USDA guidelines issued for farm preparedness
| 12.01.2006 | 05:11:15 | Views: 2738 | ID:
December 1 '06: Earlier this year, the US Department of Agriculture released a series of guidelines designed to help farmers and their employees work towards securing against the threat of a terrorist attack on the nation's food supply. According to the USDA "Improving awareness through enhanced outreach and communications is a key element of USDA's homeland security efforts."
The security and protective measures guidelines released by the USDA include best practices which can be employed through planning, security management and communication. Farmers are urged to develop a risk management plan and cooperate with local law enforcement while at the same time sharing that plan with farm employees.Because many chemicals used for fertilizing crops, or killing pests are stored on farms, the USDA asks that proper protective measures are put into place and regularly scheduled checks on the chemicals are made. To protect the perimeter as well as inside the farm, the government suggests that farmers should "Minimize the number of places where people can easily hide ... Trim trees and shrubs .... Secure water wells or other water supplies and identify alternative water sources as backups." Other and more specific guidelines are included for poultry, fish, dairy, cattle, and crop farming. Web sites pointing to various information on chemical security, farm security and counter-agroterrorism can be found in the guideline issued.
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