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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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NMSU, Laguna Pueblo hosts agricultural terrorism preparedness workshop

LAGUNA - As a border state, New Mexico could be the first defense against an act of agricultural terrorism. In a continued effort to prepare for such an attack, Laguna Pueblo and New Mexico State University Cooperative Extension Service are hosting a three-day Preparedness and Response to Agricultural Terrorism class April 14-16 at Route 66 Casino Hotel Convention Center, located off Interstate 40 at Exit 140.

Southwest Border Food Safety and Defense Center (SWBFSDC), housed at NMSU's College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences, is sponsoring the training that will be conducted by the National Center for Biomedical Research and Training, Academy of Counter Terrorism Education at Louisiana State University.

"This is the most comprehensive class available to teach how to recognize and deal with issues that might affect agriculture whether from accidental, natural or criminal cause," said Billy Dictson, co-director of SWBFSDC office of biosecurity. "This class focuses more on livestock than anything else but deals with all aspects of preparedness."

The training will prepare community planners, as well as those in the food production chain, who would be among the first to note the effects of an attempted attack on the nation's food supply with information to respond to an act of agricultural terrorism. Besides agricultural producers, participants will be key members of community planning teams, supervisors dealing with food production, transportation, delivery and final distribution, and emergency planners from state and local governments.

This is the first of two such training in New Mexico this year. It will be offered as a rewritten, two-day training on May 6-7 in Roswell and May 9-10 in Hobbs.

For more information, contact Jeff Bader, NMSU's Bernalillo County Extension director, at (505) 243-1386 or Ken Tiller, Pueblo of Laguna emergency management coordinator at (505) 552-5794. Register on line at http://cahe.nmsu.edu/prepare/.