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Perceptions of Florida Beef Cattle Producers on Preparedness for an Agroterrorism Attack


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PERCEPTIONS OF FLORIDA BEEF CATTLE PRODUCERS ON PREPAREDNESS FOR AN AGROTERRORISM ATTACK By JODI LYNN DEGRAW A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLOR IDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF SCIENCE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2005

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Copyright 2005 by Jodi Lynn DeGraw

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This document is dedicated to the li fe and memory of Terry M. DeGraw.

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iv ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I would like to express my deepest appreciation to my committee members, Drs. Carol Lehtola, Shannon Washburn, and Roger Nordstedt. Their wisdom, encouragement, and patience during my research journey were a blessing to me. I would also like to thank Dr. Tim Marshall, Dr. Matt Hersom, and Kathleen Eubanks for the success of my survey. The cooperation of the Alachua C ounty Cattlemens Association and the Beef Cattle Short Course participants was greatly appreciated. I want to thank my fellow Safety grad students for all of their support and encouragement along the way. Discu ssing our research passions, goals, accomplishments, and discouragements strengthened and motivated me more than they know. I owe my deepest gratitude to Elizab eth Wang (girl) for always listening and helping me, and I consider her my confidant and friend forever. Bill Todds belief in my talent to complete my masters degree was always a comfort to me. Ed Drannbauers encouragement and ability to make me laugh was a blessing in frustrating times. I would like to thank my mother for ins tilling in me the motivation and burning desire to learn from a very young age. I cr edit her and my late father for setting a positive educational example and always encouraging me to better myself. My twin sister, Dawn, is my best friend and without he r love I would not be the person I am today. I thank her for always being there for me, through thick and thi n. Furthermore, my grandparents, Jim and Jean Milsop, and my Uncle Jim were supportive throughout my college career and I appreciat e their continued guidance.

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v I would like to thank the Co llege of Agricultural and Life Sciences at UF for allowing me the chance to get the best educ ation possible. Also, the people of the Agricultural and Biological Engineering Depart ment made my time at UF special, I will hold each of them near and dear to my heart. Special thanks go to Charles Brown for assisting me with my survey and NASD work. Finally, I thank James for his love and en couragement during this rigorous journey. He provided me with advice, love, and s upport when I needed it the most. Our time together has been magical, and I credit him for changing my life for the better.

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vi TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS.................................................................................................iv LIST OF TABLES...........................................................................................................viii ABSTRACT....................................................................................................................... ..x CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION........................................................................................................1 Problem Statement........................................................................................................5 Objectives..................................................................................................................... 5 Definition of Terms......................................................................................................6 2 REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE..............................................................................7 History of Biological Warfare......................................................................................8 Accessibility to Biological Weapons..........................................................................10 Agroterrorism.............................................................................................................14 Mad Cow Disease................................................................................................15 Human Risk.........................................................................................................18 Economic Impact.................................................................................................22 Risk Perceptions.........................................................................................................24 Risk Communication..................................................................................................27 Chapter Summary.......................................................................................................30 3 METHODOLOGY.....................................................................................................31 Research Design.........................................................................................................32 Population...................................................................................................................33 Data Collection...........................................................................................................34 Instrumentation...........................................................................................................34 Variables.....................................................................................................................3 9 Data Analysis..............................................................................................................39 Chapter Summary.......................................................................................................40

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vii 4 RESULTS...................................................................................................................41 Objective One.............................................................................................................42 Objective Two............................................................................................................44 Objective Three..........................................................................................................46 Part I....................................................................................................................46 Part II...................................................................................................................50 Objective Four............................................................................................................53 Demographics.............................................................................................................56 Chapter Summary.......................................................................................................58 5 SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS.............................60 Objectives...................................................................................................................60 Procedure....................................................................................................................60 Conclusions.................................................................................................................61 Objective One......................................................................................................61 Objective Two.....................................................................................................63 Objective Three...................................................................................................64 Objective Four.....................................................................................................68 Limitations of the Study.............................................................................................70 Summary of Findings.................................................................................................70 Recommendations.......................................................................................................74 APPENDIX A SURVEY INSTRUMENT..........................................................................................76 B INFORMED CONSENT FORM................................................................................89 C INFORMED CONSENT SCRIPT.............................................................................90 D SURVEY COMMENTS.............................................................................................91 REFERENCES..................................................................................................................95 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH.............................................................................................99

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viii LIST OF TABLES Table page 1 Examples of biological warf are during the past millennium.....................................9 2 Crucial biological agents..........................................................................................11 3 Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies.........................................................16 4 The Seven Cardinal Rules of Risk Communication.................................................28 5 Questions Rating the Level of Perceived Threat......................................................35 6 Attendance at a workshop/information session........................................................43 7 Suspected agroterrorism on your ope ration, whom would you contact...................43 8 Have you made considerable invest ments (time, money, or effort).........................44 9 Reported Means: Importance of the Safeguard........................................................45 10 Reported Means: Degree to which you Practice......................................................46 11 Frequency data: Importance of the Safeguard..........................................................47 12 Frequency data: Degree to which you Practice........................................................48 13 I think an act of ag roterrorism could happen somewhere in the U.S.......................49 14 I think an act of ag roterrorism could happen somewhere in Florida.......................50 15 I think an act of agroterror ism could happen on my operation................................50 16 I feel prepared for an agroterrorism att ack or biosecurity threat to my operation...50 17 Part II Descriptive Statistics.....................................................................................52 18 Foot-and-Mouth/BSE influenced operation secur ity decisions...............................53 19 Likeliness of contacting for bi osecurity threat questions.........................................54 20 Where would you look for published information?.................................................55

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ix 21 Preferred agroterrorism educat ional materials delivery method..............................56 22 What is the size of your operation?..........................................................................57 23 Operation Demographics..........................................................................................57

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x Abstract of Thesis Presen ted to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science PERCEPTIONS OF FLORIDA BEEF CATTLE PRODUCERS ON PREPAREDNESS FOR AN AGROTERRORISM ATTACK By Jodi Lynn DeGraw August 2005 Chair: Carol J. Lehtola Major Department: Agricultura l and Biological Engineering The purpose of this study was to iden tify Florida beef producers current knowledge levels of agroterrorism and simulta neously measure perceived levels of an agroterrorism risk to the opera tion. The dependent variable fo r the study was the level of preparedness practices on a Florida beef cattl e operation for an agroterrorism attack. The independent variable was the risk perceptions of the beef producer, whereby risk is the intensity of the feeling to a potential attac k. A correlational research design guided this study with the aid of a descrip tive survey. Of the 137 survey s distributed, 91 participants returned the instrument for a response rate of 66.4%. This convenience sample consisted of Florida beef cattle producers in attendan ce at the UF/IFAS Beef Cattle Short Course held on May 4-6, 2005. The survey data were analyzed and de scriptive statistics were reported using SPSS.5 for Windows. Results confirmed that the majority of participants felt at risk for an agroterrorism attack and felt unp repared for an agroterrorism attack on their

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xi farm. However, the respondents rated nearly all of the farm safeguards as being minor or of no importance, rarely or never practici ng these safeguards. The preferred contact person concerning agroterrorism and biosecurity questions was the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. The preferred source of published agroterrorism materials was the University of Florida. Ye t, the following persons and agencies should be prepared and knowledgeable about agroterror ism, as they were rated favorably by the population as contact sources: the University of Florida -IFAS Cooperative Extension Offices and Extension agents, law enforcement, veterinarians, and the World Wide Web. The preferred method of deliver y for agroterrorism educatio nal materials was a weekend training workshop. As of January 1, 2004 there were 950,000 beef cows in Florida, ranking the state 12th in beef cows nationally and third for St ates east of the Missi ssippi Rover (Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, 2004).The study sample population of beef producers consisted of a considerable portion of large operations, since 26.4% (N=24) of the respondents reported over 1,000 animals during the peak time of production. Moreover, these large operations account for a large portion of Floridas economic value in the beef cattle industry, as 14.3% (N=13) of th e population reported an average annual gross receipt value of $1,000,000 or more. Overall, this study provided insight into the development of educational materials and programs to promote the use of agroterroris m security practices by Florida beef cattle producers.

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1 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION Following the September 11th terrorist attacks, the need for protecting our country has taken on a new definition. Minutes afte r two hijacked airlin ers crashed into the World Trade Center on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, the Federal Aviation Administration stopped all flights from U.S. air ports. It marked the first time that air traffic came to a halt nationwide (Meadows, 2004, p. 21). Soon after this attack, the United States was terrorized with letters containing anthrax spores in October 2001. These acts of terrorism were unexpected and a llowed the criminals responsible to remain undetected. Just as acts of terrorism on buildings and thr ough the mail can happen in any place at any time, criminals can also tain t the American food supply quickly without being caught. The vulnerability of the food supply could allow terro rists access to cripple the United States. A major problem is the inab ility to identify crimin al intent rapidly in outbreaks of foodborne illness caused by common pathogens or animal-borne diseases (Lee, Harbison, & Draughon, 2003, p. 664). One of the most effective ways to defend the United States against future terrorist attacks is the use of preparation and defense plans. Preparedness planning is critical to assess our susceptibility to eliminate contam ination and to devise the most effective prevention strategies. Countries must do su rveys of their particular water and foodproduction systems to assess the risks of c ontamination (Khan, Swerdlow & Juranek, 2001, p. 11). Deliberate contamination of the food supply has occurred in the past and continues to be a threat today. For exampl e, in September, 1984, members of a religious

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2 cult contaminated salad bars in The Dalle s, Oregon, with Salmonella typhimurium; 751 people developed salmonellosis. This atta ck was reportedly a trial run for a more extensive attack that was pla nned to disrupt local elections later that year (Sobel, Khan, & Swerdlow, 2002, p. 874). This is an exampl e of Americans attack ing fellow citizens, thus solidifying the need to apply food s ecurity techniques and e ducational programs both in small towns and globally. Although many Americans purchase and cons ume food with confidence, there is reason to be concerned for the safety of the food supply. Florid as geographic location and extensive coastline increase the opportuni ty for terrorist accessibility. Food and water are quite satisfactory vectors for pathoge ns causing both morbid ity and mortality in target populations that are conf ined by geographic, industrial, or societal isolation (Lee, Harbison, & Draughon, 2003, p. 666). For example, the abundance and low cost of food around the nation has lulled Americans into a comfort zone that could be ruined by a biological terrorist attack. Because of the importance of agriculture to American economic, political, and social st ability, addressing the bioterro rism threat to agriculture has taken on a new urgency (Leviten & Olexa, 2003, p. 64). The State of Florida is at increased risk due to unique geographic features. Florida has been referred to as a sentinel state because of the probability of a foreign animal or plant disease or agroterrorism event affec ting Florida first (Christy, Wang, Lehtola, & Brown, 2004). With 14 major seaports, 131 airports with public access, and 20 commercial airports, Floridas bor ders are truly porous and sus ceptible to entry (Christy et al., 2004, p. 8). As a result of Floridas a ccessibility, over 75 million tourists enter the state annually, six million visiting from foreign countries (Christy et al., 2004).

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3 The need to preserve the security of Amer ican food is an important matter that has always been a priority, as de struction of crops, animals, or farmlands have historically been used as weapons. Moreover, agricultu ral targets are considered soft targets, because of their low profile and accessibili ty for terrorists to attack with limited navigability (Kohnen, 2000). The successful protection of the ag ricultural production industry is a key aspect in maintainin g the normal life Americans have become accustomed to living. Maintaining a safe f ood supply is a necessity; Contamination and adulteration of food and wate r for selected target populat ions are ideal methods for terrorists (Lee, Harbison, & Draughon, 2003, p. 666). In order to assess farm safety practic es on Florida animal production operations, DeGraw (2004) surveyed the population of C ounty Extension Directors in Floridas 67 counties. In response to the survey inform ation, it was apparent that most counties in Florida do not have a disaster preparedness plan or have the resources available to assist public livestock owners in a time of de vastation (DeGraw, 2004, p. 2). The study confirmed a need for county emergency manage ment plans and a deficiency was noted in the availability of information and training material for animal operators in order to effectively manage animals and employees dur ing disastrous situations (DeGraw, 2004). A recently developed program, Florida Stat e Agricultural Response Team (SART), was developed to reduce disaster response deficiencies and SAR Ts mission is to empower Floridians with training and res ources to enhance animal and agricultural disaster response (Wang, Lehtola, & Br own, 2005, p. 2). In 2005, the SART program provided training workshops to introduce the SART curricu lum, which included lesson plans, participant workbooks, and table-top si mulations for the gene ral subject areas.

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4 Preliminary module topics included the core SART topi cs of Incident Command System, Aquaculture, Pets & Disasters, Pl ant Pathology, Livestock and Horses, Insect and Arthropod Issues, Agroterrorism Threats in Florida, and Biosecurity (Wang et al. 2005, p. 3). The Florida SART program is a pr ogressively evolving plan for a response to animal and agricultural emergencies and disasters (Wang et al., 2005). Although agroterrorism agains t our food supply could potentially cause Americans to go hungry, the economic impact would be catastrophic; agricultu re is the largest sector of the United States economy, accounti ng for approximately one trillion dollars in overall impact annually, with an export ma rket of approximately $190 billion (Lee, Harbison, & Draughon, 2003, p. 664). The economic cost of a biological disease outbreak would affect both agricultural pr oduction operations and Un ited States exports, resulting in lost revenue. The deliberate introduction of a pathogen-fungus, bacterium, virus, or insect pest -into U.S. livestock, poultry, or cr ops could cause a disease outbreak that would drive food prices up, halt valuab le exports, and ultimately cost taxpayers billions of dollars in lost revenue and industry renewal costs (Kohnen, 2000, p. 2). Consumer confidence is an important cons ideration in order to sell products and promote a social environment that successfully markets a food item. If consumers have low confidence in United States beef products then sales will d ecrease as Americans choose to consume chicken, fish, and pork as an alternative. Another reason to be concerned about a bioterrorist attack on agricultu ral production is th e centralization and related vulnerability of specific industries such as beef cattl e. Prior to the 1970s, most cattle and livestock operations were small-scale and numerous. However, as agriculture has become more industrial and corporate in nature, the number of specialized feedlots

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5 have increased with lots of over 32,000 head of cattle increasing to 42 percent of all feedlot capacity in this country (Leviten & Olexa, 2003, p. 65). Problem Statement Why then should Americans, and specifical ly Floridians, be concerned about the possibility of an agroterrorism attack? Is Fl orida at more risk fo r the introduction of a foreign disease or contaminated food product? Based on the above concerns, the purpose of this study was to identify beef produce rs current knowledge leve ls of agroterrorism and simultaneously measure perceived levels of bioterrorism risk to the Florida beef cattle industry. The focus of the study will be to identify specific concerns and sensitive areas of agroterrorism, in hopes of formulati ng strategies to alleviate confusion with educational materials. The dependent variab le for the study was the level of preparedness for an agroterrorist attack. The independent variable was the risk pe rceptions of the beef producer, whereby risk is the intensity of fee ling a potential attack to their beef cattle operation. This study involved large-scale beef operations and was designed to gain insight and information from producers, and attempted to identify positive and negative perceptions of bioagent protec tive actions. We firmly believe that ignorance is not bliss, and that heightened surveillance and risk mana gement are the best extant defenses against bioterrorism, (Lee, Harbison, & Draughon, 2003, p. 669). Objectives The objectives of this study were to 1. Identify the current levels of knowledge a bout agroterrorism held by Floridas beef cattle producers, 2. Identify the level of preparedness against agroterrorism attack(s), 3. Determine the risk perceptions of the beef producer to bioterrorism and agroterrorism, and

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6 4. With these data, determine producers pref erences for the delivery of agroterrorism educational materials. Definition of Terms For the purpose of this study, the definition of food security is the ready availability of nutritious, adequate, and safe food without having to resort to emergency food supplies, scavenging, stealing, or other desperate strategies (Foxell, 2001). Agroterrorism is defined as the intentional introduc tion of animal or plant pests or the cultivation or production of pathogenic bacteria fungi, parasites, prot ozoans, viruses, or their toxic products for the purposes of cau sing poultry, livestock, crop, soil, or human disease, poisoning, or death (Foxell, 2001). Agroterrorism can include spreading a virulent disease among confined feed lot an imals, poisoning civil or agricultural water sources, the introduction of pe sts intended to destroy food cr ops, or the use of food-borne pathogens to cause human disease. Bioterrorism is defined as an act of any person knowingly or maliciously introducing disease-ca using agents or orga nisms to an animal, plant or human population, thus threatening food and water resources as well as human and animal life (EDEN, 2003).

