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Salinas Valley CWA to host agro-terrorism awareness seminar

A seminar focusing on agro-terrorism awareness for growers, shippers and pest control advisors is scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 12. This introductory hands on workshop will provide training on agroterrorism and an opportunity to learn about agricultural biosecurity and emerging plant diagnostic and control systems.

The meeting will present concepts and practical principles of awareness, preparedness, diagnostics, identification of high risk pests and diseases and help local front line agribusienss with hands on and practical training scenarios. The session will explore both the potential impacts of agroterrorism from a food safety and defense perspective, lesions in understanding counter terrorism as well as hands on training for first detectors.

Speakers include:

• Mary Ellen Taylor, Public Affairs Specialist FDA -- “Food Defense — What Agriculture Needs to Know”

• Tom Sidebottom, Special Assistant for Science FDA — “Understanding Counter-Terrorism” and Responding with the Food Emergency Response Network (FERN)

• Steve Koike, UC Cooperative Extension Farm Advisor in Plant Pathology — “Coastal crops—How to Respond to Potential Impacts of Agroterrorism”

• Richard Hoenisch, Univ. of California Davis, National Plant Diagnostic Network, First Detector Program Training a hands on and practical approach for the agricultural industry

The seminar is sponsored by Salinas Valley CWA and co-hosted by Monterey Bay CAPCA, Grower Shipper Association of Central California, Monterey County Agricultural Commissioner, Monterey County Coop. Extension, and California Lettuce Research Board.

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