no “I” in team! Nor is there one in Food Defense or the acronym, NCFPD. As we have reflected on these first 10 years, I recognized the significant contribution of a whole host of professionals from a multitude of places. The research portfolio is multidisciplinary. We have former students that are now incredible colleagues in government, industry, and academia. And there is this amazing network of dedicated individuals that support this effort. Whew…my Rolodex requirements have tripled since arriving.
This month, we celebrated the establishment of the National Center for Food Protection and Defense. What a gift it was to have our DHS leadership, academic colleagues, and industry partners honor the teamwork accomplished in 10 years. We were able to spend the day talking to students about research opportunities and jobs in homeland security. We had researchers share their innovations. And we toasted this multidisciplinary team.

We finished these 10 years strong by providing FDA with a comprehensive response, informed by you, to their proposed rule on intentional adulteration. Additionally we delivered our first Food Defense certificate course, at IFT last week, with an incredible cohort of domestic and international team members. It was truly amazing how much we can learn from each other as we build a more comprehensive international food defense program.
With 10 years on the books, we transition this month to a focus on the future. To kick this effort off, I would ask you to indulge me with 5 minutes of your time today. This effort will require very little, just your email system and brainstorming skills. Send me an email at with your response to one or all of the following questions:

  • What threats still exist from intentional adulteration?
  • What capability to accomplish food defense is missing from your toolbox?
  • What issue have you not been able to get your arms around?
  • Is there a “widget” that just doesn’t work or exist for food defense that you want built?
  • What course would you sign up for if money or time were not a barrier?
  • What research do you need done?
  • The “coolest” technology for food defense would be the ability to…. [fill in the blank] 
I challenge you to fill my inbox. I want hundreds of responses. Remember food defense is a “team sport” and I need your input!


P.S. For those questioning, yes I still have a Rolodex (actually 3). Contingency planning my friends.

John Hoffman

Amy Kircher, DrPH is the Director of the National Center for Food Protection and Defense, A Homeland Security Center of Excellence.

Follow Dr. Kircher on Twitter @FoodDefender for the latest news and information on what is happening in the food protection and defense world!