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7 CHAPTER 2 REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE The September 11th terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center had an impact on attitudes toward United States security and in creased the perceived risk of terrorism on American society. For example, the Unite d States government immediately altered governmental structure and priorities to provide better protection. The federal government went into a crisis-managem ent mode (Chung, 2002), a homeland security organization was established to look at in ternal threats (Atchison, 2002; Fenner, 2002; Huddy, Khatib, & Capelos, 2002), and federal funds were redirected into defense spending and other relevant areas (Daws on & Guinnessey, 2002) (as cited by Powell & Self, 2004, p. 56). The term risk is often associated with thoughts of hazards. Accordingly Pidgeon defines risk perceptions as p eoples beliefs, attitudes, judgm ents and feelings, as well as the wider social or cultural values and di spositions that people adopt, towards hazards and their benefits (Bostrom, 2001, p. 102). However, most humans would vary their behavior when risk for a situation increas es. A result of the terrorist attacks was emotional insecurities and a higher sense of personal risk felt by the American population (Powell & Self, 2004). One theory that attempts to explain th is reaction is Taylors 1983 cognitive adaptation theory (Powell & Se lf, 2004). Cognitive adaptatio n occurs as people assess situations and draw upon past ps ychological resources to aid in coping. Therefore, when

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8 a hostile event occurs, this method predicts that an individual will engage in the following three activities to he lp cope (Powell & Self, 2004): 1. A search for meaning in an event or experience 2. An attempt to gain mastery over the event or its consequences 3. The development of positive illusions to cope with the situation Furthermore, a key variable in the above -described theory is the concept of personalized risk. Personalized risk is a cognitive component of the theory that can influence whether an individual makes behavior al changes (adaptati ons) in response to a new event or experience (Pow ell & Self, 2004, p. 58). This additional idea, associated with Taylors 1983 theory, regards an individual s belief about the probability of personal injury or property damage and an indivi duals perception of pe rsonal control. This theoretical notion is the driving force of this research study. In the event of a disaster on a Florida livestock operation, how prepared are farm operators and employees? Is the level of pr eparedness related to high per ceived risk or low perceived risk? Is a low level of prep aredness because of a lack of available information about agroterrorism and bioagents, or confusion a bout how to prepare the farm? In conclusion, knowing the baseline knowle dge, perceptions, and rates of high-risk behaviors in a target group is essential for the development of effective educati onal interventions in food safety (Haapala & Probart, 2004, p. 72). History of Biological Warfare The threat of biological warfare is not a new concept for the United States. Man has used poisoning agents for assassination pu rposes since the beginning of civilization, not only against individual enemies, but also in times of war against armies (Frischknecht, 2003).

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9 Table 1. Examples of biological warfare during the past millennium (Frischknecht, 2003) Year Event 1155 Emperor Barbarossa poisons water we lls with human bodies, Tortona, Italy 1346 Mongols catapult bodies of plague vic tims over the city walls of Caffa, Crimean Peninsula 1495 Spanish mix wine with blood of leprosy pa tients to sell to their French foes, Naples, Italy 1650 Polish fire saliva from rabid dogs towards their enemies 1675 First deal between German and French forces not to use poison bullets 1763 British distribute blankets from smallpox patients to native Americans 1797 Napoleon floods the plains around Mantua Italy to enhance the spread of malaria 1863 Confederates sell clothing from yello w fever and smallpox patients to Union troops, USA Furthermore, in United States history, during World War I Imperial Germany initiated a program of bioagr icultural warfare by shipping an thrax and glanders infected horses and mules from America to British and Fr ench armies. The animals were initially infected with needles subsequently allowing infection to spread naturally through fecal matter, coughing, or nasal discharge on the boa t ride. Ultimately, more than 3,500 horses were infected and rendered useless for wartime service (Foxell, 2001). More research and experimentation we re developed during World War II, in particular the United States agricultural program focused on large-scale production and weaponization of anti-crop agents (Cameron, Pate, & Vogel, 2001). By the time the United States renounced all biological warfare in 1969, it had researched wheat stem rust, rice blast, rye stem rust, foot-and-mouth, ri nderpest, and brucello sis (Cameron, Pate, & Vogel, 2001). In recent history, the United States ha s been impacted by the intentional food contamination of salad bars in 1984, and again in 1994 when an estimated 224,000 people in the United States were infected dur ing an outbreak of Sa lmonella enteritidis.

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10 The Salmonella enteritidis was caused by cont amination of pasteuri zed liquid ice cream that was transported in tanker trucks. Th e ice cream was then distributed nationally resulting in one of the la rgest foodborne disease outbreak s in United States history (Sobel, Khan, & Swerdlow, 2002). Unfortunately, the world is witnessing a renewed interest in biological warfare and terrorism owing to several factors, in cluding the discovery that Iraq has been developing biological weapons (Zilinskas, 1997) several bestselling novels describing biological attacks, and the anthrax letters after the terrorist a ttacks on September 11, 2001 (Frischknecht, 2003, p. S51). In orde r to understand the scope and power of biological agents, Table 2 from the Centers fo r Disease Control lists the disease pathogen and time period of abuse. Accessibility to Biological Weapons From the information about bioagents liste d in Table 2, the history and abuse of such pathogens illustrates the availability and ease with wh ich countries can cause harm. In fact, individuals and non-governmental gr oups can easily obtain access to dangerous biological agents. The world-wide connect ion and accessibility of the Internet has allowed communications and computer ha ckers a source for producing and creating harmful products. According to Dr. Glenn Mc Gee, a biologist as well as a computer security expert, insecurities in the Internet itself allow the possibility of viral hacking, wherein would-be agroterrorists no longer n eed to find a tiny sample of smallpox [or bioagricultural pathogens on the open, gray, or black markets], when, as hackers, they can synthesize it from scratch on a $1,000 iM ac connected to a $10,000 gene synthesizer (Foxell, 2001, p. 109).

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11 Table 2. Crucial biological ag ents (Frischknecht, 2003) Disease Pathogen Abused* Category A (Major public health hazards) Anthrax Bacillus antracis (B) First World War Second World War Soviet Union, 1979 Japan, 1995 USA 2001 Botulism Clostridium botulinum (T) Hemorrhagic fever Marburg virus (V) Ebola virus (V) Arenavirus (V) Soviet bioweapons program Plague Yersinia pestis (B) Fourteenth-century Europe Second World War Smallpox Variola major (V) 18th century N. America Tularemia Francisella tularensis (B) Second World War Category B (public health hazards) Brucellosis Brucella (B) Cholera Encephalitis Vibrio cholerae (B) Alphaviruses (V) Second World War Second World War Food poisoning Salmonella, Shigella (B) Second World War USA, 1990s Glanders Burkholderia mallei (B) First World War Second World War Psittacosis Chlamydia psittaci (B) Q fever Coxiella burnetti (B) Typhus Rickettsia prowazekii (B) Second World War Various toxic syndromes Various bacteria Second World War Does not include time and place of produc tion, but only indicates where agents were applied and probably resulted in casualties, in war, in research or as a terror agent. Category C includes emerging pathogens that are made more pathogenic by genetic engineering, including hantav irus, Nipah virus, tick-borne encephalitis and hemorrhagic fever viruses, yellow fever viruses and multidrug-resistant bacteria. B, bacterium; P, parasite; T, toxin; V, virus.

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12 The ability of physical resources and the technology to email or post genetic codes and formulas through the Internet has allowed greater access to shared information at an extremely fast rate. Throughout the world, pe ople are educated with the techniques for growing and genetically manipulating microor ganisms; the Internet also provides an instantaneous wealth of information. In fact, through 2001, explicit instructions were posted online to guide an indi vidual through the process of producing a weaponized form of one of the agents of pr incipal concern (Henderson, 2004). Furthermore, the availability of bioagents that naturally occur in the environment make the proliferation of biological weapons seem attractive for people with limited resources. Biological weapons sometimes are referred to as the poor mans nuclear weapon because they can be produced inexpens ively, they require le ss technical staff and so little space or expensive equipment is needed (Henderson, 2004, p. 50). Moreover, if one were determined enough to produce biological agents, it has been estimated that a functioning laboratory could be developed for no more th an $250,000 (Henderson, 2004). Another benefit of biological weapons is th e combination of low co st of production with the opportunity to infect larg e numbers of people over a large area. A 1970 study by the World Health Organization (WHO) discovered that 50 kilograms of anthrax could result in 200,000 casualties in a medium-sized city such as Boston. The United States Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) has estimated that an attack with less than 100 kilograms of aerosolized anthrax spores could cause as many as 3 million casualties, which compares to the lethality of a th ermonuclear weapon (Koblentz, 2003/04). Although the government goes to great lengths to protect and m onitor the use of biotechnology, the positive aspect of educational research can al so be used as a cover for

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13 hostile purposes. The use of export controls has aided in the trade of national biological weapons, yet it is not foolproof for al l situations; Although domestic access to dangerous pathogens in the United States ha s been regulated since 1996, these pathogens (with the exception of variola major ) are available in nature a nd from a number of germ banks around the world (Koblentz, 2003/04, p. 94). Also, biological warfare agents provide a terrorist or state both diverse and flexible options fo r destruction. It has been noted in the literature that th ere are some thirty pathogens that have the physical and biological capabilities for a masscasualty weapon (Koblentz, 2003/04). As stated above, there are thousands of labor atories world-wide with at least one of the defined dangerous pathogens, and severa l select agents, such as anthrax, occur naturally. To further complicate the search to identify and destroy biological warfare factories, biological agents do not emit an identifying signal, as opposed to nuclear materials, so there is little to distinguish th e activities of a would-be bioterrorist in the laboratory from those of the other scien tists (Salerno et al., 2003) (Reppy, 2003). Considering the multiple obstacles that the United States has to overcome to detect another country, state, or organized group planning and pr oducing a biological warfare attack, it is apparent that the most effec tive protection is prep aredness planning using educational materials. Dr. Rocco Casagrande, Director, Homela nd Security Program Abt Associates, presented information in relation to prev ention of attacks on agriculture at the 2004 AgrowKnowledge Agroterrorism conference in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Dr. Casagrande listed specific measures to prevent an attack on agriculture. Create more rapid response disease teams, routinely de ploy idle teams for producer education, which includes 1)

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14 recognition of important diseas es, 2) Proper biosecurity prac tices, and 3) proper disease reporting structure (Casagrande, 2004). The Florida SART program is an up-andcoming solution to Floridas agroterrorism educational gaps, satisfying Casagrandes listed prevention measures. Agroterrorism As a result of recent terrorist activity a nd war with Iraq, agricultural bioterrorism has received increased attention and discus sion within academic, media, and government circles. Recent studies argue that agricult ural bioterrorism represents a new and dire threat to United States national secu rity (Cameron, Pate, & Vogel, 2001). The agricultural industry is vital to Americans stomachs as well as national economic stability. Considering the economics, agriculture accounts for 13% of the United States gross domestic product (Casagrande, 2002). The article Food as a Weapon describes the economic importance of agriculture as the la rgest sector of the United States economy, accounting for approximately one trillion dolla rs in overall impact annually, with an export market of approximately $190 b illion (Lee, Harbison, & Draughon, 2003, p. 664). Moreover, considering that United Stat es agriculture supports the nation with a safe, affordable, and abundant food s upply, and accounts for 15% of all global agricultural exports, agricultural terrorism is not simply killing animals and destroying crops; it is a method of crippling an economy (Lee, Harbison, & Draughon, 2003). Is this concern for the safety of the food supply a valid point? Do Americans need to think about ways to preserve the security and longevity of the nations food supply? The discovery and confirmation of a cow in the state of Washington that had mad cow disease, and was subsequently slaughtered a nd the meat shipped before being recalled raised concern about current ag ricultural system safeguards. This impacted not only the

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15 United States but also the world, as import bans were immediately enforced and the United States system of food processing sa fety was under critical inspection. In Washington state, when a single cowalrea dy butchered and shippe d out to restaurants and grocery storeswas diagnosed with ma d-cow disease roughly 30 nations responded with import bans or other sanctions (Heg land, 2004, p. 114). The cow was later traced to Canada, where it was born and raised; ye t, the United States suffered the economic consequences. The top foreign importer of beef from the United States, Japan, suspended imports worth approximately $1.4 billion a year after the Washington state cow Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (B SE) case (Takada, 2004). Mad Cow Disease Mad Cow Disease, known scientifically as Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy, or BSE, is a chronic degenerative disease that de stroys the central nervous system in cattle. BSE has been infecting animals for many genera tions. It is believed that this disease originated from the prion disease scrapie th at infects sheep. BSE is a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE). TSE an imal diseases found in the United States include scrapie in sheep and goa ts, chronic wasting disease in deer and elk, transmissible spongiform encephalopathy in mink, feline s pongiform encephalopat hy in cats, and in humans kuru, both classic and variant Creu tzfeldt-Jakob disease (USDA Fact Sheets, 2004). The cause of BSE has not yet been defined by scientists; but, the accepted theory is that the agent is a prion, or an abnormal cellular protein (USDA Fact Sheets, 2004).

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16 Table 3. Transmissible Spongiform En cephalopathies (Henley & Herrmann, 2004) Species affected Prion Disease Transmissible to humans? Mink Transmissible mink encephalopathy No Sheep and Goats Scrapie Histor ically no; questionable in newly discovered atypical cases Deer and Elk Chronic wasting diseas e Possible (under investigation) Cattle and Bison Bovine spongiform encephalopathy Yes (variant CJD) Humans Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease; variant CJD, Gerstmann-StrausslerScheinker Disease, Kuru, fatal familial insomnia Through contaminated medical products, instruments, possibly blood One positive characteristic of this disease is that it is not spread through animal-toanimal contact. Cattle become infected with BSE after consuming feed contaminated with the infectious agent. The contamina tion of cattle feed occu rs during the carcass rendering process. During rendering, carcasse s from which all consumable parts had been removed were milled and then decompos ed in large vats by boiling at atmospheric or higher pressures, producing an aqueous slur ry of protein under a layer of fat (tallow) (Brown, Will, Bradley, Asher, & Detwiler, 2001, p. 6). The fa t is then removed and the slurry is used to produce meat and bone meal product, which is subsequently packaged as animal feed. Therefore, the prions are pa ssed onto cattle by feeding them prion-infected meat and bone-meal produced from infected rendered animals. After it was determined that cattle were be ing infected from consuming cattle feed that contained meat and bone meal produc ts, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) decided to take action. The soluti on was decided in 1997, and stated that mammalian protein was no longer permitted in the manufacture of animal feed intended for cattle and/or other ruminants (USDA Fact Sheets, 2004). Although the source of

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17 contamination has been identified and control measures are being enforced, cattle are still being diagnosed. The delay in diagnosis is at tributed to the nature of BSE being a slow, progressive, incurable disease of the central nervous system in cat tle (Foxell, 2001). Prior to the December 30, 2003 discovery of the BSE cow in Washington the prevention measures that were followed to prevent BSE in the United States were (Henley & Herrmann, 2004): Import restrictions on bovine-derived consumer products from high-risk BSE countries. Prohibition of the use of ruminant derive d meat and bone meal in cattle feed. A surveillance system for BSE that invol ved annual testing of between 5000 and 20,000 cattle slaughtered for human consum ption (out of about 35 million cattle slaughtered per year). As a result of the BSE scare in December 2003, the USDA and FDA have added more stringent and all-encompassing guide lines to protect our food supply. These additional protective measures are (Henley & Herrmann, 2004): Defining high-risk materials banned for human consumption, including the entire vertebral column. Banning the use of advanced meat recovery systems on vertebral columns. These systems use brushes and air to blast soft tissue off of bone and led up to 30% of hamburger sampled to be contaminated with central nervous system tissue. Proposing an expanded annual surveill ance to include about 200,000 high-risk cattle (sick, suspect, dead) and a random sample of 20,000 normal cattle over 30 months old. Although the USDA and FDA are fighting fo r stronger food safeguards, are these new guidelines enough? Should consumers be confident about the food purchased at grocery stores and consumed in restaurants? The detection of BSE can onl y be confirmed through postmortem analysis of brain tissue. Therefore, the bovine has to be monitored while alive, subsequently exhibit signs

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18 and symptoms of BSE, and then be isolated a nd killed in order to te st the brain tissue. The disease incubation period is within the range of 30 months to eight years, with only a few rare exceptions in younger animals (US DA Fact Sheets, 2004). To cause even more concern for the safety of the meat supply, BSE cannot be killed through cooking, irradiation, or steri lization processes. Human Risk The United States enjoys a safe, affordab le, and abundant food supply, but can this source of food be destroyed by a terrorist attack? Do Americans have the right to be concerned that the food supply could cause death? Norman Schaad of the USDA Agricultural Research Services Foreign Di sease/Weed Science Research Unit believes that plant pathogens would be an easier c hoice as a weapon of mass destruction, and they would cause more damage to the food s upply and the economy (Foxell, 2001). Victims of an attack on the food supply would experien ce famine. Another long term impact of induced food scarcity would be reduced nutriti onal levels, and subs equently the potential for outbreaks of unrelated diseases due to da maged immune systems. Moreover, even a small attack on American farms would result in lowered food confidence and decline in the purchase of that food product. Even a bungled agroterrorist liv estock disease-based stratagem that affected only a handful of farm animalsa probable outcome if the perpetrators were unfamiliar with agricultural pathogens or modern farming practiceswould produce a transient clim ate of fear and panic among food buyers (Foxell, 2001, p. 109). An act of agroterrorism could be the result of many different motives. Terrorists motives vary widely. The perpetrator of an agroterrorist attack might be seeking revenge against a farmer (Kohnen, 2000, p. 11). Terro rists may not always be foreign groups

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19 preying on United States agricu lture; they could also be a disgruntled employee seeking revenge by infecting or destroying animals on the farm. Or, a terrorist may simply be driven to attack, determined to create panic by causing a food scare. The USDA considers the two most important motivations for agroterrorism to be potential for profit by damaging United States exports or food pri ces and destruction of animal or plants from anti-GMO (genetically modified organisms) activists (Kohnen, 2000). Unfortunately, agroterrorism is a multidimensional threat, involving a wide range of motives and perpetrators, and encompassing a wide range of actions from single acts of sabotage to strategic wartim e programs (Kohnen, 2000, p. 12). John Shutske, farm safety and health speci alist with th e University of Minnesota Extension, has three general recommendations for farm managers to protect their operations from terrorism. First, know who you are hiring, and consider a formal process to screen workers and check backgrounds and references. Make sure that workers are trained so that they know what to do in an emergency (Kurtz, 2002). Second, review all potential hazards in your opera tion (Kurtz, 2002). Changes to farmstead security dont have to be costly. Simply closing and locking gates where there are multiple access driveways on and off a farmstead can drama tically improve security (Kurtz, 2002, p.2). Third, plan and communicate with people in side and outside your operation, including your family, employees, suppliers, and your customers (Kurtz, 2002). Communication and preparation with employees, farm visitors and family members is essential for the prevention of a domestic agro terrorism attack by a truste d farm employee or foreign perpetrator.

