Food Fraud Part 1: The Globalization and Complexity of Today’s Food Network: A Recipe for Food Fraud

Food, Food Manufacturing & Supply Chain, Food Safety & Regulation, Food Sustainability & Environment,
  • Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Globalization of the food supply, and the resulting complexity in supply chains, has arguably increased regulatory challenges and risks to consumers. Food fraud is a particularly challenging risk since it is intentional in nature, and designed to evade regulatory and quality assurance systems. Regulations resulting from Food Safety Modernization Act legislation will likely place increased responsibility on the food industry to prevent and detect food fraud along their supply chains.

This presentation will address:

  • A brief background of NCFPD and our collaborations with other organizations
  • The vulnerability of our food system in the context of a complex, globalized supply chain
  • What we know about the history of food fraud
  • What NCFPD has learned through reviewing and cataloging historical incidents of food fraud
  • An overview of recent food fraud incidents, including melamine adulteration of dairy products in China
  • The importance of partnerships, global collaboration, and information sharing
  • The need for a holistic approach when evaluating risk and vulnerability in supply chains
  • The need to shift to a prevention-focused strategy for food fraud


Karen Everstine, Ph.D. Research Associate National Center for Food Protection and Defense (NCFPD) University of MinnesotaResearch Associate National Center for Food Protection and Defense (NCFPD) University of Minnesota

Karen is a Research Associate at the National Center for Food Protection and Defense (NCFPD), a Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence based at the University of Minnesota. NCFPD was launched in 2004 as a research consortium to addresses the vulnerability of the food system to intentional contamination with biological or chemical agents. Karen directs multiple federally-funded research projects focused on mitigating the risk of food fraud, or what FDA calls economically motivated adulteration (EMA) of foods. This research has received funding from the Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Current research efforts are aimed at assessing the true scope of food fraud, identifying vulnerable points in the supply chains for food products, and developing algorithms to incorporate “non-traditional” data sources into food fraud risk models. Karen also sits on the United States Pharmacopeia Expert Panel on Food Ingredients Intentional Adulterants where she contributes to the development of tools for assessing the vulnerability of foods and ingredients to fraud.

Prior to her food fraud work NCFPD, Karen conducted food safety research as a foodborne disease epidemiologist at the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), an agency known nationwide as a successful model for conducting foodborne disease surveillance and outbreak investigations. While at MDH, Karen conducted numerous outbreak investigations and contributed to CDC-funded studies aimed at describing food service practices and identifying contributing factors to outbreaks. She received her PhD and MPH from the University of Minnesota

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Who Should Attend?

This eCongress will be of interest to anyone interested in preventing food fraud and ensuring the safety, quality and authenticity of the food and drink sector:

  • Food manufacturers
  • Ingredient & raw material suppliers
  • Retailers & distributors
  • Food Safety Authorities
  • Packaging companies
  • Certification & standards agencies
  • Consumer groups
  • Food scientists
  • Academics & researchers
  • Customs and border protection
  • Associations & non-profits

Including Executives, Owners and Plant managers responsible for:

  • Brand Protection
  • Supply Chain
  • Packaging Development and Manufacturing
  • Logistics
  • Procurement
  • Labelling
  • Traceability
  • Audit/testing
  • Product Safety
  • Finance
  • Advertising
  • Information Systems
  • Package Engineering/Technology
  • Corporate Security
  • Intellectual Property
  • Trademarks
  • Regulatory Affairs
  • Ethics & Compliance
  • Shipping/Receiving Personnel

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