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Food Protection Message - October 2015

Friday, October 30, 2015

1080. Most people when they hear this number are going to think that you are talking about the resolution of your TV.  For those in New Zealand this number can provoke a very different reaction – anger and disbelief.  A year ago this month a terrorist(s) threatened Fonterra and Federated Farmers Inc. with contamination of their infant formula with 1080—the potent rodenticide—if they didn’t convince the New Zealand government to stop using the rodenticide by March of 2015.  New Zealand has used 1080 to control their non-indigenous population of possums and other invasive rodents for a number of years.  It is also used in the U.S. to protect sheep and goats from coyotes.

FPDI Director Featured in UMN Driven to Discover Campaign

Thursday, October 22, 2015

The Food Protection and Defense Institute’s Director, Dr. Amy Kircher, is featured in the University of Minnesota’s new Driven to Discover campaign. The 2015 campaign highlights a number of UMN researchers who are focused on changing the world. Other featured researchers include Dr. Angela Panoskaltsis-Mortari, Blood & Marrow Transplantation; Dr. Keith Mayes, African American & African Studies; and Dr. David Mulla, Soil, Water & Climate. Make sure to check out all of the videos and pages to see how the University of Minnesota is Driven to Discover.

Food for Thought - A Guide to Food Terminology

Monday, October 19, 2015

We are often asked at the Institute about the differences between food protection, food defense, and food safety. We can easily explain that food defense deals with intentional adulteration of the food system, while food safety focuses on unintentional contamination of the food supply. But what about the other food terms that are thrown around? The U.S. food system is one of our top critical infrastructures and we need to have proper terminology when referring to different aspects of food protection. We have put together a quick guide to food terminology to showcase how complex protecting our food supply can be. 

[Webinar] Profiting from Traceability - November 6, 2015

Monday, October 12, 2015

Traceability forms the foundational backbone to mitigating food safety and defense risks and vulnerabilities because it gives greater visibility across the entire supply chain – you cannot solve a problem you don’t know you have! However, pragmatic implementation of effective traceability relies on achieving commercial advantages in addition to serving the greater public good. This webinar will summarize the results of extensive research conducted by the Institute of Food Technologists’ (IFT) Global Food Traceability Center (GFTC) to provide insights into improving a company’s bottom line by enhancing existing traceability practices. It will also discuss best practices to recognize operational efficiencies and gain market access through enhanced traceability.

FPDI Receives $1M Grant for Ebola Research

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

SAINT PAUL, MN – The Food Protection and Defense Institute, a U.S. Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence based at the University of Minnesota has been awarded a $1 million grant by the Paul G. Allen Ebola Program to utilize “big data” and predictive analytics to identify emerging disease outbreaks and improve the resilience of health care supply chains in the wake of the Ebola crisis.

Food Protection Message - September 2015

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Two historic food defense events occurred this September. These events specifically deal with Economically Motivated Adulteration (EMA), an increasingly more common issue that we vigilantly monitor. On September 10th, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration released the final Preventive...

Research Spotlight: Fishy Business

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

This project conducted a comprehensive assessment of fish substitution in the Minnesota retail marketplace by (1) sampling 4 species at retail and performing DNA barcode analysis to evaluate the authenticity of labeling, (2) documenting the supply chain for each fish sample, and (3) performing a qualitative assessment of regulatory, retail, and consumer knowledge and opinions of fish fraud. The results can inform evidence-based policy making and public health efforts.

Webinar - Emerging Issues Research: Ebola and the Food System

Monday, September 21, 2015

The ongoing outbreak of Ebola in West Africa is the largest in history. A sustained outbreak of this magnitude has the potential to create new opportunities for pathways of human transmission previously thought to be unrealistic, including pathways involving the food system. This webinar will present findings from research performed by the Food Protection and Defense Institute and collaborators to rapidly evaluate the risk of Ebola transmission in the United States via three routes originating in West Africa: food commodities, imported wildlife, and illegal bushmeat.

Current Issue Report: Egg Shortages and the Potential for EMA

Monday, September 21, 2015

The 2014-2015 outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza began in December of 2014 and continues to threaten the United States’ supply of eggs and egg products. This outbreak has affected approximately 50 million birds, comprising 10% of the country’s laying hens. FPDI developed this Current Issues Report to inform stakeholders and consumers about one of the potential downstream effects to our food system, economically motivated adulteration of eggs.

Introducing the Food Protection and Defense Institute

Monday, September 14, 2015

Dear Friends and Collaborators – We have a new name!

The National Center for Food Protection and Defense would like to introduce you to the next iteration of our Homeland Security Center of Excellence: the Food Protection and Defense Institute. Over the past few years,...