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20 The production of grains, cereals, and lives tock products in the United States is open and vulnerable for a potential terrorist attack. Feedlots for livestock are large and centrally located in the Mid-west, making it eas ier for terrorists to locate and infect large numbers of animals at once. Furthermore, the grain and cereal cr ops are geographically located in the central United States in an area known as the Corn Belt. Joseph W. Foxwell describes 10 factors that contribute to our nations vulnerab ility in his paper, Current Trends in Agroterrorism (Antilivestock, Anticrop, and Antisoil Bioagricultural Terrorism) and Their Potential Impact on Food Security. The first point of vulnerability is the concentration of th e livestock industry: cattle feeding in Kansas; hogs in North Carolina, Nebraska, and Iowa; and poultry in Virginia, Georgia, Arkansas, Pennsylvania, and Maryland s Eastern shore dist rict. It is common knowledge that cattle, hogs, and poultry are pr oduced in specific geographic areas of the nation, over 70% of U.S. beef cattle are cu rrently produced within the locus of a 200mile circle (Foxell, 2001, p. 110). Also, the large Corn Belt ranges from Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, and parts of Kansas to Missouri, Nebraska, South Dakota, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wi sconsin. A terrorist could destroy a crop of corn, soybeans, or wheat by targeting a particular state. However, it would be more difficult to destroy an enti re plant crop, versus the ease of livestock transmission of disease between animals. Secondly, the United States food business is moving toward centralized ownership and larger individual farms. F oxell predicts that within the next five years the American beef industry will be organized and aggregated to the degree th at the thirty leading cattle feeding corporations will generate 50% of all beef products (Foxell, 2001). Major

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21 companies are merging together to form do minant powers, therefore making themselves larger and more accessible targets. Third, the production of livestock has tu rned to a method of dense housing. Animals are often crowded together on small lots, sharing feeding and watering troughs, and forcing more contact with other anim als. These intensive proximity husbandry practices have increased the vul nerability to the spread of infectious diseases (Foxell, 2001). Furthermore, the densely packed conf inement areas provide increased stress and strain on the cattle. The definition of these facilities is a Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO). The General Accoun ting Office estimates that there are 450,000 such CAFOs nationwide (Foxell, 2001). The larg e facilities include dairy and beef cattle feedlots, hogs and poultry houses. Unfortunatel y, one trend that has developed as a result of CAFOs is lowered resistance to infectious diseases and an over-use of antibiotic drugs to control outbreaks. This trend has ripp ling consequences, potentially impacting the consumer, who may be exposed to antibiotic s within the meat and milk products and slowly become antibiotic resistant as a result. The fourth factor of vulnerability is the in creased activity of international air travel. Americans are conveniently able to travel across the globe and then return home with the possibility of inadvertently bringing a fore ign illness or pest. American crops and animals no longer enjoy the luxury of isolation th at existed before the time of air travel. In addition, Foxell states that the fifth area of concern to ag riculture is th e reliance on pesticides and herbicides to control in sects and weeds (Foxell, 2001). Finally, the remaining five factors concentrate on the vulne rability of crop, hybrid seeds, soil, and the variety of pathogenic agents that are foreign to animals and crops.

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22 When all the above areas of concern are c onsidered collectively, a terrorist has the capability to cause damage to the United States agriculture industry with ease. However, the strategy that would cause the most damage to the United States would be a focus on mass disruption, with the purpose to destroy the nations infrastructure, rather than causing mass casualty. The nation as a whole sh ould be prepared for extensive financial losses, economic crisis, and agricultural quarantine that would be the result of a successful agroterrorism attack on the Unites States. Economic Impact A successful agroterrorism attack on the United States may not harm the public through death, but it would be a substantial tr ade and economic issue (Foxell, 2001). United States agriculture is important to the global economy as well as the national economy. The United States accounts for 15% of all global agricultural exports, and in 1998 the United States produced nearly half of the worlds soybeans, more than 40% of its corn, 20% of its co tton, 12% of its wheat, and 16% of its meat (Peters, 2003). Given the diversity of the agriculture industry, pot ential targets of agricultural bioterrorism range from field crops to farm animals; food items in transportation and storage facilities; to processing plants. Henry Parker, a resear cher at the United States Department of Agricultures Agricultural Research Servi ce (USDA-ARS) states that America is exceedingly vulnerable to agricultural bioterro rism. The reasons for this situation are numerous. To begin, there is limited a ppreciation for the economic and social importance of agriculture in the industrialized world. Abundant, affordable, and safe food supplies are largely taken for granted (Peters, 2003, p. 23). Indeed, it is hard for Americans to imagine a life without the conveni ence of safe and affordable food at every nearby grocery store and neighborhood restaurant.

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23 Therefore, even though RAND (a nonprof it research organization) officials estimate that no major United States city has more then a seven-day supply of food, the devastation of an agroterrorism attack woul d soon spread from pain in United States stomachs to the United States economy (Peter s, 2003). Most importantly would be the loss of international trade markets. Memb ers of the World Trade Organization (WTO) have the power to ban imports of plant or animal materials that may introduce exotic diseases into their te rritories (Wheelis, Casagrande, & Madden, 2002). A recent example of such economic devast ation from a disease was the foot-andmouth disease outbreak in the United Kingdo m. Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) is a highly contagious viral infection that can rapidly infect cattle According to Parker, more than 70 different strains of FMD exist, and it is the most infecti ous virus known, capable of spreading in wind-driven aerosol form mo re than 170 miles from its source (Peters, 2003). Moreover, it can be carried on clothe s, hay, transportation vehicles, and even in nasal passages. Taiwans livestock industry has been su ffering, as a result of a FMD outbreak, since 1997. In March of that year, the disease was confirme d in pigs and subsequently spread throughout the island within six week s, shutting down pork exports and ultimately causing the slaughter of more then 8 million hogs (Peters, 2003). Parker states that the origin of the disease was reportedly traced back to a pig from China, suspected of being deliberately introduced into Taiwan, costing the nation an estimated $19 billion (Peters, 2003). Furthermore, the United Kingdom su ffered from a FMD outbreak in 2001, where 4 million cattle were depopulated to contain the disease and the nation has suffered with a

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24 loss of 30 billon pounds (US $48 billion), affect ing both agriculture and tourism (Gewin, 2003). The agricultural commodities in Florida ar e vital to the economic stability of the state. Floridas 44,000 farmers grow more than 280 different crops on a commercial scale. Floridas agriculture and natural re sources industries have an economic impact on our State economy estimated at more than $62 billion annually (Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, 2004, p. 1) The reported Florid a cash receipt for cattle and calves in 2002 was $333,413,000 (Flori da Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, 2004). As of Janua ry 1, 2004 there were 950,000 beef cows in Florida, ranking the state 12th in beef cows nationally and third for States east of the Mississippi River (F lorida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, 2004) Of the 15,800 beef cow operations in Florida, 80% ha ve less than 50 head of cows, but of the top five beef producing counties, in severa l cases one or two owners/corporations may control the bulk of the cattle in that county (Dr. M. Hers om, University of Florida, Assistant Professor and Extension Beef Ca ttle Specialist, personal communication, July 8, 2005). Risk Perceptions Throughout history, humans have felt and liv ed with the feeling of risk. This ability to sense and avoid harmful conditions is necessary for the survival of all living organisms. Therefore, in recent decades risk assessment has been utilized to develop a safer and healthier environment per public demand. However, determining what the public feels is the highest risk factor can be difficult to pi npoint. Furthermore, experts may feel concern for a certain issue, wher eas the public body may not perceive the same level of urgency. For example, the Envir onmental Protection Agency (EPA) has spent a

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25 bulk of its budget in past years for hazardous waste because the public believes that the cleanup of Superfund sites is the most seri ous threat to the co untry, but indoor air pollution is considered a more extreme h ealth risk by experts (Slovic, 2001). Unfortunately, there is a difference of opini on between the experts and layperson, so who deserves the credit for being correct? Experts are crowned with the title of being objective, wise, and rational when assessing risk; they examine the real risk. On the other hand, the public is viewed as relying on perceptions of ri sk; these opinions are subjec tive, hypothetical, emotional, foolish, and irrational (Slovic, 2001). The c ontroversy between these conflicting views has resulted in the need for a better unders tanding and definition of risk. The recent development of chemical and nuclear technologi es has been joined with the potential to cause catastrophic damage to the earth and th e life forms that exist on it. The advanced technologies and potential hazards are difficu lt for the common citizen to understand; therefore, the intellect ual discipline of risk assessment was designed to aid in identifying, characterizing, and quantifyi ng risk (Slovic, 1987). What is risk? Slovic (2001) defines risk as the ch ance of injury, damage, or loss. Moreover, the probabilities and consequences of adverse events are assumed to be produced by physical and natura l processes in ways that can be objectively quantified by risk assessment (Slovic, 2001, p. 3). Social sc ience analysis has dete rmined that risk is subjective, proclaiming that humans have inve nted risk to help them understand and cope with the uncertainties in lif e (Slovic, 2001). The public has an inherently broader foundation of risk, incorporating the complex ities of dread, uncertainty, risk to future generations, catastrophic potenti al, equity, controllability, a nd past personal experiences,

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26 that factor into the risk e quation (Slovic, 2001). Slovic (198 7) summarizes this clash of risk perception between the lay pers on and the expert as follows: Perhaps the most important message from this research is that there is wisdom as well as error in public attitudes and percep tions. Lay people sometimes lack certain information about hazards. However, their basic conceptualization of risk is much richer than that of experts and reflects legitimate concerns that are typically omitted from expert risk analysis. As a result, risk communication and risk management efforts are destined to fail unless they are structured as a two-way process. Each side, expert and public, has something valid to contribute. Each side must respect the insights and intelligen ce of the other. (p. 285) Therefore, when considering the best me thod of communicating ri sk, it is important to control the definition of risk. Whoever, whether the public, experts, or government, defines the risk, will take control of the safest or best way to solve the problem at hand. Defining risk is thus an exercise in power (Slovic, 2001, p. 6). So, why in this modern world of technol ogy and advanced science are people more concerned about risk? As a w hole, the public has become h ealthier and is living longer and stronger lives with the aid of medicati on and drug enhancements. Slovic (1994), has stated several hypotheses about factors that ar e contributing to per ceptions of increased risk: 1. A greater ability to detect minute levels of toxic substances. The public can detect parts per billon of chemicals in water or air, yet we do not understand the health implications of this knowledge. 2. An increased reliance on new technologies that can have serious consequences if something goes wrong. Most of society lacks an understanding of technology and are suspicious in accepting its risks. 3. Society has experienced a num ber of catastrophic mishaps, such as the Challenger, Chernobyl, and Columbia. The intense media coverage of the failures of these supposed fail-safe systems increases doubt. 4. The extreme amount of litigation over risk problems, which highlights to the public attention to the problems, which then has experts at odds over the issue, and ultimately a loss of credibility on all sides.

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27 5. The benefits of technology are often taken for granted. When the public fails to perceive any striking benefit from an activ ity, they become intolerant of any risk, regardless of the level. 6. The public is told that they have the ab ility to control elements of risk. For example: seatbelt use, diet control, exer cise, or abstaining from smoking. This may lead to frustration over ri sks that cannot be self-cont rolled: pollution, pesticides, food contaminants or additives. 7. Psychological studies indicate that when pe ople are wealthier, and have more to lose, they become more cautious in decision making. 8. The nature of todays risks. There is a greater potential fo r catastrophe due to societal complexities, potency, and technological advances. When the above factors are considered as a whole, it is apparent the complexity of communicating risk levels to the public and how daunting a task risk communicators have when trying to allevi ate panic as a risky situa tion becomes threatening. Furthermore, hazards that are seen as catastrophic also feel uncontrollable and involuntary (Slovic, 1994). Slovic (1994) has investigated these risk relationships through a factor analysis. Factor 1 is labeled as Dread Risk and is perceived as lack of control, dread, catastrophic pot ential, and fatal consequen ces. The further toward Dread Risk that a hazard appears in the sp ace, the higher its perceived risk, the more people want to see its current risks reduce d, and the more people want to see strict regulation employed to achieve the desired reduction in risk (S lovic, 1994, p. 67). Overall, the perception of risk is a reality which impacts the lay persons way of life. Risk Communication During the September 11, 2001 attacks on the Un ited States all eyes were pinned to news stations on television to learn how to deal with the panicked fe elings resulting from the acts of terrorism. It was in these mome nts that the American public needed to hear risk communication to address specific ques tions and concerns. There was widespread

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28 uncertainty, fear, and anxiety about terrorism, bu t also about toxic dust. Initial attempts by the government failed to reassure the public about the dusts safety (Aakko, 2004, p. 25). Traditionally, when officials would address public concerns, the communication would flow one-way, more in disseminating a message than addressing specific, diverse questions. To properly benefit from active risk communication, it is a two-way process, with active participation from both sender and au dience. See Table 4 for the rules of risk communication. Table 4. The Seven Cardinal Rules of Risk Communication (Aakko, 2004) 1. Accept and involve the public as a legitimate partner 2. Plan carefully and evaluate your efforts 3. Listen to the publics specific concerns 4. Be honest, frank, and open 5. Coordinate and collaborate with other credible sources 6. Meet the needs of the media 7. Speak clearly and with compassion Successful risk communication incorporat es the rules of Table 4 and the risk perceptions of the affected audience. Risk perceptions have a direct impact on how citizens respond to risk comm unication and risk management activities (Frewer, 2004). During the 1970s the focus of communication efforts was on changing public views of risk, with an emphasis placed on communica tion of technology acceptance. However, recently the focus of risk communication shif ted toward restoring public trust in risk management, with an emphasis on more exte nsive public consultati on and participation management (Frewer, 2004). The original attempts at risk communi cation were not freely accepted, a result of the effort to change the publics view of risk to equal the views of experts of particular hazards; this process has been described by Hilgartner 1990 as the deficit model, which assumed that the public are in some way deficient in their understanding of risk,

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29 and indeed other areas of science (Frewer, 2004, p. 392). As a result of the deficit model the public lost trust in risk communication methods and lost confidence in risk management practices. However, the dist rust was noted by risk communicators and currently a new method of risk management is in effect. Ultimately, there has been a cultural shift away from t op-down communication practices to more consultative and inclusive decision making-pro cesses; risk communication is re-orienting towards a citizen focus (Frewer, 2004). Another factor in successful risk communi cation is trust. A trusting relationship between the public and the expert is necessary in developing successful and effective risk management practices. Furthermore, trust is particularly important when people feel little personal control over exposure to poten tial hazards. Institutions and organizations need to agree on methods to maintain public confidence in risk management practices. Jenson and Sandoe 2002 have noted a continued d ecline in public food safety confidence despite the new food safety institutions and th e European Food Safety Authority (Frewer, 2004). They argue that this is because communications about food safety issues that are based on scientific risk assessments do not reassure the public (Frewer, 2004, p. 393). Lay people interpret scientific information and facts differently depending on personal perceptions. To better facil itate risk analysis and comm unication, there needs to be a greater understanding of indivi dual differences in percep tions and information needs between the public and the risk communicator (Frewer, 2004). Programs that communicate agroterrorism ri sk have been developed in several states including Florida and Minnesota. Th e Florida State Agricultural Response Team (SART) program held the first annual trai ning events in Kissimmee, Belle Glade and

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30 Tallahassee, Florida in spring 2005 in order publicize SARTs missions and goals (Wang et al., 2005). Likewise, the University of Minnesota Extension Service has organized four regional workshops to educate about th e intentional and unint entional threats that can affect agriculture (Unive rsity of Minnesota Extension Service, 2005). John Shutske, coordinator for the event, feels that The tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001 have made agricultural producers more aware of the need to protect their operations and the health of the public. Terroristic introduc tion of disease, contaminatio n or other damaging agents has become a concern (Kurtz, 2002, p. 1). Another state that has acknowledged the need to communicate and educate the public is Iowa. Iowa State University has teamed up with the Center for Food Security and Pub lic Health to print CDs and hold workshops titled, Bioterrorism Awareness Education and Agroterrorism Awareness Education (Iowa State University, 2004). Chapter Summary This chapter attempted to review the current published literature concerning biological agents, terrorism, agroterrorism, risk perceptions, and risk communication. The motivation for agroterrorism research is a direct result from the September 11th terrorist attacks on the United States, and th e potential for an attack on Americas food supply. The theoretical framework that suppor ts this study is Taylors 1983 cognitive adaptation theory that attempts to explain th e behavioral changes as a coping response to a catastrophic event. In addi tion, Slovic (2001) defines risk as the chance of injury, damage, or loss. Unfortunately, risk is subjective. To achieve successful risk communication, the publics percep tion of risk should be defi ned in order to design the most applicable educational program to increase terrorism preparedness and safety practices.

