Food Protection

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Glossary Abbreviations

Food Defense Acronyms, Abbreviations and Definitions
(The acronyms, abbreviations and definitions provided on are for educational purposes and originate from the U.S. FDA-CFSAN-Office of Food Safety, Defense & Outreach - March 28, 2006. The information shared in the glossary may include views or recommendations which do not necessarily reflect the full views of the NCFPD or indicate its commitment to a particular course of action. )
Association of American Feed Control Officials: AAFCO's goal is to provide a mechanism for developing and implementing uniform and equitable laws, regulations, standards and enforcement policies for regulating the manufacture, distribution and sale of animal feeds; resulting in safe, effective, and useful feeds.
Automated Broker Interface: A component of the U.S. Customs Service's Automated Commercial System (ACS) that permits qualified participants to electronically file required import data with Customs. ABI is a voluntary program available to brokers, importers, carriers, port authorities, and independent service centers. This interface serves as one electronic portal for submission of BT Act Prior Notice Information.
Automated Commercial System: The system used by the U.S. Customs Service to track, control, and process all commercial goods imported into the United States. ACS facilitates merchandise processing, significantly cuts costs, and reduces paperwork requirements for both Customs and the trade community. This system serves as one electronic portal for submission of BT Act Prior Notice Information
Association of Food and Drug Officials: Organization of state food and drug officials which serves the state function for implementing state and or federal food safety regulations and policy and serves as FDA's primary counterpart in state government.
American Feed Industry Association: A national organization that represents the business, legislative and regulatory interests of the animal feed and pet food industries and their suppliers.
Animal Feed Safety System: A draft comprehensive, risk-based Animal Feed Safety System (AFSS), developed by FDA's CVM, which describes how animal feeds (individual ingredients and mixed feeds) should be manufactured and distributed to minimize risks to animals consuming the feed and people consuming food products from animals.
A biological or chemical poison which may be used for intentional or terrorist acts (see SFB, VBPV, HSBT, HLBT, WSHSC, LSHSC, LSCLC).
Animal Health Institute: AHI represents manufacturers of animal health care products (i.e., pharmaceutical, vaccine and feed additives) used to produce a safe supply of meat, milk, poultry and eggs, and the veterinary medicines that help pets live longer, healthier lives..
Association of Public Health Laboratories: A non-profit organization that works to safeguard the public's health by strengthening public health laboratories in the United States and across the world. APHL advances laboratory systems and practices, and promotes policies that support healthy communities.
Association of State and Territorial Health Officials: A national nonprofit organization that formulates and influences sound public health policy and represents the state and territorial public health agencies of the United States, the U.S. Territories, and the District of Columbia.
Critical features and building blocks of the Food and Agriculture Sector. See CI/KR definition.
American Veterinary Medical Association: A not-for-profit association representing veterinarians and is the authorized voice for the profession in presenting its views to government, academia, agriculture, pet owners, the media, and other concerned publics.
BT Act
Bioterrorism Act: As a result of the events of Sept. 11, 2001, Congress responded by passing the Public Health Security and Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002 (the Bioterrorism Act), which President Bush signed into law June 12, 2002. FDA is responsible for carrying out certain provisions of the Bioterrorism Act, particularly Title III, Subtitle A (Protection of Food Supply) and Subtitle B (Protection of Drug Supply).
Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy: A progressive neurological disorder of cattle that results from infection by an unconventional transmissible agent termed a prion. BSE possibly originated as a result of the feeding of meat-and-bone meal to cattle.
Bio-safety level: There are four bio-safety levels (designated in ascending order, by degree of protection provided to personnel, the environment, and the community) developed for microbiological and biomedical laboratories for safe working conditions. Guidelines exist as a means of protecting workers from the risks associated with various manipulations of many agents transmissible by different routes and consist of a combination of engineering controls, management policies, work practices and procedures, and, occasionally, medical interventions. BSL 3 and 4 are highly specialized containment facilities for certain rare and dangerous agents.
CFSAN Adverse Event Reporting System: A comprehensive system to receive consumer complaints, industry information and other reports used by FDA's CFSAN for tracking and analyzing adverse event reports involving foods, cosmetics and dietary supplements. This system will be used as a monitoring tool to identify potential public health issues that may be associated with the use of a particular product already in the marketplace.
An acronym denoting: Criticality, Accessibility, Recuperability, Vulnerability, Effect, Recognizability: A risk assessment tool to conduct vulnerability assessments by determining the "critical nodes" that are the vulnerable targets for terrorist attacks and lead to the identification of steps or countermeasures which may reduce the risk to the production of that product. The intent of the assessments is to comprehensively assess all FDA regulated products and thus improve the safety and security of the food supply. Upon completion, the results are shared with industry and individual companies to apply as appropriate within their production system. A joint effort is underway entitled SPPA that employs CARVER.
