What is the N.C. Food Safety and Defense Task Force?

The Task Force is a multi-agency, multi-stakeholder partnership designed to improve the protection of the food supply in North Carolina. The Task Force is comprised of members with relevant expertise drawn from the ranks of academia, private industry, state and local government agencies, the law enforcement community, and technical professionals. The Task Force is chaired jointly by the Commissioner of Agriculture, the Secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, and the Secretary of Health and Human Services through their various designees.

What is the purpose of the Task Force?

The duties of the Task Force, as specified within Executive Order Number 38, are as follows:

  • Partner with state and federal agencies to conduct focused studies of the vulnerability of the State's food system to criminal and terrorist acts, and make recommendations regarding the following issues:
    • improving safety and security of the food supply system
    • reducing terrorism threat measures
    • improving food safety and defense mitigation and response plans
    • implementing or coordinating training for key stakeholders in the State's food supply system
  • Recommend legislation needed to improve the ability of State departments and agencies to protect the safety and defense of the State's food supply and the agricultural industry base, including legislation to protect sensitive and proprietary information of the State's food supply system, safety and defense vulnerability information, and defense plans that, if compromised, would heighten the exposure of the State's food supply system to criminal or terrorist acts.
  • Recommend budget, staffing, and resource adjustments necessary to improve the capability of State departments and agencies to protect the safety and defense of the State's food supply system and agricultural industrial base.
  • Prepare an annual report no later than the 15th of December each year that includes any recommendations or proposals for changes in laws, rules, and programs that the Task Force determines to be appropriate to enhance food safety and defense in the State.