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31 CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY The purpose of this study was to identify beef producers curr ent knowledge levels of agroterrorism and simultaneously measure per ceived levels of agroterrorism risk to the operation. This research study utilized a desc riptive survey. The targeted research population was Florida beef cat tle producers. The survey sampled Florida beef cattle producers that attended the UF-IFAS Beef Cattle Short Course, thus enabling conclusions to be drawn on the targ eted research population. The objectives of this study were to 1. Identify the current levels of knowledge about agroterrorism held by Florida beef producers, 2. Identify the level of preparedness against agroterrorism attack(s), 3. Determine the risk perceptions of the b eef cattle producer to bioterrorism and agroterrorism, and 4. With this data, determine producers prefer ences for the delivery of agroterrorism education materials. The questionnaire consisted of 55 res earch-developed questions, ranging from What is the estimated size of your operation? to If you feel your opera tion is at risk to terrorist activity, which asp ects do you think are at greate st risk? The descriptive questionnaire was reviewed by a panel of experts, which included the researchers advisory committee and a topic specialist. It was pilot tested and revised before being administrated to the sample population. The su rvey instrument is included in Appendix A.

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32 Research Design The research design for this study utilized a descriptive questionnaire administered to a population of Florida beef producers. Th is convenience-sample of participants was selected based on the study objectives and atte ndance at the University of Florida Beef Cattle Short Course (BCSC). The principle investigator of this study distributed the questionnaire booklets with the assistance of Elizabeth Wang. At the beginning of the BCSC, per instructions from the BCSC Conf erence Director, during the check-in time of the conference, the researcher stood at the front desk and appro ached participants, discussed the survey purpose and requested th eir participation. Permission to conduct this study was granted from the University of Florida Institutional Review Board (IRB). The UF IRB office ensured that the rights and welfare of the human subjects involved in this study were protected. IRB approved the survey instrument and informed consent script on March 28, 2005 (see Appendices B and C). Singly approaching participants proved to be difficult, time consuming, and too demanding for one person to reach out to ever y beef producer in atte ndance at the BCSC. Therefore, the principle investigator enlisted the assistance of Mrs. Wang to assist with the distribution of questionnaires to participants in the audito rium before the first speaker on May 6, 2005. Furthermore, the researcher made an announcement at the podium about the purpose of the survey and requested that it be completed and returned before the end of the day. The goal of the researcher administering th e survey in person was to increase the response rate by having greater influence and contact with the populat ion being studied.

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33 Population In order to meet the objec tives of the study, th e defined population was Florida beef cattle producers. Each participant needed to have produced beef cattl e or be currently in production. The targeted population was survey ed with a sample from participants attending the 54th Annual Beef Cattle Short Course ( BCSC). In conversation with Dr. Tim Marshall (personal communication, July 11, 2005), University of Florida Professor of Beef Cattle Management and Program Committee member for the 2005 BCSC, he felt that the sample population of BCSC particip ants for this study was a representative sample of Florida beef cattle producers. Dr Marshall stated that most beef cattle producers that attend the BCSC work large pr oduction operations (7 -8 of the largest ranches in Florida attend) or smaller herds (around 1,000 cows). Florida is unique in that the state has more 500 herd cows than any other state, yet Florida is also home to Desert Ranch which boasts 40,000 brood cows (Dr. Tim Marshall, personal communication, July 11, 2005). The BCSC was hosted and coordinated by the University of Florida IFAS Cooperative Extension Service. The topic areas highlighted at the 54th Annual BCSC included, Maintaining Quality Produ ction in a Dynamic Market Place; Management Factors Affecting Quality in the Herd; Prac tical Ranch Issues Facing Cattlemen Today; and Grass Fertilizer, and Management: Grazin g Issues Affecting the Florida Cow Herd The BCSC early registration fee was $85.00 a nd the regular registration fee was $110.00. The registration fee included refreshment break s, an exhibitors reception, Thursdays luncheon, one Cattlemens Steak-out ticket, and a proceedings. (University of Florida IFAS Extension, 2005)

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34 Data Collection The survey instrument was pilot test ed March 15, 2005 at an Alachua County Cattlemens Association Meeting in Newberry, Flor ida. As a result of the pilot test, the questionnaire was revised and finalized for us e. Formatting changes included re-ordering the questions within the instrument, the additi on of the answer choice Not Applicable for questions 20-27, an increase of demographi c questions and the in clusion of question number 55 concerning preferred workshop delivery method. In the pilot study, the questionnaire was distributed and administ ered to a sample (N=51) with verbal instructions for the instrument and reason fo r the study. The response rate for the pilot was 84% (N=43). Data for this study was collected at the Un iversity of Florida IFAS Extension Beef Cattle Short Course, May 4-6, 2005. The resear cher began to distribute questionnaires on May 4 and continued to collect data until the conclusion of the conference on May 6. Of the 137 distributed questionnaires, 91 useable re sponses were returned to the researcher, for a response rate of 66.4%. Instrumentation The survey was developed with the aid of researchers and was adapted from a previously administered que stionnaire by the Extension Disaster Education Network Homeland Security Survey of Agriculture and Horticulture Producers (EDEN, 2003). Although the EDEN survey was used as a m odel, much of this instrument was not applicable for this study populat ion. Therefore, the questionn aire used for this study was created from an intensive liter ature review and review from a panel of experts. The survey consisted of 55 items and was reviewed by a panel of experts, which included the advisory committee and a topic specialist, for fa ce and construct validity. The first page

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35 of the instrument described the purpose of the study and defined the terms agroterrorism and bioterrorism. This was included to incr ease understanding of th e study, with the aim of increasing the response rate. Part I of the survey was designed to measure perceptions about agroterrorism. It consisted of four Likert-type scale ques tions (see Appendix A), answers ranging from 5-Strongly agree; 4Agree; 3-Neither Agree nor Disagree; 2Disagree; and 1-Strongly Disagr ee. This section was desi gned to determine the risk perceptions of beef producers related to the ch ance of an agroterrorism attack in 1) the United States, 2) Florida, and 3) their operation. Their overall perception toward agroterrorism preparation was also considered. The next section, Part II, was titled R ate the Level of Perceived Threat. Questions 5-16 were again modeled after Like rt-type scales, 5-Cons iderable threat; 4Much threat; 3-Some threat; 2-Little threat; a nd 1-None. Participants were instructed to circle the number that best reflected the level of perceived threat they felt to their operation from risk to terrori st activity. See Table 5 for examples of questions. Table 5. Questions Rating the Level of Perceived Threat Operation Risk Scale Water Contamination Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None Feed Contamination Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None Animal Death Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None Animal Disease Outbreak Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None Chemical Contamination Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None Loss of Income Due to Market Losses Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None Tampering with Facilities Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None Part III of the instrument, titled G aining Knowledge about Agroterrorism, included three questions. One question as ked respondents about their attendance at agroterrorism workshops, and th e answer options were: Yes, at least once; More than once; and No. The next question aimed to determine which three persons beef producers

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36 would contact for advice during a breech of security on their farm. Respondents were asked to select their top three contacts from a list of ten choices: Veterinarian, Extension Agent, Florida Dept. of Agriculture, A nother livestock producer, Law enforcement, USDA, Producer Association, State or count y Emergency Management, Dont know, or Other (please specify). The final question in Part III inquired about biosecurity investments (time, money, or effort) made to the operation in reference to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Respondents had five answer options: Yes, before September 11, 2001; Yes, before and after September 11, 2001; Yes, after September 11, 2001; No; and Dont know. Part IV of the instrument aimed to measure agroterrorism preparedness of the beef producer. Questions 20-27 were designed us ing a Likert-type scale to measure both feelings of importance toward livestock protec tion and how this relate s to the degree of practice on the farm. Respondents were inst ructed to read each question and then respond twice, with two different scales. Th e first scale, evaluating the importance of each operation safeguard, was: 4-Major impor tance; 3-Moderate importance; 2-Minor importance; and 1-No importance. Then th e same questions (20-27) had an additional scale, evaluating the degree to which beef producers practi ce each safety measure, and consisted of: 4-Always practice; 3-Modera te practice; 2-Rarely practice; 1-Never practice. The scale on the right also had the option for respondents to circle Not Applicable. Not Applicable as an answer choice was provided for beef producers who did not have a particular scenario apply to their operation. For example, if a beef producer does not hire employees, but instead is family owned and operated, then that

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37 respondent would circle NA for question 25 regarding conducting a background check on potential hires. The next three questions related to the access and availability of agroterrorism educational materials. Question 28 inquired about the participants accessibility to educational materials that can specifically answer agricultural biosecurity questions. Respondents answered either yes, no or don t know. However, this question had an optional second part. If res pondents answered yes, meaning that they did have access to educational materials, they were asked to s upply the name of the material source in the blank space below the question. The write-in portion of this ques tion, although optional, was encouraged in order to determine current av ailable materials. Next, participants were questioned on the likeliness of contacting a particular source to learn more about agroterrorism or livestock specific biosecurity threats. This ques tion was designed using a Likert-type scale, 5-Very likely; 4-Fairly likely; 3-Likely; 2-Unlik ely; 1-Very unlikely. The contact question choices varied from Veterinarian, Extension agent, Law Enforcement, to Dont know who I would contact. The next section was designed to more specifically determine where beef producers seek out published information about biosecur ity. Questions 39-45 also utilized the Likert-type scale mentioned above, 5-Very likel y; 4-Fairly likely; 3-Likely; 2-Unlikely; 1-Very unlikely. The final question before th e demographics section referred to the Footand -Mouth Outbreak in England and the D ecember 2003 discovery of a BSE cow in the U.S. This question (46) was included to m easure the influence of these events on beef producers decisions towards improving securi ty on their operation. The scale for this

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38 question was: 5-Strongly influenced; 4-Influenc ed; 3-Neither; 2-Mini mal influence; 1-No influence. The final portion of the instrument wa s Part V, which included demographic questions. A dichotomous choice question of gender was included to determine the percentage of male to female respondents (81.3% male, 98.9% total). Additional demographic questions included inquiries about length of time in th e livestock business, number of cattle on the production facilit y, size of the operation, and average annual gross receipts value, all of which offered an swers with range answers, which respondents were asked to reply with the one choi ce that best matched their situation. Also, respondents were to ci rcle the type of livestock production they operate, beef or dairy, or both. Respondents we re also asked if their role (s) in the livestock production operation were 1) a landlord only; 2) an ope rator on land they owned; 3) an operator on rented land; 4) and/or other (where they would specify). With this part icular question, respondents were encouraged to circle all scen arios that applied to them. In order to determine the level of technol ogy and the future potential to apply biosecurity measures, the instrument inquired about the presence of a record keeping system on the livestock operation. Lastly, in accordance with the f ourth study objective, th e final question aimed to determine the preferred delivery method of agroterrorism educational materials if the Extension Service were to provide the serv ice. Livestock producers were given the following answer choices, and instructed to select their top choi ce: Weekend Training Workshop; Read printed materials at your own pace; Take classes through the World Wide Web; and One-on-One contact with an Extension Agent.

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39 Variables The main independent variable in this study was risk per ception. This is a subjective feeling from each farm operator, which reflects on circumstances, financial security, perceptions about the September 11th terrorist attack, and other miscellaneous variables. The dependent variable was the le vel of preparedness against bioagents. The level of preparedness was measured from respons es to the survey. To measure this, level of preparedness was related to accessible educa tional materials, contact with an extension agents, attendance at a safety workshop, the practice of employee education training, and the identification of potential agroterrorism ta rgets. The level and degree of protection against bioagents entering the farm operation was directly related to attitude toward bioterrorism on the farm. The September 11th attacks on America had a profound impact on risk perceptions and emoti onal stress; American citizens, even those not directly affected by the attack, suffered from psychol ogical and emotional problems that included an increased sense of vulne rability and personal risk (Powell & Self, 2004, p. 57). Data Analysis The data from the survey was statistically analyzed using SPSS 11.5 for Windows. The objectives of the study called for computation of descriptive statistics, means, frequencies, and percentages. In orde r to analyze the data, the Likert-type scales were treated as ordinal data. To determine the reliability of the instrument, post hoc analysis was reported with Cronbachs Alpha coefficients ranging from 0.45 to 0.92. From the collected survey information sugges tions were provided and solutions presented to improve upon current methods of relaying agroterrorism information. Kohnen (2000) states, a livestock producer can reduce the epidemiological risk by increasing biosecurity measures at his f acilities (p. 22). This supports the notion that protection is

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40 the number one defense when preventing the spread of a disease that could cause a decrease in consumer confidence and econom ic repercussions for Florida livestock producers. Furthermore, a Biosecurity Traini ng Program could enta il a wide variety of activities such as educational mailings, presen tations at local Farm Bureau meetings, and workshops at state and local levels (Kohnen, 2000, p. 23). Chapter Summary This chapter described the methods used to address and answer the objectives of this study. The methodology determined for th is research design t ook into account the purpose and objectives, and this chapter di scussed the determined population, sample, instrumentation, data collection, variables and data analysis. The design of this study was identified as correlational re search utilizing a descriptive survey (Irani, 2004). The survey instrument was reviewed by a panel of experts, which included the advisory comm ittee and a topic specialist, and was pilot tested for face and construct validity. Furt hermore, the direct administration of the instrument was chosen to increase the respons e rate. The independent variable in this study was agroterrorism risk perceptions. This was defined as the range of feeling, high risk to minimal risk, applied to different aspects of the livestock operation. The dependent variable was the level of prepare dness against bioagents and an agroterrorism attack.

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CHAPTER 4 RESULTS The purpose of this study was to identify beef producers curr ent knowledge levels of agroterrorism and simultaneously measure per ceived levels of agroterrorism risk to the operation. Moreover, the focus of the resear ch addressed the issu es of bioterrorism, bioagents, livestock diseases, and ultimate ly, the preferred res ources of educational material for Florida beef producers. The an alyzed data from the survey results will determine risk perceptions, current agroterr orism safety operation practices, preferred persons/organizations as educational resource s, and the preferred method of delivery for agroterrorism training materials. The terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 and the recent discovery of a BSE cow in the state of Washington have altered the attitudes and risk perceptions in the United States. Do Americans believe in the safety of the food they consume? Should beef producers be held accountable for each anim al produced on his/her operation? Where do beef cattle operators go for more information about agroterrorism? How at risk do beef cattle producers feel our country, th e state of Florida, and their farm is in the present state of the world? In order to answer these questions a survey was developed modeling a similar EDEN web survey (EDEN, 2003). The 55 question survey instrument was research developed and reviewed by a panel of experts. The instrument was divided into sections by topic and consisted of the following (see Appendix A): Part I-Perceptions about Agroterrorism

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42 Part II-Rate the Level of Perceived Threat Part III-Gaining Knowledge about Agroterrorism Part IV-Agroterrorism Preparedness Part V-Demographics The results for the study are reported in seque nce with the study obj ectives stated in Chapter One: Identify the current levels of knowledge a bout agroterrorism held by Florida’s beef cattle producers, Identify the level of preparedness against agroterrorism attack(s), Determine the risk perceptions of the beef producer to bioterrorism and agroterrorism, and With this data, determine the produce r’s preferences for the delivery of agroterrorism educational materials. The survey data collection techniques out lined in Chapter 3 was followed. Of the 137 surveys distributed at the Beef Cattle Short Course, 91 useable responses were returned to the researcher. Therefore, a response rate of 66.4% (N =91) was achieved. The data was analyzed using SPSS 11.5 for Windows™. In cases where a respondent failed to answer a question or part of a list of questions, the blank variable was coded as missing and left blank in the SPSS data system. Objective One Identify the current levels of knowledg e about agroterrorism held by Florida’s beef cattle producers. In order to determine results for objectiv e one, questions concerning agroterrorism knowledge were included in the survey. Part III, Gaining Knowledge about Agroterrorism, asked particip ants a range of questions, from agroterrorism workshop attendance, desired person of c ontact if ever concerned about biosecurity, to biosecurity

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43 investments before and/ or after September 11th. The post-hoc reliability Cronbach’s alpha value for objective one was 0.67. Res pondents were asked, “Have you attended a workshop or general information session a bout biosecurity/agroterrorism?” (Question number 17, see Appendix A). Table 6 lists the frequency results. This question had a 100% (N=91) response rate, a nd the calculated mean was 0.37, with a standard deviation of 0.57. Table 6. Attendance at a workshop/information session In order to determine the preferred source of contact during a br eech of security or during a suspected agroterrorism attack, beef producers were asked to choose their top three persons/organizations they would most lik ely contact. The descriptive statistics are listed in Table 7. Table 7. Suspected agro terrorism on your operation, whom would you contact ƒ % Law Enforcement 58 63.8 Florida Department of Agriculture 49 53.9 St. or County Emer. Mgt 28 30.8 Veterinarian 31 34.1 Extension Agent 24 26.4 USDA 14 15.4 Producer Association 13 14.3 Another livestock producer 11 12.1 Other 3 3.3 Missing values 42 46.2 Total 231 253.8 Attendance ƒ % No 61 67.0 Yes, at least once 26 28.6 More than once 4 4.4 Total 91 100