Customs and Border Patrol: The unified border agency within DHS to manage, control and protect the Nation's borders, at and between the official ports of entry.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: The nation's premiere health promotion, prevention and preparedness agency (located within DHHS) and a global leader in public health. CDC's mission is to promote health and quality of life by preventing and controlling disease, injury, and disability.
Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition: One of six-product oriented centers in FDA that is responsible for ensuring that the nation's food supply is safe, sanitary, wholesome, and honestly labeled, and that cosmetic products are safe and properly labeled.
Central Intelligence Agency: The federal agency for collecting, correlating, evaluating and disseminating intelligence for the national security.
Critical Infrastructure / Key Resource: Systems and assets (see asset definition), whether physical or virtual, so vital to the U.S. that the incapacity or destruction of such assets, systems, network or functions would have a debilitating impact on security, national economic security, national public health or safety, or any combination of those matters. KR, as defined by the Homeland Security Act of 2002, is publicly or privately controlled resources essential to the minimal operations of the economy and government. The NIPP provides the unifying structure for integrating CI/KR protection efforts within and across all sectors over the long term.
Critical Infrastructure Protection: A national program (AKA National CIP Program), defined by the Homeland Security Act of 2002 and subsequent Presidential strategies, to protect the nation's critical infrastructure, a responsibility that is shared among the private sector, local and state governments, and the federal government. There are 19 CIP Sectors of which FDA participates in the Food and Agriculture Sector.
Creuzfeldt Jakob Disease: Classic CJD is a human prion disease. It is a neurodegenerative disorder with characteristic clinical and diagnostic features. This disease is rapidly progressive and always fatal. Important Note: Classic CJD is not related to "mad cow" disease. Classic CJD is distinct from "variant CJD" (vCJD). vCJD is another prion disease that is related to BSE and is believed to be caused by eating contaminated beef products from BSE-affected cattle.
Federal Commission for the Protection against Sanitary Risks: (AKA: Comisión Federal para la Protección contra Riesgos Sanitarios): COFEPRIS is a part of the Ministry of Health of the United Mexican State's with a mission to protect the population against sanitary risks through sanitary regulation, control and promotion. Consequence The result of a terrorist attack or other incident that reflects the level, duration and nature of the loss resulting from the incident. For purposes of NIPP, there are four main categories: health, economic, psychological and governance.
Continuity of Operations Plan: An organization needs to be able to ensure the safety of its employees and the survivability of its critical business functions. Thus, COOP is a plan that lays out how an organization will maintain operations when a threat or event is detected. The COOP details the response plan to an event that may threaten its ability to conduct business--from the initial detection of the event all the way through the ultimate recovery and resumption of "normal" processes.
Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists: CSTE represents the epidemiology and surveillance components of public health and works together with CDC to improve the public's health by supporting the efforts of epidemiologists working at the state and local level by promoting the effective use of epidemiologic data to guide public health practice and improve health.
Center for Veterinary Medicine: One of six-product oriented centers in FDA that regulates the manufacture and distribution of food additives and drugs that will be given to animals.
Department of Health and Human Services: The United States government's principal agency for protecting the health of all Americans and providing essential human services, especially for those who are least able to help themselves. The food safety and defense agencies within DHHS are FDA and CDC. DHS Department of Homeland Security: The new Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has three primary missions: to prevent terrorist attacks within the United States, to reduce America's vulnerability to terrorism, and to minimize the damage from potential attacks and natural disasters.
Department of Defense: The department's mission is to provide the military forces needed to deter war and to protect the security of our country.
Department of Justice: The department's mission, in part, is to enforce the law and defend the interests of the United States according to the law.
Electronic Laboratory Exchange Network: An integrated, web-based information network that allows health officials at multiple government agencies engaged in food safety activities to compare, share and coordinate laboratory analysis findings. eLEXNET is the data capture and communication system for the FERN. eLEXNET provides the necessary infrastructure for an early warning system that identifies potentially hazardous foods and enables health officials to assess risks and analyze trends.
Emergency Operations Center: EOC serves as the FDA's focal point for all emergency response activities 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. EOC may receive notification of an emergency through a variety of means, including from FDA Headquarters, CDC, USDA, FDA District Offices, FDA Centers, other federal and state agencies, consumers, and other sources outside the FDA, such as through monitoring of the media.
