Ingredient integrity is an important component in ensuring that all feed ingredients are safe. The American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) gives feed plants the following checklist of nine points to ensure feed safety:
1. Purchase only from an approved list of suppliers.
2. Visit new suppliers, request samples and lab analysis, review their quality programs and procedures for positive product identification, their relationships with contract haulers, and product security during transport.
3. Label and use only approved ingredients for feed production in accordance with federal and state regulations.
4. Have the supplier or transportation company certify that the container is clean before loading. No hazardous materials may be hauled prior to, or in combination with, feed ingredients.
5. Secure truck trailers, both bag and bulk, once loaded. In the case of soft-top trailers, measures should be taken to prevent unauthorized persons from accessing and adulterating the shipments.
6. Secure rail car hatches and discharge gates. When using seals, record the seal numbers on the bill of lading. Upon receipt, verify the seal numbers.
7. Inspect packaged products for seal tampering.
8. Take, inspect for known physical characteristics and retain samples prior to and during unloading.
9. Maintain a receiving log for all receipts, including rejected items.
AFIA also says that ensuring the physical security of buildings and grounds is an important step in overall biosecurity. The organization lists the following points for companies to consider:
-Security lighting, perimeter fencing and controlled gate access. Depending upon the size of the property and type of business, an off-hours security guard may be warranted.
-Use electronic security devices, such as motion detectors, door alarms, video cameras and alarms linked to an off-site security system as effective deterrents.
-Make certain door hardware is of industrial design.
-Install guards on exterior ladders, protecting them from unauthorized use and preventing access to the top of bulk storage tanks. Discharge gates of all binds should be electronically or mechanically secured to prevent unauthorized release.
-Padlock entry and discharge points of exterior liquid tanks (above and below ground) when not in use.
-Provide additional security by employing secured covers over outside receiving pits.
-Lock all vehicles parked outside at night or during non-business hours.
-Secure or park containers inside, whether they are empty or loaded with product.
-Request local law enforcement to patrol company premises on a regular, but unpredictable basis. A facility that “looks” secure will frequently discourage the casual prankster.
-Encourage employees to report suspicious behavior. Employees can assist in protecting the company’s assets and its reputation, and in ensuring uninterrupted operations and service.
-Restrict access to computer process control and data systems, secure online communications, and safeguard them with virus protection. Store backups off-site.
-Emphasize security when in new construction planning and design.
For more information on biosecurity, go to www.afia.org.