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44 The final question, in Part I II of the instrument, was writte n to better understand the beef producers’ application of current agroterrorism knowledge. Question 19 asked, “Have you made considerable investments (time, money or effort) to make your operation more biosecure?” Respondents were to select one response, from the following choices: 1) Yes, before September 11, 2001; 2) Yes, before and after September 11, 2001; 3) Yes, after September 11, 2001; 4) No ; and 5) Don’t Know. For the purpose of consistency, Don’t Know and blank responses were coded as missing values. See Table 8 for the frequency data. Table 8. Have you made considerable investments (time, money, or effort) ƒ % No 70 76.9 Yes, before and after Sept. 11, 2001 6 6.6 Yes, after Sept. 11, 2001 9 9.9 Total Responses 85 93.4 Missing values 6 6.6 Total 91 100 Objective Two Identify the level of preparedne ss against agroterrorism attack(s). Again, the purpose of this study was to determine current agroterrorism knowledge, perceptions, and how this relates to safety practices and le vels of preparedness. In order to determine the degree to which prepare dness is practiced on beef cattle production operations, Part IV of the su rvey instrument used a twosided Likert-type scale design (see Appendix A). The post-hoc reliability Cr onbach’s alpha value for objective two was 0.81. For questions 20-27, respondents were requ ested to answer two scales. The Likerttype scale on the left side of each ques tion was designed to determine respondents’ opinion of the importance of each safeguard to better protect a livestock operation. The scale, a range from 1-4, rated the importan ce of the farm safety practice: 1=No

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45 Importance; 2=Minor Importanc e; 3=Moderate Importance; 4=Major Importance. Table 9 lists the data for the “Importance of the Safeguard” scale. On the right side of each question another Likert-type scale (scale of 1-4 and Not Applicable), was intended to measure the degr ee to which the beef producer practiced the indicated safeguard. The values for the “D egree to which you Practice” scale: 1=Never practice; 2=Rarely practice; 3=Moderate practice; 4=Always pr actice; and if the safeguard scenario did not apply to the res pondents’ beef cattle operation, they were encouraged to circle Not Applicable. Howe ver, when the data was analyzed in SPSS, the blank and Not Applicable respondents were coded as mi ssing values. Not Applicable is in essence a blank response, since it does not apply to the farm operations and if Not Applicable had been missing as an answer option, respondents would have left the scale blank for lack of application. Table 10 lists the data for the “Degree to which you Practice” scale. In an effort to further understand th e mean scores for the above responses, frequency statistics were computed for both Likert-type scales. See Table 11 for the frequency data for the importance of the specific operation safeguards. Likewise, frequency statistics were analyzed for the degree to which beef producers practice each farm safeguard, see Table 12 for this data. Table 9. Reported Means: Im portance of the Safeguard Farm Safeguard Mean Std. Dev. N Isolating a new animal from the herd 3.43 0.75 84 Participate in training programs, to enable employees to recognize and report a disease outbreak 3.15 0.89 80 Background check on potential hires 2.94 1.09 78

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46 Table 9. Continued Regular employee meetings to determine their satisfaction levels 2.92 0.96 79 Limiting Visitors 2.85 0.93 87 Required waiting period for visitors 2.49 0.92 83 Require employees to wear coveralls 1.74 0.74 81 Require people entering to shower in and out 1.47 0.70 77 Table 10. Reported Means: De gree to which you Practice Farm Safeguard Mean Std. Dev. N Isolating a new animal from the herd 3.29 0.86 77 Limiting Visitors 2.76 0.99 82 Background check on potential hires 2.56 1.14 64 Regular employee meetings to determine their satisfaction levels 2.54 1.04 68 Participate in training programs, to enable employees to recognize and report a disease outbreak 2.38 0.98 68 Required waiting period for visitors 1.87 0.86 77 Require employees to wear coveralls 1.38 0.77 69 Require people entering to shower in and out 1.09 0.34 67 Objective Three Determine the risk perceptions of th e beef producer to bioterrorism and agroterrorism. Part I The purpose of objective three was to determin e the level of risk a beef producer in Florida felt to the possibility of a bioterrorism or agroterrorism attack. The state of Florida is at heightened risk due to the accessi bility of sea ports a nd multiple international airports, which increases the probability of successful introduction of bioagents (Christy et al., 2004). Therefore, Pa rts I and II (questions numb ered 1-16), and question number 46 specifically addressed risk perceptions in rela tion to agroterrorism. Part I (questions

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47Table 11. Frequency data: Importance of the Safeguard No Importance Minor Importance Moderate Importance Major Importance Total Farm Safeguard ƒ % ƒ % ƒ % ƒ % ƒ % Isolating a new animal from the herd 2 2.2 7 7.7 28 30.8 47 51.6 84 92.3 Participate in training programs, to enable employees to recognize and report a disease outbreak 6 6.6 8 8.8 34 37.4 32 35.2 80 87.9 Background check on potential hires 12 13.2 12 13.2 23 25.3 31 34.1 78 85.7 Regular employee meetings to determine their satisfaction levels 9 9.9 12 13.2 34 37.4 24 26.4 79 86.8 Limiting visitors 6 6.6 27 29.7 28 30.8 26 28.6 87 95.6 Required waiting period for visitors 12 13.2 30 33.0 29 31.9 12 13.2 83 91.2 Require employees to wear coveralls and shoe covers 33 36.3 38 41.8 8 8.8 2 2.2 81 89.0 Require people entering to shower in and out 49 53.8 21 23.1 6 6.6 1 1.1 77 84.6

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48Table 12. Frequency data: Degree to which you Practice Never Practice Rarely Practice Moderate Practice Always Practice Total Farm Safeguard ƒ % ƒ % ƒ % ƒ % ƒ % Isolating a new animal from the herd 3 3.3 11 12.1 24 26.4 39 42.9 77 84.6 Limiting Visitors 9 9.9 25 27.5 25 27.5 23 25.3 82 90.1 Background check on potential hires 16 17.6 13 14.3 18 19.8 17 18.7 64 70.3 Regular employee meetings to determine their satisfaction levels 15 16.5 14 15.4 26 28.6 13 14.3 68 74.7 Participate in training programs, to enable employees to recognize and report a disease outbreak 14 15.4 24 26.4 20 22.0 10 11.0 68 74.7 Required waiting period for visitors 30 33.0 31 34.1 12 13.2 4 4.4 77 84.6 Require employees to wear coveralls and shoe covers 52 57.1 11 12.1 3 3.3 3 3.3 69 75.8 Require people entering to shower in and out 62 68.1 4 4.4 1 1.1 67 73.6

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49 numbered 1-4), asked respondents to circle th e number of a Likert-type scale which best reflects their feelings to four separate st atements. The corresponding scale values were: 1=Strongly disagree; 2=Disagree ; 3=Neither agree nor disagr ee; 4=Agree; 5= Strongly agree. Blank responses were coded as mi ssing values and were not included in the calculation of the mean value. The post-hoc reliability Cron bach’s alpha for Part I was 0.45. Question number one, stated “I think that an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in the U.S.” This question had a 100% response rate (N =91), and reported a mean of 4.33, and a standard deviation of 0.65. Therefore, the study population felt that an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in the U.S. Question number two, “I think that an act of agroterrorism could ha ppen somewhere in Florida”, had a mean of 4.16 and standard deviation of 0.76, with a 100% (N=91) response rate. Although not as high a mean as question number one, the sa mple population conceded that an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in Florid a. Next, question number three, “I think that an act of agroterrorism could happen on my operation”, had a reported mean of 3.08, and a standard deviation of 1.15, with a 98.8% (N=90) response rate. Finally, question number four, “I feel prepared for an agroterr orism attack or some ot her biosecurity threat to my operation”, had a reported mean of 2.69, and a standard deviation of 0.96, with a 98.8% (N=90) response rate. Frequency valu es for each question (1 -4) are listed below in Tables 13-16. Table 13. I think an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in the U.S. Scale Value ƒ % Strongly disagree 1 1.1 Disagree 0 0.0 Neither agree nor disagree 3 3.3

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50 Table 13. Continued Scale Value ƒ % Agree 51 56.0 Strongly agree 36 39.6 Total 91 100.0 Table 14. I think an act of agroterroris m could happen somewhere in Florida Scale Value ƒ % Strongly disagree 1 1.1 Disagree 2 2.2 Neither agree nor disagree 8 8.8 Agree 50 54.9 Strongly agree 30 33.0 Total 91 100.0 Table 15. I think an act of agroterr orism could happen on my operation Scale Value ƒ % Strongly disagree 13 14.3 Disagree 9 9.9 Neither agree nor disagree 34 37.4 Agree 26 28.6 Strongly agree 8 8.8 Total 90 98.9 Table 16. I feel prepared for an agroterrorism a ttack or biosecurity threat to my operation Scale Value ƒ % Strongly disagree 8 8.8 Disagree 33 36.6 Neither agree nor disagree 30 33.0 Agree 17 18.7 Strongly agree 2 2.2 Total 90 98.9 Part II The second part of the survey instrument (questions numbered 5-16) was designed to determine the beef producer s’ risk perceptions for specifi c targeted areas of the beef cattle operation. For Part II, respondents were requested to “Rate th e Level of Perceived

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51 Threat” for each aspect of your operation by circling the number on a Likert-type scale which best reflected the level they felt their op eration is at risk to terrorist activity. The scale values were coded 1-5 for the degree of perceived threat: 1=None (no threat felt); 2=Little threat; 3=Some threat; 4=Much threat; 5=Considerable threat. Specific areas of concern included: water contamin ation; feed contamination; an imal death; animal disease outbreak; fertilizer th eft/misuse; employee revenge; ch emical contamination; zoonotic illness (disease transmitted from animal to human); loss of income due to market losses; tampering with facilities; tampering with fences/gates; other, please specify. The calculated Cronbach’s alpha valu e for Part II was 0.92. The desc riptive statis tics for each area of concern are shown in Table 17. The final instrument question that was desi gned to provide data for objective three was question number 46, “To what extent have the Foot and Mouth outbreak in England and the December 2003 discovery of a Bovi ne Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) case in the United States influenced any deci sions towards improving the security on your operation?” This question was written to in clude past events that caused economic damage to both the United Kingdom and the Unit ed States. By read ing this question and choosing from the Likert-type scale: 1=No Influence; 2=Mi nimal Influence; 3=Neither; 4=Influenced; 5=Strongly Influenced; respondent s were required to consider past events of agriculture affected by bioagents, and c onsider how these situations influence their beef cattle operation. In Table 18 it is re ported that respondents had a difference of opinion.

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52Table 17. Part II Descriptive Statistics Mean Std. Dev. None Little Some Much ConsiderableTotal Perceived threat for each aspect of the beef cattle operation ƒ % ƒ % ƒ % ƒ % ƒ % ƒ % Loss of income due to market losses 3.39 1.22 6 6.6 15 16.5 27 29.7 19 20.9 21 23.1 88 96.7 Animal disease outbreak 3.00 1.10 8 8.8 24 26.4 24 26.4 28 30.8 6 6.6 90 98.9 Tampering with fences/gates 2.91 1.14 11 12.1 22 24.2 28 30.8 22 24.2 7 7.7 90 98.9 Animal death 2.79 1.00 8 8.8 25 27.5 36 39.6 13 14.3 5 5.5 87 95.6 Water contamination 2.58 1.08 12 13.2 36 39.6 27 29.7 8 8.8 7 7.7 90 98.9 Feed contamination 2.46 1.00 14 15.4 36 39.6 29 31.9 7 7.7 4 4.4 90 98.9 Tampering with facilities 2.41 1.03 16 17.6 38 41.8 22 24.2 11 12.1 3 3.3 90 98.9 Chemical contamination 2.38 1.11 19 20.9 35 38.5 22 24.2 6 6.6 6 6.6 88 96.7 Zoonotic illness 2.30 1.03 19 20.9 42 46.2 14 15.4 13 14.3 2 2.2 90 98.9 Fertilizer theft/misuse 2.12 0.92 22 24.2 43 47.3 17 18.7 5 5.5 2 2.2 89 97.8 Employee revenge 1.88 1.07 41 45.1 31 34.1 10.0 11.0 4 4.4 4 4.4 90 98.9 *Other, please specify 1.80 1.30 3 3.3 1 1.1 1 1.1 5 5.5 *Other responses are listed in Appendix D.

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53 Table 18. Foot-and-Mouth/BSE influen ced operation security decisions. Mean 3.38 Median 4.00 Std. Deviation 1.31 N 88 Scale ƒ % No Influence 12 13.2 Minimal Influence 11 12.1 Neither 14 15.4 Influenced 34 37.4 Strongly Influenced 17 18.7 Total 88 96.7 As seen in Table 18, the majority of res pondents felt that the past events of Footand-Mouth in the United Kingdom and the BSE cas e in the United States had influence in decisions towards improving security on th eir operation. 18.7 % of the sample population felt that the animal disease outbr eaks strongly influe nced their safety decisions. Objective Four With this data, determine the pro ducer’s preferences for the delivery of agroterrorism educational materials. The purpose of objective four was to determine where and how beef cattle producers acquire educationa l materials or information about agroterrorism and bioagents, and to use the information from the previous three objectives to provide adequate and accessible educational informa tion. To satisfy this objective, question number 28 asked, “Do you have access to educ ational material that can answer your agricultural biosecurity questi ons?” This question provided an swers of Yes; No; or Don’t Know. If the survey respondent answered yes, they were encouraged to write in the said material source in the blank space by the que stion. For the purpose of reporting a valid

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54 mean, don’t know responses were coded as missing values. A response rate of 69.2% (N=63) was reported, and 30.8% of the populat ion reported no, while 38.5% reported a yes response to question number 28. There were a total of 28 (30.8%) missing values, which were either don’t know or blank responses. The next grouping of questions (numbers 29-38), asked: “If you wanted to know more about agroterrorism or liv estock specific biosecu rity threats, how likely would it be for you to contact the following?” The cont act list included: Veterinarian, Extension Agent, Florida Dept. of Agriculture, A nother livestock producer, Law enforcement, USDA, Producer association, State or C ounty Emergency Management, Don’t Know who I would contact, and Other-please specify. In order to determine the probability of the surveyed beef producers to contact each of the above listed sources, a Likert-type scale was created to represent the likeline ss of contact: 1=Very unlikely; 2=Unlikely; 3=Likely; 4=Fairly likely; 5=Very likely. The mean, standard deviation, and N are reported in Table 19 for questions 29-38. Table 19. Likeliness of contacting for biosecurity threat questions. Contact source Mean Std. Dev. N Florida Department of Agriculture 4.11 0.90 87 Extension Agent 3.99 1.04 86 Veterinarian 3.80 1.10 85 Producer Association 3.56 1.20 84 Law Enforcement 3.52 1.29 86 Another Livestock Producer 3.30 1.20 82 St. or county Emergency. Mgt. 3.07 1.32 84 Don’t know who I would contact 1.92 1.19 50 Other, please specify* 5.00 1 *See Appendix D for the specified comments. From the above listed mean values, it can be determined that the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Se rvices would be the most likely contacted

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55 source during an agroterrorism attack or agro terrorism scare. Furthermore, Extension agents, veterinarians, and law enforcement of ficials should also be prepared to receive inquires about biosecurity threat s or during a breech of securi ty on a beef cattle operation. In relation to the above set of questions numbers 39-45 of the survey instrument asked respondents, “If you wanted to know more about agroterro rism or livestock specific biosecurity threats, where would you look for published information?” This set of questions used the same Likert-type scal e listed above: 1=Very unlikely; 2=Unlikely; 3=Likely; 4=Fairly likely; 5=Very likely. See Table 20 for a report of the descriptive statistics. Table 20. Where would you look fo r published information? Information source Mean Std. Dev. N University of Florida 4.25 0.83 88 Extension Office 4.05 0.93 86 World Wide Web 3.93 1.14 87 Farm Magazine 3.60 1.09 88 Newspaper 2.44 1.11 85 Library Publications 2.29 0.96 83 Other, please specify* 5.00 0.00 3 *See Appendix D for the specified comments. Based on the reported means in Table 20, it can be stated that the top source of published information is the University of Florida. The second and third preferred published information sources are the Universi ty of Florida IFAS Extension Office and the World Wide Web, respectively. The leas t desired source for livestock biosecurity threat information or agroterrorism re lated questions is library publications. Lastly, question number 55 asked, “If the Ex tension Office were to concentrate on educating livestock producers about agro terrorism which delivery method would you prefer?” This question establ ished the top choice of educatio nal material delivery if an agroterrorism educational pr ogram was created by UF-IFAS Extension. The answer