Environmental Protection Agency: EPA's mission is to protect human health and the environment. EPA also leads the nation's environmental science, research, education and assessment efforts.
Federal Bureau of Investigation: The investigative arm of the US Department of Justice. FBI will produce and use intelligence to protect and defend the nation from threats and to bring to justice those who violate the law.
Food and Drug Administration: FDA is responsible for protecting the public health by assuring the safety, efficacy, and security of human and veterinary drugs, biological products, medical devices, our nation's food supply, cosmetics, and products that emit radiation. The FDA is also responsible for advancing the public health by helping to speed innovations that make medicines and foods more effective, safer, and more affordable; and helping the public get the accurate, science-based information they need to use medicines and foods to improve their health.
Federal Emergency Management Agency: FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in 2003. FEMA's mission is to lead the effort to prepare the nation for all hazards and effectively manage federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident.
Food Emergency Response Network: A network of state and federal laboratories that analyze food samples in the event of a biological, chemical, or radiological terrorist attack in this country. The federal partners in the FERN are the FDA, USDA, CDC and EPA. The FERN is linked and/or partners with CDC's Laboratory Response Network.
Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act: This law was passed by Congress in 1938 and is the primary law, among others, that FDA regulates and enforces.
Food Facility Registration Module: A system to allow domestic and foreign facilities that manufacture, process, pack, or hold food for human or animal consumption in the United States to register with the FDA as required by the BT Act.
Federal Grain Inspection Service: The FGIS, within USDA, helps move U.S. grain harvest into the marketplace by providing farmers, handlers, processors, exporters, and international buyers with sampling, inspection, process verification, weighing and stowage examination services that accurately and consistently describe the quality and quantity of the commodities being bought and sold.
Food and Nutrition Service: FNS, within USDA, manages programs that provide children and low-income people access to food, a healthful diet, and nutrition education (e.g., Food Stamp Program, School Meals, etc.).
For Official Use Only: The term used to identify unclassified information of a sensitive nature, not otherwise categorized by statute or regulation, the unauthorized disclosure of which could adversely impact a person's privacy or welfare, the conduct of Federal programs, or other programs or operations essential to the national interest. Information impacting the National Security of the United States and classified Confidential, Secret, or Top Secret is not to be considered FOUO. FOUO is not to be considered classified information.
Food Defense
Food defense is the collective term used by the FDA, USDA, DHS, etc. to encompass activities associated with protecting the nation's food supply from deliberate or intentional acts of contamination or tampering. This term encompasses other similar verbiage (i.e., bioterrorism (BT), counter-terrorism (CT), etc.)
Food Processors Association: A trade association for the food and beverage industry in the United States and worldwide and provides technical and regulatory assistance to member companies and represent the food industry on scientific and public policy issues involving food safety, food security, nutrition, consumer affairs and international trade.
Food Safety and Inspection Service: The public health agency in the USDA responsible for ensuring that the nation's commercial supply of meat, poultry, and egg products is safe, wholesome, and correctly labeled and packaged.
Food and Agriculture Sector - Government Coordinating Council: The government counterpart to the SCC that is established to enable interagency coordination of agriculture and food security strategies and activities, policy, and communication across government and between the government and each sector to collaborate and develop consensus approaches to the CI/KR protection. Membership is comprised of various levels of government (Federal, State, Territorial, local and tribal).
A hazard is any biological, chemical, or physical property that may cause a food to be unsafe for human consumption.
Heat labile bacterial toxins: One of four types of biological agents (e.g. Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin).
Heat stable bacterial toxins: One of four types of biological agents (e.g., Staphylococcus aureus toxin). HSIN Homeland Security Information Network: A communication system (includes all 50 states, five territories, Washington, D.C., and 50 other major urban areas) to deliver real-time interactive connectivity among state and local partners and with the DHS Homeland Security Operations Center (HSOC) through the Joint Regional Information Exchange System (JRIES).
Homeland Security Information Network: A communication system (includes all 50 states, five territories, Washington, D.C., and 50 other major urban areas) to deliver real-time interactive connectivity among state and local partners and with the DHS Homeland Security Operations Center (HSOC) through the Joint Regional Information Exchange System (JRIES).
Homeland Security Operations Center: Serves as the nation's nerve center for information sharing and domestic incident management to increase the vertical coordination between federal, state, territorial, tribal, local, and private sector partners. HSPD Homeland Security Presidential Directive: In general, presidential directives are a form of executive order issued by the President of the United States with the advice and consent of the National Security Council. HSPD are specific directives regarding homeland security.
