The bio-terrorism summit of the Midwest Governor’s Conference wrapped up last night in Omaha. Dr. Beth Lautner with the Des Moines-based National Pork Board was there. She says farmers have an interest in security, from the national down to the herd level.She says it’s important for producers to have good security practices figured out and use them on the farm, as well as taking part in the national bio-security process. It might not be the twin towers, but an Iowa farm could conceivably be a target of terrorist attack, according to Dr. Lautner.Lautner says the nation’s food supply could be a target and plans should include intelligence that could prevent it, and the infrastructure to respond if there is an animal disease used in an attack. She says it’s important to ensure people have confidence in the security and safety of our food supply. Lautner says the tracking of the West Nile virus shows how an animal disease can also signal a health danger to humans. She also points to the importance of good lab facilities in detecting and responding to disease outbreaks or attacks. Representatives from Iowa and the other dozen member states attended the two-day agro-terrorism forum.
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