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56 choices were: Weekend training workshop; R ead printed materials at your own pace; Take classes through the Worl d Wide Web; or One-on-One contact with an Extension agent. Respondents were instructed to select the top choice from the listed options, and those who checked all the delivery methods, mo re than one, or did not select any were coded as missing values. The frequency values are reported in Ta ble 21. The calculated Cronbach’s reliability alpha value for objectiv e four was 0.57. Responses for the “Other, please specify” were omitted due to the hi gh number of blankly coded answers which originally caused an error in calculation of the alpha value. Table 21. Preferred agrote rrorism educational materials delivery method Delivery Method ƒ % Weekend training workshop 38 41.8 Read printed materials at own pace 22 24.2 Take classes through the World Wide Web 8 8.8 One-on-One contact with an Extension Agent 10 11.0 Missing values 13 14.3 Total 91 100.0 Demographics Part V of the instrument asked basic demographic questions about the beef producer and the operation. Of the sample population (N=91), 17.6% were female and 81.3% were male, and there was one missing value (1.1%). When asked “How many years have you been in the livestock pr oduction business”, 2.2% (N=2) had been in production 1 day to 12months, 1.1% (N=1) for 13 months to 2 years, 2.2% (N=2) for 25 months to 3 years, 6.6% (N=6) for 37 months to 4 years, 3.3% (N=3) for 49 months to 5 years, and an overwhelming majority 83.5% (N=76) had been in production for more than 5 years. For this question (numbe r 48, see Appendix A) there was one (1.1%) missing value. In order to determine the approximate size of production facilities the sample population of beef producers manage question number 52 asked, “What is the

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57 size of your operation?” Answ er choices included: less than 1 acre – 99 acres; 100249 acres; 250-499 acres; 500-999 acr es; 1000-1999 acres; or 2000 or more acres. Table 22 lists the frequency data for question number 52. Table 22. What is the si ze of your operation? ƒ % Less than 1 acre to 99 acres 16 17.6 100 acres to 249 acres 14 15.4 250 acres to 499 acres 9 9.9 500 acres to 999 acres 14 15.4 1000 acres to 1999 acres 8 8.8 2000 or more acres 29 31.9 Total 90 98.9 For this study it was pertinent to consid er the economic impact and consequences that would result from a successful agroterror ism attack. Therefore, questions number 50 and 53 asked respondents to select the range of the number of cattle at peak time on their facility and the average annua l gross receipts for the lives tock-related segment of the operation, respectively. Blank responses were coded as missing values. See Table 23 for the frequency statistics. Table 23. Operation Demographics Number of Cattle at peak ƒ % 1-50 animals 17 18.7 51-100 animals 18 19.8 101-300 animals 14 15.4 301-500 animals 11 12.1 501-1000 animals 5 5.5 1000+ animals 24 26.4 Missing values 2 2.2 Total 91 100.0 Average value of annual gross receipt ƒ % $1 to $9,999 16 17.6 $10,000 to $49,999 20 22.0 $50,000 to $99,999 10 11.0 $100,000 to $249,999 5 5.5 $250,000 to $499,999 10 11.0 $500,000 to $999,999 5 5.5 $1,000,000 or more 13 14.3

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58 Table 23. Continued. Average value of annual gross receipt ƒ % Missing values 12 13.2 Total 91 100.0 As reported in Table 23, the surveyed popul ation holds a signif icant portion of the beef cattle market in Florida, with 26.4% (N=24) of the population reporting more than 1,000 cattle on their production facility, a nd 14.3% (N=13) reporting $1,000,000 or more in annual gross receipts. This claim is validated by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (2004), wh ich reports that as of January 1, 2004 there were 950,000 beef cows in Florida, with 2002 cash receipts for Florida cattle and calves totaling $333,413,000. Therefore, if an agroterro rism attack were to be successful in Florida, the devastation woul d be felt both economically and most likely the plentiful food supply of beef would suffer. Respondents were asked if they were: a Landlord only; Operat or on land you own; Operator on rented land; Ot her, specify (See Appendix D for comments). Only 2.2% (N=2) are Landlords only, 57.1% (N=52) are operators on land they own, 17.6% (N=16) are operators on rented land, and 28.6% (N=26) reported some other identity. Finally, the surveyed beef producers were asked if th ey had a record keeping system on their livestock operation (question number 54, see Appendix A). An overwhelming majority of 90.1% (N=82) said “Yes”, 5.5% (N=5) said “No”, and 4.4% (N=4) either left it blank or selected “Don’t Know”. Chapter Summary The findings of the 91 respondents for this st udy were reported in this chapter. The results were organized by the objectives and demographics for the population were included. Statistics were shown to furthe r describe the frequencies and means.

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59 The objectives that guided these results we re: 1) identify the current levels of knowledge about agroterrorism held by Florida’ s beef cattle producers; 2) identify the level of preparedness against ag roterrorism attack(s); 3) determine the risk perceptions of the beef producer to bioterrorism and agro terrorism; 4) with this data, determine the producer’s preferences for the delivery of ag roterrorism educational materials. The results reported in this chapter will be re ported in the conclusions, recommendations, and limitations, in the forthcoming chapter. A summary of the findings will guide recommendations for future research and th e development of agroterrorism educational materials and workshops.

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60 CHAPTER 5 SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS The purpose of this study was to survey the current knowledge a nd risk perceptions about agroterrorism of Florid a’s beef cattle operations. The study focused on specific security risks to the beef cattle operation a nd subsequently how or from whom the beef producer sought biosecurity information. Th e independent variable for this study was risk perception, how “at risk ” the beef producer felt abou t the possibility of an agroterrorism attack. The dependent variable was the level of pr eparedness practiced on the beef operation. A research developed inst rument was used to collect data, and data was recorded from 66.4% of the Beef Cattle Short Course participant population. The contents of this chapter reports conclu sions, recommendations, and limitations of the study. Objectives The objectives for the study were to Identify current levels of knowledge about agroterrorism held by Florida’s beef cattle producers, Identify the level of preparedness against agroterrorism attack(s), Determine the risk perceptions of the beef producer to bioterrorism and agroterrorism, and With this data, determine producer’s prefer ences for the delivery of agroterrorism educational materials. Procedure The designated population for this study wa s a convenience sample of beef cattle producers that participated in the University of Florida IFAS Beef Cattle Short Course

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61 (BCSC), May 4-6, 2005. During the BCSC, 137 su rveys were distributed. Of the 137 distributed instruments, 91 useable questionn aires were returned to the researcher resulting in a 66.4% response rate. The surv ey instrument was modeled from a similar EDEN study designed for agriculture and horticulture producers and was improved following a pilot test (EDEN, 2003). Th e pilot test, conducted on March 15, 2005, was imperative to determine the validity and reliab ility of the instrument used in the study. The instrument data was collected at th e BCSC, as participants completed the questionnaire during the May 4-6, 2005 conference. The instrument consisted of 55 research developed questions and was divided into parts satisfying the above objectives. Data was analyzed using SPSS 11.5 fo r Windows™. The study objective data was analyzed through descriptiv e statistics, predominantly w ith means and frequencies. The Likert-type scaled items were trea ted as ordinal data and coded in SPSS accordingly. Each blank survey question was coded as missing data, and was not assigned a value in SPSS to avoid skewing the mean values. Conclusions The conclusions of the research data are organized and analyzed in relation to the four objectives initially introduced in Chapter One. Objective One Objective one aimed to determine and desc ribe the current knowledge levels of agroterrorism in the specific population of Florida beef cat tle producers. Agroterrorism refers to an act of any person knowingly or maliciously using biologi cal and/or chemical agents as weapons against the agricultural industry and/or the food supply. The term agroterrorism combines acts of terrorism with agricultural commodities and this study addresses the main threats and areas of concern for the agri cultural commodity of Florida

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62 beef cattle specifically. The surveyed samp le consisted of 91 Florida beef cattle producers in attendance at the BCSC May 4-6, 2 005. In order to satisfy the first study objective, Part III of the instrument aske d participants about agroterrorism workshop attendance, preferred contact person if ever concerned about biosecu rity, and biosecurity investments before and/ or after September 11th. When asked, “have you attended a workshop or general information session about biosecurity/agroterrorism?” 67% of the 91 respondents (N=6 1) reported never attending such an informational session. Only 28.6% (N=26) respondents had attended an informational session at least once, and a mere 4.4% (N=4) had participated in more than one workshop. These results indicate that Flor ida beef producers are not getting access to or are choosing not to access the educational materials nece ssary to provide adequate security on their respective operations. A lack of available workshop trainings offered to Florida beef cattle producers will increase the vulnerability to an ag roterrorism attack by possibly slowing the detection of a foreign animal disease on a beef cattle production facility. Next, when participants were asked to sele ct the top three persons they would most likely contact if they suspected an act of agroterrorism, the contact source that was selected most frequently by the population was Law Enforcement (ƒ=58, 63.8%). Furthermore, the frequency data in Table 7 reports the strength of the likelihood for contact when a beef cattle produc er suspects an act of agrote rrorism to their operation. This frequency data reaffirms the need to e ducate all contact sources listed in Table 7, especially Florida veterinarians, Florida la w enforcement, IFAS Extension agents, State

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63 and County emergency management, and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services about agroterr orism and risk communication. Lastly, the final question for objective one that determines the current application of agroterrorism knowledge and risk percep tions asks, “have you made considerable investments (time, money, or effort) to make your operation more biosecure?” An overwhelming majority of the population, 76.9 % (N=70), said No. These respondents have not invested time, money, or effort to increase security on th eir operation, even after the September 11th terrorist attacks. A mere 6.6% (N =6) reported “Yes, before and after September 11, 2001” and 9.9% (N=9) reported “Yes, after September 11, 2001”. This data verifies that Florida beef producers ha ve not been signifi cantly affected by the September 11th terrorist attacks, and have maintained the current level of security on their beef operation. Objective Two In order to satisfy objective two, a twosided Likert-type scale of questions 20-27 was included to determine respondents’ opini on of the importance of specific farm safeguards and the degree to which each beef producer practices that safeguard on his/her operation. The farm safeguard that was rated the highest in importance (on a scale of 14; 1=No importance, 4= Major Importance) was “Isolating a new animal from the herd” (M=3.43, Std. Dev. =0.75). Furthermore, “Isolating a new animal from the herd” was also rated highest (M=3.29, Std. Dev. =0.86) on the second Likert-type scale of “degree to which you practice” (on a scale of 1-4; 1=Never practice, 4=Always practice). The population agreed that isolating a new animal from the herd was the most important farm security safeguard and was prac ticed the most by the surveyed beef producers. The farm safeguard of “Participating in training progr ams to enable employees to recognize and

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64 report a disease outbreak” was ranked as moderate importance (M=3.15, Std. Dev. =0.89), but was rarely practiced by the population (M=2.38, Std. Dev. =0.98). Although the beef producers felt this was a valid practi ce in order to maintain biosecurity, most of the population rarely practiced this safeguard. The surveyed respondents also determined that the two safeguards that held the least importance on a beef pr oduction facility were “Requiring employees to wear coveralls” a nd “Requiring people entering the facility to shower in and out”, with reported means of 1.74 and 1.47, respectively. Moreover, these two safeguards were practiced the le ast among the respondents, M=1.38 and M=1.09, respectively. Although the threat of terrori sm has been heightened in the United States, Florida beef cattle producers do not feel that most farm safeguards are important nor do they practice these safeguards to prot ect their operation. Only tw o safeguards were considered moderately important, four safeguards were considered of minor importance, and two safeguards were of no importance to the sa mple population Likewise, the population felt that only one safeguard was moderately prac ticed, four were rarely practiced, and three safeguards were never practiced. These resu lts indicate that the importance of farm safeguards is not considered by Florida beef cattle producers during the daily operations of the farm. This safety attitude, in relati on to the practice of ba sic agroterrorism farm safeguards, results in most of the farm safety practices rarely or never being practiced. Therefore, a change in Florida beef cattle operator’s attitudes towards farm safety will directly influence the degree to which they pr actice agroterrorism farm safeguards. Objective Three The purpose of objective three was to gauge th e level of risk to an agroterrorism or bioterrorism attack perceived by the Florida beef producer. Part I (questions numbered 1-

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65 4) of the instrument listed four statements with a Likert-type s cale (1-5) with which respondents were to express their disagreement or agreement to the statements. For the statement, “I think an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in the U.S.”, the majority of the population ag reed, 56% (N=51) or strong ly agreed, 39.6% (N=36). Furthermore, 54.9% (N=50) of the population agr eed with the statement, “I think an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in Florida”, and 33.0% (N=30) strongly agreed. However, when the statement focu sed on the probability of an agroterrorism attack happening on the beef pr oducers’ own operation, opinions shifted. For example, only 28.6% (N=26) agreed, 37.4% (N=34) ne ither agreed or disagreed, and 14.3% (N=13) strongly disagreed to the statement, “I think an act of agro terrorism could happen on my operation.” The wide range of responses for this stat ement may be a result of misinformation about the seriousness of agro terrorism or the confidence held by beef producers in seeking guidance in the event agroterroris m impacts the Florida beef industry. Considering that 37.4% of the population neither agreed nor disagreed that an act of agroterrorism could happen on their operati on means that many producers felt uncertain about the probability of agro terrorism affecting them. Ho wever, since 87.9% of the population either agreed or strongly agreed that an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in Florida, beef cattle producers s hould be prepared for the possibility of an attack, considering that they strongly agree that it can ha ppen in the state where their operation is located. These results illustrate that when beef producers were asked if agroterrorism could happen to them, they we re less likely to agr ee, even though they agree it could happen somewhere in Florida.

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66 The final statement, “I feel prepared for an agroterrorism attack or biosecurity threat to my operation”, received mixed responses. The majority of the population disagreed 36.6% (N=33), 33.0% (N=30) neit her agreed nor disagreed, 18.7% (N=17) agreed, 8.8% (N=8) strongly disagreed and a small 2.2% (N=2) strongly agreed. These results prove that most respondents are unsur e about preparation of their beef production facility for an agroterrorism attack. The majority of the population disagreed with this statement, and 33.0% was undecided concerni ng agroterrorism preparedness. These findings confirm that agroterrorism educationa l materials and training sessions need to be created in order to better pr epare Florida beef cattle pr oducers in the event of an agroterrorism attack. Part II of the instrument (questions numb ered 5-16) targeted risk perceptions of specific areas of the beef cattle operation. Re spondents were asked to “Rate the Level of Perceived Threat” for each area that was liste d, on a 1-5 scale, with 1=None (no threat felt) to 5=Considerable threat The perceived threat of lo ss of income due to market losses was the largest area of concern fo r the population (M=3.39). However, the perceived threat of an animal disease outbr eak was another significant concern for beef producers (M=3.00). The perceived threat of animal death and the perceived threat of tampering with farm fences/gates also were of concern, with reported means of 2.79 and 2.91 respectively. The area that producers felt was at the least risk to terrorist activity was the perceived threat of employee reve nge, M=1.88. The majority of the population felt this area was of no threat, 45.1% (N=41), and 34.1% (31) felt it was of little threat. The perceived threat of loss of income due to market losses was rated as the highest concern for Florida beef cattle producers. In the event of a successful agroterrorism

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67 attack to a Florida beef cattle operation(s) economically the attack ed operation(s) would suffer financially as a result of decreased c onsumer confidence and/or would suffer from a loss of livestock available for market sale. Therefore, to protect against a loss of profit due to market fluctuations, Florida beef produ cers need to consider the importance of the farm safeguards (questions 20-27) discussed in Objective two, and begin practicing them to further protect the operation and livestock. Although the sample population rated employee revenge as the least perceived risk, attention should be focused on employee satisf action and work ethic. Farm managers should have regular employee meetings and act ively and professionally address specific concerns and questions of the employee. Employees often have unlimited access to the cattle operation and are trusted to care and main tain the production facility. Hence, risk communication with employees needs to be based on a trusting relationship, with the farm manager explicitly outlining farm safety risks, safety practices, and procedures and persons of contact if the em ployee suspects an agroterroris m attack to the operation. To better understand the aff ect of global agricultural issues on Florida beef production operations the instrument question, “To what extent have the Foot and Mouth outbreak in England and the December 2003 discovery of a Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) case in the U.S. infl uenced any decisions towards improving the security on your operation?” was included. The majority of the population felt that these global issues had influenced their decisi ons of improving security, 37.4% (N=34). Additionally, 18.7% (N=17) of the respondents were strongl y influenced, 12.1% (N=11) were minimally influenced, and 13.2% (N=12) have felt no influence. Therefore, the Foot and Mouth outbreak in the United Kingdom and the recent BSE case in the state of

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68 Washington have indeed raised awareness w ithin the Florida beef producer community, influencing decisions towards improving farm security. However, as reported in the previous objectives, Florida b eef cattle producers have done l ittle or nothing to practice further safety measures on their operations. Objective Four The final study objective aimed to utili ze the beef producers’ insights on their preferred sources of contact and printed material about ag roterrorism and bioagents. First, the participants were asked, “do you have access to educational material that can answer your agricultura l biosecurity questions?” The an swer choices of Yes; No; or Don’t Know prompted the following result s: 38.5% (N=35) reported Yes, 30.8% (28) reported No, and 30.8% (N=28) answered Don’ t Know or were blank responses. From these results it can be stated that a majority of the population did not have access to agroterrorism educational materials, or did not know if they had access. Questions 29-38 asked participants whom they would most likely contact if they wanted more information about agroterrorism or livestock specific bios ecurity threats. A Likert-type scale was created to represent th e likeliness to contact: 1=Very Unlikely to 5=Very Likely. The contact source that was preferred by the study population was the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, M=4.11, Std. Dev. = 0.90. Contact sources that were rated favorably by the respondents and should be prepared for agroterrorism questions ar e the following: UF-IFAS Extension Agent, M=3.99; Veterinarian, M=3.80; Producer Associat ion, M=3.56; Law enforcement, M=3.52; Another livestock producer, M=3.30; State or county emergency management, M=3.07; 50 respondents felt they didn’t know who th ey would contact, M=1.92; and only one respondent specified some other source as a preferred contact (see Appendix D).

