UFFVA joins national security partnership

May 1, 2002
Tom Stenzel, United Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Association president and chief executive officer, has signed an agreement to establish a partnership on behalf

Tom Stenzel, United Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Association president and chief executive officer, has signed an agreement to establish a partnership on behalf of United's members with the Food Industry Information Sharing and Analysis Center (ISAC), formed by the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) and United States government authorities. The Food Industry ISAC has a threefold mission:

  • Provide information and analysis that will enable the food industry to report, identify, and reduce vulnerabilities to malicious attack, and to recover from any attacks as quickly as possible.

  • Help the National Infrastructure Protection Center (NIPC) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Weapons of Mass Destruction Operations Unit identify credible threats and craft specific warning messages for the industry.

  • Have experts to help the NIPC and FBI assess specific threats.

The Food Industry ISAC was established by FMI to serve as a voluntary industry contact point for gathering, analyzing, and disseminating information between companies and the multi-agency NIPC based at FBI headquarters in Washington DC. The ISAC is expected to include association partners from all food industry sectors.

Through this partnership, United members will have a confidential means to report suspicious activities to the FBI for credible threat analysis, and to receive qualified alerts and warnings about specific threats to the food supply that have been substantiated by the government.

ISACs are managed by the NIPC, which serves as the assessment, warning, and law enforcement entity for threats or attacks against the nation's critical infrastructures. All other executive branch departments are directed to share information about threats, warnings, and actual attacks with NIPC. Seven industry ISACs have been established: food, oil and gas, electric power, banking and finance, information technology, telecommunications, and water.

In the case of the food industry, all other government departments and agencies including the Food and Drug Administration, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Department of Agriculture will cooperate with the NIPC in assessing risks and threats to the food supply.

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