Homeland Security Presidential Directive: In general, presidential directives are a form of executive order issued by the President of the United States with the advice and consent of the National Security Council. HSPD are specific directives regarding homeland security.
Institute of Food Technologists: A nonprofit scientific society to advance the science and technology of food, and related professions in industry, academia and government.
Interagency Food Working Group: A working group consisting of representatives from many federal agencies (e.g., USDA, EPA, DHHS, DoD, etc.) to discuss issues of a particular topic. This group was formed under the White House Homeland Security Council.
Information Sharing and Analysis Center: Prior to formation of DHS, the FBI used this organizational concept for two-way communication of security alerts. With the formation of DHS, use of CIPs, and development of HSIN platform, the ISAC and other entities such as the Coordination Councils may serve the same role. ISAC is a Public/Private Sector partnership between the Food Industry and the National Infrastructure Protection Center (NIPC) of the FBI. ISAC's purpose is the rapid and confidential dissemination of information gathered by the government's intelligence community to the food industry regarding any actual or potential threats arising from deliberately malicious or terrorist activity. Beyond that, the ISAC also serves as a vehicle for communicating confidential information from the industry on any actual, threatened or suspected deliberate malicious attacks so that information can be analyzed by the Department of Homeland Security.
Joint Regional Information Exchange System: A secure network and a suite of applications operating at the sensitive but unclassified (SBU) level and provides a platform for communications through the classified SECRET level to state offices.
Laboratory Response Network: The CDC network of state public health laboratories developed to provide surge capacity for samples resulting from a public health emergency caused by a select agent.FERN biological laboratory network members performing select agent analysis will also have to become members of the LRN
Lipid soluble, heat labile chemicals: One of three types of chemical agents (e.g., ricin).
Lipid soluble, heat stable chemicals: One of three types of chemical agents (e.g., digoxin).
National Association of County and City Health Officials: A National organization representing local governmental public health agencies (including city, county, metro, district, and tribal agencies). These agencies work every day on the front lines to protect us and to promote the health of our communities. NACCHO supports public health in local communities by calling for strong national policy, developing useful resources and programs, seeking health equity, and supporting effective local public health practice and systems.
National Association of Local Boards of Health: NALBOH is a grassroots foundation engaged in establishing a significant voice for local boards of health on matters of national public health policy, resource allocation, and education.
National Association of State Departments of Agriculture: A nonprofit organization that represents the state departments of agriculture in the development, implementation, and communication of sound public policy and programs which support and promote the American agricultural industry, while protecting consumers and the environment.
National Environmental Health Association: NEHA works to advance, in terms of education and motivation, the environmental health and protection professional for the purpose of providing a healthful environment for all.
National Grain and Feed Association: A non-profit trade association that provides services for grain, feed and grain-related commercial businesses. NGFA represents member interests before government and other entities and is focused on the growth and economic performance of U.S. agriculture.
National Incident Management System: NIMS establishes standardized incident management processes, protocols, and procedures that all responders -- Federal, state, tribal, and local -- will use to coordinate and conduct response actions when a homeland security incident occurs -- whether terrorism or natural disaster.
National Infrastructure Protection Plan: This plan provides guidance for further developing and implementing the National CIP Program by providing the unifying structure for the integration of CI/KR protection efforts. The overarching goal is to enhance protection of the Nations CI/KR in order to prevent, deter, neutralize, or mitigate the effects of deliberate efforts by terrorists to destroy, incapacitate, or exploit them; and enable national preparedness, timely response, and rapid recovery in the event of an attack, natural disaster, or other emergency.
In the context of NIPP, to normalize is the process of transforming risk data into comparable units.
Operational and Administrative System for Import Support: An automated FDA system for processing and making admissibility determinations for shipments of foreign-origin FDA-regulated products seeking to enter domestic commerce.
Office of Criminal Investigation: OCI has the primary responsibility for all criminal investigations conducted by the FDA, including suspected tampering incidents and suspected counterfeit products. Similarly, OCI has primary responsibility and is the primary point of contact for all law enforcement and intelligence issues pertaining to threats or perceived threats against FDA regulated products. OCI participates in numerous law enforcement and intelligence task forces both nationally and internationally to include a full time representative to Interpol.
Office of Crisis Management: OCM serves as the FDA's focal point for coordinating emergency and crisis response activities involving FDA regulated products or in situations when FDA regulated products need to be utilized or deployed. It coordinates intra-agency and inter-agency activities related to crisis management, emergency preparedness and response, and security operations. OFSDO Office of Food Safety, Defense and Outreach: An office within CFSAN that is responsible for leading and coordinating food safety and food defense efforts as well as all outreach conducted by the Center.