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69 In relation to the preferred person/organi zation source, respondents were asked, “if you wanted to know more about agroterrorism or liv estock specific bios ecurity threats, where would you look for published informati on?” This question set duplicated the Likert-type scale for the previ ous set of questions (1=Very Unlikely to 5=Very Likely). The University of Florida received the hi ghest preference as a published information source, M=4.25, Std. Dev. = 0.83. The Ex tension Office would likely receive information requests during an agroterrorism threat or attack, M=4.05, and the World Wide Web also yielded high preference, M=3.93. The two sources unlikely to be used as an information source are the newspaper and library publications, M=2.44 and M=2.29, respectively. These results strengthen the call for a pplicable and accessible materials for the sample population. The University of Florid a is viewed as the expert and preferred source of educational materials, as UF is the Land Grant research institution for the state. The UF-IFAS Extension Service is viewed as another top source for agroterrorism information, needing the most current agro terrorism preparedness information in the event of an agroterrorism th reat or attack on Florida. The final question applicable to objective four asked, “if the Extension Office were to concentrate on educating livestock pr oducers about agroterrorism which delivery method would you prefer?” The educational delivery method preferred by 41.8% (N=38) of the participants was a weekend traini ng workshop. The next preferred delivery method was reading printed materials at one’s own pace, 24.2% (N=22), followed by one-on-one contact with an Ex tension agent, 11.0% (N=10). The least de sired delivery method was taking classes through the World Wide Web, 8.8% (N=8). There were 13

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70 (14.3%) blank or incorrectly marked responses for this question. The sample population for this study was surveyed at the BCSC thr ee-day workshop from Wednesday to Friday. This may have biased the sample populat ion to choose weekend workshop as the preferred delivery method of agroterrorism tr aining, as they were in attendance at the three day BCSC. Limitations of the Study A limitation to this study was the availability of the audience surveyed. It was not a random sample, instead a convenience sample. Participants were surveyed based on their attendance to the Beef Cattle Short Course Therefore, if the survey instrument had been mailed out, there could have been a more representative sample. Another limitation to the study was th e population sample size. Although a response rate of 66.4% (N=91) is acceptable, more preparation to be allotted time on the BCSC agenda would have ensured a larger sample size. Summary of Findings Based on the literature reviewed in Ch apter Two, the need for agroterrorism preparedness and biosecurity practices has b een called to attention since the September 11th terrorist attacks, the Foot and Mouth disease outbreak in th e United Kingdom, and the recent BSE case in the state of Washington. The need to protect America’s safe, affordable, and abundant food supply should be a top priority in each beef producer’s daily agenda. However, biosecurity safety practices may be perceived as costly, time consuming, and or too elaborate for many b eef producers to implement on the production facility. The objective of this study wa s to determine the agroterrorism risk perceptions held by Florida beef cattle producers. The study results determined that beef producers feel at

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71 risk to agroterrorism. Most Florida beef producers felt that an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in the United States and somewhere in Florida. Furthermore, respondents mainly disagreed or neither agreed nor disagreed with feeling prepared for an agroterrorism attack to his/ her operation. The population fe lt that agroterrorism could happen in the United States and/or Florida, but remained neutral about the probability of agroterrorism happening on his/he r operation. Yet, if an act of agroterrorism were to happen, the majority of the population felt unprep ared for an agroterrorism attack. These findings confirm the need for more educatio nal materials and progr ams to better prepare Florida beef producers for biote rrorism and agroterrorism. In order to prevent and bette r protect Florida beef opera tions from bioagents, there are specific protective measures that would provide a barrier for te rrorist activity. The population only rated two safeguard practices moderately important: isolating a new animal from the herd and pa rticipating in training programs to enable employees to recognize and report a disease outbreak. Surp risingly, two safety practices were ranked at almost no importance: requiring employees to wear coveralls and requiring people entering the beef cattle operation to shower in an d out. Yet, if a beef facility is to remain proactive against the introduction of bioagents, ever y possible method of protection should be practiced. But, the only safeguard moderately practiced by the population was isolating a new animal from the herd. If beef producers are only consistently pract icing the farm safeguard of isolating a new animal from the herd, then a successful agroterrorism attack could be achieved with relatively little effort. Kohnen (2000) states that livestock producer s can reduce risk by increasing biosecurity measures at their facili ties. But, “not all farms adhere to these

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72 guidelines. A survey of 252 farms that raise hens for egg pr oduction, some with 200,000 egg layers, found that almost one-third of th e sites allow nonbusiness visitors into the laying houses. More than 85 percent of dairy farms do not isolate new cows from the rest of the herd for any period of time” (Kohnen, 2000, p. 23). These findings are cause for concern, as biosecurity is in the beef producer’s best intere st. By practicing agroterrorism farm safety, the producer will ensure continued production of quality beef and a stable economic market. In order to provide agroterrorism pr otection, Florida beef producers need information and educational materials. The preferred contact source concerning biosecurity questions is the Florida Departme nt of Agriculture and Consumer Services. The preferred source of reference for pub lished agroterrorism information is the University of Florida. The UF-IFAS Extens ion office was also ranked at the top as a published information source, with an Exte nsion agent also ranked high as a contact source. The above mentioned organizatio ns and individuals should prepare and familiarize themselves about agroterrorism a nd bioagents in order to inform the public with the most current and co rrect biosecurity practices. Yet, all contact sources and published information sources listed in Tables 19 and 20 should be educated and prepared for an agroterrorism attack or biosecurity threat to Florida beef cattle operations. Moreover, the preferred method of learning a bout agroterrorism and biosecurity practices is a weekend training workshop. Overall, the population of beef producers consisted of large operations, 26.4% (N=24) respondents reported over 1,000 animals on his/her production facility at the peak time of year. Moreover, 14.3% (N=13) res pondents reported an average annual gross

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73 receipt value of $1,000,000 or more representing a substantial portion of the Florida economic beef cattle market. In order to determine the percentage of beef cattle operations that track cattle and keep current records about operat ion activity, question 54 asked, “is there a record keeping system on your livestock operation ?” An overwhelming 90.1% (N=82) of the respondents confirmed the presence of a record keeping system on their operation. This is encouraging as the United States Animal Identification Plan (USAIP) program is in the process of being instituted. The goal of the USAIP is, “to achieve a traceback system th at can identify all animals and premises potentially exposed to an animal with a Foreign Animal Dis ease (FAD) within 48 hours after discovery” (United States Animal Identification Plan, 2003, p. 2). The results from this study can be used to develop written educational materials about agroterrorism, bioterrorism, and bioagent s. Specific farm sa feguards and areas of concern can be identified and addressed. Fu rthermore, this study di stinguishes the beef producer’s preferred contact person and printe d material source, a llowing the educational materials to be supplied to th ese individuals and or ganizations to be distributed to the public in a more timely and beneficial manner. Finally, the preferred method of delivery for agroterrorism educational materi als is a weekend training workshop. A recent example of agroterrorism works hop training was four regional workshops hosted by The University of Minnesota Exte nsion Service titled, “Protecting Our Food System from Intentional Att ack”. The full-day workshops, scheduled for June and July of 2005, were tailored to people working in Minnesota’s food industry. This included farming, food protection, manufacturing, and regulation, with a specific focus on dairy, meat, grain, and feed producers, extension educators, local emergency response, public

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74 health care professionals, and food transpor tation personnel. (Unive rsity of Minnesota Extension Service, 2005). John Shutske, agri cultural health and sa fety specialist with Extension, and the event coordinator said, “ev en though the focus will be on intentional events, the program will be very helpful in planning for unintentional events. These include natural disasters, disease outbreak s and foodborne illness outbreaks that occur every year” (University of Minnesota Exte nsion Service, 2005, p. 1). The UF-IFAS Extension Service could examine the format of this program and tailor it to apply to the needs of Florida livestock producers. Recommendations The findings from this research suggeste d that Florida beef producers need more accessible and applicable agroterrorism educa tional materials to better protect against bioagents. Florida beef pr oducers identify with the nationa l bioterrorism threat, and agree that agroterrorism could happen somewher e in Florida. Therefore, in order to preserve the Florida beef cattle business, pr eparatory actions needed to be taken to increase biosecurity on stat e-wide production facilities. Further research needs to be conducted to determine the pref erred delivery method of agroterrorism educational materials. A more exhaustive list of delivery methods should be offered to Florida beef cattle pr oducers, including the choice of week-day training. Multiple agroterrorism training workshops should be organized throughout Florida to begin the educational process. The wo rkshops should follow th e pre-test/post-test format, testing the risk perceptions and ag roterrorism knowledge of the beef producers before the workshop and after the workshop. A follow-up survey should be conducted to

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75 measure the application and pr actice of the learned works hop security measures on the beef operation. A mail survey like this study should be c onducted on Florida dairy cattle producers to determine their risk percep tions and agroterrorism knowle dge. The mail survey would reveal similarities and any differences betw een dairy and beef producers’ opinions of farm safeguards and preferred agroterrori sm contacts. The reported data would effectively determine if the same agroterro rism weekend workshop training would benefit both dairy and beef producers simultaneously, or if their needs dictate differing methods. Future agroterrorism materials should in clude discussion of the farm safeguard measure which includes the isolation of animal (s) that have been traveling and in contact with other animals and facilities, such as is the case with show animals. The survey instrument used in this st udy could be adapted and administered to other livestock industries. It is recommended that individu al instrument questions be tailored to apply to different animal industr ies for particular operation scenarios. For example, Part IV of the instrument, whic h measured agroterrorism preparedness in relation to specific farm safeguards, should be revised to inquire about farm safeguards that apply to other anim al-related enterprises.

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APPENDIX A SURVEY INSTRUMENT

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77 Agricultural Security Risks Survey for Florida Livestock Producers Agricultural & Biological Engineering College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Frazier Rogers Hall University of Florida P.O. Box 110570 Gainesville, FL 32611-0570 Ph: (352) 392-1864

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78 Purpose of the Study The purpose of this study is to survey the current knowledge perceptions about Agroterrorism from Florida Beef and Dairy production operations. Your answ ers will serve as a guide when educational programs and materi als are developed for homeland security. For this survey Homeland Security is a state of being prepared to prevent or reduce the impact of a terr orist attack on domestic natural resources, the economic sectors, or the American people. This survey refers to two specific threats: Agroterrorism and Bioterrorism For example, agroterrorism could involve the introduction of a foreign animal dise ase onto a farm, theft of chemicals for a meth lab, or acts of destructi on by an activist group. Bioterrorism refers to an act of any person know ingly or maliciously introducing disease-causing agents or organism s to an animal, plant or human population, thus threatening food and water resources as well as human and animal life. Please take a few minutes and an swer each question to the best of your knowledge. You do not have to answer any question you do not wish to answer. The survey wi ll take an estimated 15 minutes to complete. The responses you provide will remain confidential. Only summarized data will be reported in order to protect the identity of each individual respondent. Thank you for participating in the study. Sincerely, Jodi L. DeGraw Graduate Assistant Agricultural and Biological Engineering 1

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79 Agricultural Security Risks Su rvey for Livestock Producers PART I – Perceptions about Agroterrorism Agroterrorism refers to an act of any person knowingly or maliciously using biological and/or chemical agents as weapons against the agricultural industry and/or the food supply, or using agricultural chemicals and machinery to perform an act of terrorism against any segment of the American population. Therefore, please circle the number which best reflects your feelings to the following statements: (5) Strongly Agree (4) Agree (3) Neither Agree nor Disagree (2) Disagree (1) Strongly Disagree 2 Strongly Agree Agree Neither Agree or Disagree Strongly Disagree 1. I think that an act of agroterrorism 5 4 3 2 1 could happen somewhere in the U.S. 2. I think that an act of agroterrorism 5 4 3 2 1 could happen somewhere in Florida. 3. I think that an act of agroterrorism 5 4 3 2 1 could happen on my operation. 4. I feel prepared for an agroterrorism 5 4 3 2 1 attack or some othe r biosecurity threat to my operation.

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80 PART IIRate the Level of Perceived Threat Rate the Level of Perceived Threat you feel for each aspect of your operation. Please circle the number which best reflects the level you feel your operation is at risk to terrorist activity. Rate the degree of perceived threat for each aspect as: (5) CONSIDERABLE threat (4) MUCH threat (3) SOME threat (2) LITTLE threat (1) NONE (No threat felt) 3 Considerable Much Some Little None 5. Water Contamination 5 4 3 2 1 6. Feed Contamination 5 4 3 2 1 7. Animal Death 5 4 3 2 1 8. Animal Disease Outbreak 5 4 3 2 1 9. Fertilizer Theft/Misuse 5 4 3 2 1 10. Employee Revenge 5 4 3 2 1 11. Chemical Contamination 5 4 3 2 1 12. Zoonotic Illness 5 4 3 2 1 (Disease transmitted from animal to human) 13. Loss of Income Due to Market Loss 5 4 3 2 1 14. Tampering with Facilities 5 4 3 2 1 15. Tampering with Fences/Gates 5 4 3 2 1 16. Other, please specify: 5 4 3 2 1

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81 PART IIIGaining Knowle dge about Agroterrorism 17. Have you attended a workshop or general information session about biosecurity/agroterrorism? ____ Yes, at least once ____ More than once ____ No 18. If you suspected an act of agroterrorism (or breech of security) on your operation, from whom would you seek advice? ( Select the three you would most likely contact). ____ Veterinarian ____ Extension Agent ____ Florida Dept. of Agriculture ____ Another livestock producer ____ Law enforcement ____ USDA ____ Producer Association ____ State or county Emergency Management ____ Don’t know ____ Other (please specify) _________________ ____________________________________ 19. Have you made considerable investments (time, money or effort) to make your operation more biosecure? ____ Yes, before September 11, 2001 ____ Yes, before and after September 11, 2001 ____ Yes, after September 11, 2001 ____ No ____ Don’t know 4

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82 PART IVAgroterrorism Preparedness Below is a list of safeguards that one may practice on the farm in order to reduce the likelihood of loss of production due to disease introduction. To the LEFT circle the number which represents your opinion of the importance of the safeguard to better protect your livestock operation. To the RIGHT circle the degree to which you practice the indicated safeguard on your livestock operation, if the scenario does not apply to your farm, circle Not Applicable. Circle your responses 5 Importance of the Safeguard Major Importance Moderate Importance Minor Importance No Importance Degree to Which You Practice Always Practice Moderate Practice Rarely Practice Never Practice 4 3 2 1 20. Limiting visitors 4 3 2 1 Not Applicable 4 3 2 1 21. Requiring a waiting period for visitors who have been on another farm 4 3 2 1 Not Applicable 4 3 2 1 22. Isolating a new animal for observation before introducing it to the entire her d 4 3 2 1 Not Applicable 4 3 2 1 23. Requiring employees to wear coveralls and shoe covers 4 3 2 1 Not Applicable

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83 Circle your responses 6 Importance of the Safeguard Major Importance Moderate Importance Minor Importance No Importance Degree to Which you Practice Always Practice Moderate Practice Rarely Practice Never Practice 4 3 2 1 24. Requiring people entering the facility to shower in and shower out 4 3 2 1 Not Applicable 4 3 2 1 25. Conducting a background check on potential hires 4 3 2 1 Not Applicable 4 3 2 1 26. Have regular meetings with employees to determine levels of their satisfaction 4 3 2 1 Not Applicable 4 3 2 1 27. Participate in a training program(s) that will enable employees to quickly reco g nize and re p ort a disease 4 3 2 1 Not Applicable

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84 28. Do you have access to educational material that can answer your agricultural biosecurity questions? If you answer “Yes”, please write in the material source in the blank space below: _____ Yes _____ No _____ Don’t Know If you wanted to know more about ag roterrorism or livestock specific biosecurity threats, how likely would it be for you to contact the following? Please circle the number which best represents your response. (5) VERY Likely (4) FAIRLY Likely (3) LIKELY (2) UNLIKELY (1) VERY Unlikely 7 Very Likely Fairly Likely Likely Unlikely Very Unlikely 29. Veterinarian 5 4 3 2 1 30. Extension Agent 5 4 3 2 1 31. Florida Dept. of Agriculture 5 4 3 2 1 32. Another Livestock Producer 5 4 3 2 1 33. Law Enforcement 5 4 3 2 1 34. USDA 5 4 3 2 1 35. Producer Association 5 4 3 2 1 36. State or County Emergency Mgt. 5 4 3 2 1 37. Don’t Know Who I Would Contact 5 4 3 2 1 38. Other, please specify: 5 4 3 2 1