Office of Food Safety, Defense and Outreach: An office within CFSAN that is responsible for leading and coordinating food safety and food defense efforts as well as all outreach conducted by the Center.
Office of Public Health Emergency Preparedness: OPHEP serves as the principal advisory staff to the secretary of DHHS on matters related to bioterrorism and other public health emergencies. OPHEP also coordinates interagency activities between DHHS, other Federal departments, agencies, offices and State and local officials responsible for emergency preparedness and the protection of the civilian population from acts of bioterrorism and other public health emergencies.
Office of Regulatory Affairs: The ORA is the lead office for all Field activities of the FDA.
Operational Risk Management: A simplified risk assessment process that ranks agent: commodity combinations based on two factors: severity and frequency. FDA employed ORM to prioritize risks, target resources and focus our efforts on short-term accomplishments.
Prior Notice System Interface: As a result of the Bioterrorism Act, FDA must receive prior notice before food is imported or offered for import into the United States. Brokers or exporters may use CBP systems- ABI/ACS or FDA's system-PNSI to comply.
Actions taken to avoid an incident or to intervene to stop an incident from occurring.
In the context of NIPP, to prioritize is the process of using risk assessment results to identify where risk-reduction efforts are most needed and subsequently which protective actions should be instituted in order to have the greatest effect.
The return-to-service activities that industry and government must undertake to assure consumers the products will be safe and secure following an event. The development, coordination and execution of service- and site-restoration plans for impacted communities and the reconstitution of government operations and services through individual, private sector, non-governmental and public assistance programs.
Activities that address the short-term, direct effects of an incident (e.g., save and limit loss of life and property, meet basic human needs, execution of emergency plans, apply intelligence to lessen consequences, immunizations, law enforcement operations).
Food and Agriculture - Sector Coordinating Council: A self-organized, self-run and self-governed committee, composed of members in the food and agriculture sector that serves as the GCC/government's point of entry into each sector (i.e., plant and animal producers, manufacturers, restaurants, retail, warehouses and agriculture production) for developing and coordinating a wide range of infrastructure protection activities and issues (e.g., research and development, outreach, information sharing, vulnerability assessments/prioritization, shielding and recovery).
Spore-forming bacteria: One of four types of biological agents (e.g., Bacillus anthracis).
Strategic Partnership Program Agroterrorism Initiative: An initiative among federal and state government agencies and private sector volunteers to provide government and industry with a more complete sector-wide perspective of food and agriculture defense. Under the initiative, vulnerability assessments will be conducted in the food and agriculture sector to help distinguish between real and perceived food defense vulnerabilities and risks within the food and agriculture sector. It also will assist in identifying potential mitigation measures and strategies that may be appropriate for the food and agriculture sector. In addition, the SPPA will assist in the identification of research needs and the allocation of research investments to address priority needs.
Sector-Specific Agencies: CIP Agencies that have primary responsibility for the Sector industry (e.g., DHHS and USDA are responsible for food and agriculture, Department of the Treasury is responsible for banking and finance, DOT and DHS are responsible for transportation systems).
Sector-Specific Plan: Developed by each SSA, this plan supports the same risk management approach and key steps in NIPP. This plan determines the processes used, the implementation of these processes, and the status of efforts supporting this plan.
An indicator of possible violence, harm or danger that includes both intent and capabilities.
Top Officials: A national-level, multi-agency, multi-jurisdictional, "real-time", limited-notice weapons of mass destruction (WMD) response exercise, designed to better prepare senior government officials to effectively respond to an actual terrorist attack involving WMD. In addition, TOPOFF involves law enforcement, emergency management first responders, and other non-governmental officials. Short of an actual attack, such exercises are the best possible way to train responders, gauge preparedness, and identify areas for improvement.
U.S. Animal Health Association: USAHA is a science-based, non-profit, organization that provides a national forum for animal health issues. USAHA works with state and federal governments, universities, veterinarians, livestock producers, national livestock and poultry organizations, research scientists, the extension service and seven foreign countries to control livestock diseases in the United States.
U.S. Department of Agriculture: USDA supports the U.S. food and agriculture system by provide leadership on food, agriculture, natural resources, and related issues based on sound public policy and science, and efficient management.
Vegetative bacteria, protozoa, and viruses: One of four types of biological agents (e.g., Salmonella).
A weakness in the design, implementation or operation of an asset or system that can be exploited by an adversary or disrupted by a natural hazard.
Water soluble, heat stable chemicals: One of three types of chemical agents (e.g., cyanide).