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85 If you wanted to know more about ag roterrorism or livestock specific biosecurity threats, where would you look for published information? Please circle the number which best represents your response. (5) VERY Likely (4) FAIRLY Likely (3) LIKELY (2) UNLIKELY (1) VERY Unlikely 46. To what extent have the Foot and Mouth outbreak in England and the December 2003 discovery of a Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) case in the U.S. influenced any decisions towards improving the secu rity on your operation? 8 Very Likely Fairly Likely Likely Unlikely Very Unlikely 39. Farm Magazine 5 4 3 2 1 40. Newspaper 5 4 3 2 1 41. On the World Wide Web 5 4 3 2 1 42. Library Publications 5 4 3 2 1 43. Extension Office 5 4 3 2 1 44. University of Florida 5 4 3 2 1 45. Other, please specify 5 4 3 2 1 Strongly Influenced 5 Influenced 4 Neither 3 Minimal Influence 2 No Influence 1

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86 PART VDemographics 47. Are you: _____ Male _____ Female 48. How many years have you been in the Livestock production business? Select one. _____ 1 day 12 months _____ 13 months 2 years _____ 25 months 3 years _____ 37 months 4 years _____ 49 months 5 years _____ More than 5 years 49. Indicate the type of Live stock production(s) that apply to you by circling from the choices: BEEF DAIRY 50. Please select the number of cattle on your production facility during your peak time of the year (when you are at your maximum). Select one. _____ 1-50 animals _____ 51-100 animals _____ 101-300 animals _____ 301-500 animals _____ 501-1000 animals _____ 1000+ animals 51. Are you: ____ Landlord only ____ Operator on land you own ____ Operator on rented land ____ Other (specify) ____________________________ 9

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87 PART VOperation Demographics 52. What is the si ze of your operation? ____ Less than 1 acre to 99 acres ____ 100 – 249 acres ____ 250 – 499 acres ____ 500 – 999 acres ____ 1000 – 1999 acres ____ 2000 or more acres 53. What is the average value of your annual gross receipts for the livestock-related se gment of your operation? ____ $1 to $9,999 ____ $10,000 $49,999 ____ $50,000 $99,999 ____ $100,000 $249,999 ____ $250,000 $499,999 ____ $500,000 $999,999 ____ $1,000,000 or more 54. Is there a record keeping system on your livestock operation? _____ Yes _____ No _____ Don’t Know 55. If the Extension Service we re to concentrate on educating livestock producers about agro terrorism which delivery method would you prefer? Please select your top choice : _____ Weekend Training Workshop _____ Read printed materials at your own pace _____ Take classes through the World Wide Web _____ One-on-One contact with an Extension agent 10

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88 Thank you for your time! Your participation in this ques tionnaire is appreciated and the information collected will be used to more effectively create Agroterrorism educational materials. Do you have any additional comments, concerns, or questions about livestock secu rity issues? Feel free to provide feedback in the blank space below:

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89 APPENDIX B INFORMED CONSENT FORM

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90 APPENDIX C INFORMED CONSENT SCRIPT

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91 APPENDIX D SURVEY COMMENTS The following is a listing of survey comment s that were included on the instrument by the participants. Question # 16: Rate the level of perceive d threat you feel for each aspect of your operation. Other, please specify: Fire-range (need for management) Question # 18: If you suspected an act of agroterrorism (or breech of security) on your operation, from whom would you s eek advice? Other, please specify: FDACS, SART I was an intelligence analyst for the Dept. of Def. on biological warfare and have extensive literature on agroterrorism Florida Disaster Handbook, SART manual, ESF-17 Internet searches IFAS U of F USDA, FDACS, State Vet USDA, FDACS, WWW, UF Educational materials from meetings IFAS website, DFAS website, USDA website Journals, Internet, trade magazines, Extension, etc

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92 Internet search BSE, Foot and Mouth Internet Fla. Dept. of Ag Not all-W.W.W. Internet No for pastures, yes for citrus Question # 38: If you wanted to know mo re about agroterrorism or livestock specific biosecurity threats, how likely w ould it be for you to contact the following? Other, please specify: Internet Question #45: If you wanted to know mo re about agroterrorism or livestock specific biosecurity threats, where would you look for published information? Other, please specify: Florida SART manual Question # 46: To what extent have the Foot and Mouth outbreak in England and the December 2003 discovery of a Bovine S pongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) case in the U.S. influenced any decisions toward s improving security on your operation? FCA, Farm Bureau, Fla. Dept. of Agricu lture, I attended a seminar in Okeechobee as a result of Question #51: Are you: Ot her, please specify.

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93 Employer of operator on operator owned land VP Ranch manager NRCS employee Manager Mgr/Consultant Manager Owned and rented land Ranch hand Ranch Foreman Cowboy Foreman Ranch Hand Ranch Manager Mngr. for Company Research Center Manager Farm Manager MGR. Cowhand Consultant Manager Manager Question #54: Is there a record keeping system on your livestock operation? Somewhat deficient system Question # 55: If the Extension Service were to concentrate on educating livestock producers about agroterrorism which deliv ery method would you prefer? Additional comments: One day workshop Weekday training You will have to use all of these to get us trained At Short course and qtr. meeting Additional Comments on the back page of the survey: Farm security training will be most effective as a partnership between IFAS/Extension, FDACS, Emergency Mana gement (ESF-17), Florida SART at local county level

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94 We do not allow anyone on premises-or around animals Because we reside at our ranch and our length of time in agriculture, we feel fortunate to be present to keep an eye on the pastures and herd Spray down boots w/ alcohol spray bottle

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95 REFERENCES Aakko, E. (2004). Risk Communication, Ri sk Perception, and Public Health. Wisconsin Medical Journal 103(1), 25-27. Atchison, R.J. (2002). Cited from Powell, L. & Self, W.R. (2004). Personalized Fear, Personalized Control, and Reactions to the September 11 Attacks. North American Journal of Psychology, 6(1), 55-70. Bostrom. (2001). Cited from Powell, L. & Self, W.R. (2004). Personalized Fear, Personalized Control, and Reactions to the September 11 Attacks. North American Journal of Psychology, 6(1), 55-70. Bostrom, A. (Jan 2004). Risk Percep tions: “Experts” vs. “Lay People”. Duke Envtl. L. Pol’y F. 8. 101-109. Brown, P., Will, R.G., Bradley, R., Asher, D. M., & Detwiler, L. (Jan.-Feb. 2001). Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy and Variant Creutzfeldt-Jacob Disease: Background, Evolution, and Current Concerns. Emerging Infectious Diseases 7(1), 6-16. Cameron, G., Pate, J., & Vogel, K. (Sept/Oct 2001). Planting Fear. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists 57(5), 38-44. Casagrande, R. (2002, July). Biologi cal Warfare Targeted at Livestock. BioScience 52(7), 577-581. Casagrande, R. (2004, July). What Can be Done to Prevent or Mitigate Attacks on Agriculture and the Food Supply. Presented at the AgrowKnowledge Agroterrorism conference, Kirkwood Co mmunity College, Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Christy, G., Wang, E.A., Lehtola, C.J., & Brown, C.M. (2004). Introducing SART, Lesson Plan I-1. Retrieved July 9, 2005, from http://www.flsart.org/trai ningmodules/intro-LP-1-scr.pdf Chung, W. (2002). Cited from Powell, L. & Self, W.R. (2004). Personalized Fear, Personalized Control, and Reactions to the September 11 Attacks. North American Journal of Psychology, 6(1), 55-70. Dawson, J., & Guinnessy, P. (2002). Cited from Powell, L. & Self, W.R. (2004). Personalized Fear, Personalized Contro l, and Reactions to the September 11 Attacks. North American Journal of Psychology 6(1), 55-70.

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96 DeGraw, J. (2004). Survey of Safety Pract ices on Animal Production Operations in Florida. Journal of Undergraduate Research 6(3), 1-3. Retrieved July 6, 2005, from http://www.clas.ufl.edu/jur/20 0411/papers/paper_degraw.html EDEN. (2003). Homeland Security Survey of Ag and Hort Producers. Zoomerang. Retrieved July 29, 2003, from http://www.zoomerang.com/reports/public_report.zgi ? Fenner, C.J. (2002). Cited from Powell, L ., & Self, W.R. (2004) Personalized Fear, Personalized Control, and Reactions to the September 11 Attacks. North American Journal of Psychology, 6(1), 55-70. Ferguson, N.E., Steele, L., Crawford, C.Y., Hue bner, N.L., Fonseka, J.C., Bonander, J.C., & Kuehnert, M.J. (June 2003). Bioterrorism Web Site Resources for Infectious Disease Clinicians and Epidemiologists. Clinical Infectious Diseases 36(11), 14581473. Florida Department of Agriculture and Cons umer Services.(2004). Agriculture Florida’s Economic Engine, Florida Agriculture Sta tistical Directory. Retrieved July 8, 2005, from http://www.floridaagriculture.com/pubs/pubform/pdf/Florida _Agriculture_Statistical_Directory_2004 .pdf Foxell, J.W. (2001). Current Trends in Agroterrorism (Antilivestock, Anticrop, and Antisoil Bioagricultural Terrorism) and Th eir Potential Impact on Food Security. Studies in Conflict & Terrorism 24, 107-129. Frewer, L. (2004). The Public a nd Effective Risk Communication. Toxicology Letters 149, 391-397. Frischknecht, F. (2003). The Hi story of Biological Warfare. European Molecular Biology Organization Special Issue: Science & Society 4, S47-S52. Gewin, V. (January 2003). Bioterrorism: Agriculture Shock. Nature 421, 106-108. Haapala, I., & Probart, C. (Mar/Apr 2004) Food Safety Knowledge, Perceptions, and Behaviors among Middle School Students. Journal of Nutrition Education & Behavior 36(2), 71-76. Hegland, C. (January 2004). What if Onions Were a Terrorist Plot? National Journal 36(2), 114-116. Henderson, D.A. (2004). The Threat of Aerosolized Biological Weapons. American Society of Heating, Refrigerating an d Air-Conditioning Engineers Journal 50-53. Henley, E., & Herrmann, J. (August 2004). Mad Cow Disease: Dealing Sensibly with a New Concern. The Journal of Family Practice 53(8), 645-648.

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97 Huddy,L., Khatib, N., & Capelos, T. (2002). Cite d from Powell, L., & Self, W.R. (2004). Personalized Fear, Personalized Contro l, and Reactions to the September 11 Attacks. North American Journal of Psychology, 6(1), 55-70. Iowa State University. (2004). Agroterrori sm Awareness Education. Safeguarding American agriculture (Version 1.2). [C omputer software]. Ames, Iowa. Iowa State University. (2004). Bioterrorism Awareness Education. Zoonotic Disease Training for Veterinarians (Version 1.3) [Computer software]. Ames, Iowa. Irani, T. (Fall 2004). Research Stra tegies. AEE 6767 Course Packet. Khan, A.S., Swerdlow, D.L., & Juranek, D. D. (Jan/Feb 2001). Precautions against Biological and Chemical Terrorism Di rected at Food and Water Supplies. Public Health Reports 116 (1), 3-14. Koblentz, G. (Winter 2003/04). Pathogens as Weapons. International Security 28(3), 84122. Kohnen, A. (October 2000). “R esponding to the Threat of Agroterrorism: Specific Recommendations for the United States Department of Agriculture.” BCSIA Discussion Paper 2000-29, ESDP Disc ussion Paper ESDP-20000-04, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. Kurtz, J. (2002). Farm Measures to Count er Terrorism Also Enhance Worker Safety. Retrieved July 7, 2005, from http://www.extension.umn.edu/exte nsionnews/2002/WorkerSafety.html Lee, R.V., Harbison, R.D., & Dra ughon, F.A. (2003). Food as a Weapon. Food Protection Trends 23(8), 664-674. Leviten, A., & Olexa, M.T. (November 2003). 9/11 and Agricultural Security. Florida Bar Journal, 77(10), 64-68. Meadows, M. (January-February 2004). Th e FDA and the Fight Against Terrorism. FDA Consumer 38(1), 20-22. Peters, K.M. (June 2003). Growing Threat. Government Executive 35(7), 21-25. Powell, L. & Self, W.R. (2004). Personalized Fear, Personalized Cont rol, and Reactions to the September 11 Attacks. North American Journal of Psychology, 6(1), 55-70. Reppy, J. (2003). Regulating Biotechnology in the Age of Homeland Security. Science Studies 16(2), 38-51. Reyna, V.F. (April 2004). How People Ma ke Decisions That Involve Risk. Current Directions in Psychological Science 13(2), 60-66.

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98 Salerno, R., Barnett, N., & Kolem, J. ( 2003). Cited from Reppy, J. (2003). Regulating Biotechnology in the Age of Homeland Security. Science Studies 16(2), 38-51. Slovic, P. (April 1987). Perception of Risk. Science 236, 280-285. Slovic, P. (1994). Perceptions of Risk: Paradox and Challenge. Future Risks and Risk Management 63-78. Slovic, P. (2001). The Risk Game. Journal of Hazardous Materials 86, 17-24. Slovic, P. (1999). Trust, Emotion, Sex, Polit ics, and Science: Surveying the RiskAssessment Battlefield. Risk Analysis 19(4), 689-701. Sobel, J., Khan, A.S., & Swerdlow, D.L. (Mar ch 2002). Threat of a Biological Terrorist Attack on the US Food Supply: the CDC Perspective. Lancet 359(9309), 874-881. Takada, A. (2004). Japan Wants More Info Before Easing U.S. Mad Cow Ban. Retrieved October 10, 2004 from http://www.alertnet.org/th enews/newsdesk/T188054.htm United States Animal Identification Program A Work in Progress. (2003). Protecting American Animal Agriculture. Version 4.1. Presented at the AgrowKnowledge Agroterrorism conference, Cedar Rapids, Iowa. University of Florida IFAS Extension. (2005) Celebrating the Fift y-fourth Annual Beef Cattle Short Course. [Program pamphlet]. Hilton University of Florida Conference Center. Gainesville, FL. University of Minnesota Extension Servic e. (2005). Protectin g food system from intentional attack is to pic of four workshops. Retrieved July 7, 2005 from http://www.extension.umn.edu/ex tensionnews/2005/protectingfood.html USDA Fact Sheets. Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy – “Mad Cow Disease”.. Retrieved October 10, 2004 from http://www.fsis.usda.gov/Fact_Sheets/ Bovine_Spongiform_Encephalopathy_Mad_ Cow_Disease/index.asp Wang, E.A., Lehtola, C.J., & Brown, C.M. (2005) Florida State Agricultural Response Team. Paper presented at the 2005 Summer C onference of the National Institute for Farm Safety, Inc., Wintergreen, VA. Wheelis, M., Casagrande, R., & Madden, L.V. (July 2002). Biological Attack on Agriculture: Low-Tech, High-Impact Bioterrorism. BioScience 52(7), 569-576. Zilinskas. (1997). Cited from Frischknecht, F. (2003). The History of Biological Warfare. European Molecular Biology Organizati on Special Issue: Science & Society 4, S47-S52.

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99 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH The author was born Jodi Lynn DeGraw on February 9, 1982, in Lakeland, Florida. She grew up in Polk County and graduate d from Mulberry High School in May 2000. Her love for livestock began early through 4-H and FFA exhibiting horses. Jodi earned her Associate of Arts de gree in December 2000 from Polk Community College after completing many dual enrollment courses while still in high school. She spent a semester at Florida Southern Colle ge in Lakeland before transferring to the University of Florida in August 2001. While pursuing her undergra duate degree, Jodi became involved in numerous campus activities and honor societies. These included the UF Horse Judging Team, the Horseman’s Associ ation, the Forestry Club, the Agricultural Operations Management Club ( AOM) club, the College of Agricu ltural and Life Sciences Ambassadors, the University Scholars Pr ogram, Gamma Sigma Delta, and Golden Key International Honor Society. Jodi earned her Bachelor of Science with honors in agricultural operations management specializin g in environmental sciences in December 2003. During her senior year, Jodi was accepted into graduate school and, through the combined degree program, began work on her Ma ster of Science degree in agricultural and biological engineer ing with a focus on agricultural safety and a minor in agricultural education and communication.


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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0011863/00001

Material Information

Title: Perceptions of Florida Beef Cattle Producers on Preparedness for an Agroterrorism Attack
Physical Description: Mixed Material
Copyright Date: 2008

Record Information

Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
System ID: UFE0011863:00001

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0011863/00001

Material Information

Title: Perceptions of Florida Beef Cattle Producers on Preparedness for an Agroterrorism Attack
Physical Description: Mixed Material
Copyright Date: 2008

Record Information

Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
System ID: UFE0011863:00001


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PERCEPTIONS OF FLORIDA BEEF CATTLE PRODUCERS ON PREPAREDNESS
FOR AN AGROTERRORISM ATTACK















By

JODI LYNN DEGRAW


A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
MASTER OF SCIENCE

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


2005

































Copyright 2005

by

Jodi Lynn DeGraw

































This document is dedicated to the life and memory of Terry M. DeGraw.















ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

I would like to express my deepest appreciation to my committee members, Drs.

Carol Lehtola, Shannon Washburn, and Roger Nordstedt. Their wisdom, encouragement,

and patience during my research journey were a blessing to me. I would also like to

thank Dr. Tim Marshall, Dr. Matt Hersom, and Kathleen Eubanks for the success of my

survey. The cooperation of the Alachua County Cattlemen's Association and the Beef

Cattle Short Course participants was greatly appreciated.

I want to thank my fellow "Safety" grad students for all of their support and

encouragement along the way. Discussing our research passions, goals,

accomplishments, and discouragements strengthened and motivated me more than they

know. I owe my deepest gratitude to Elizabeth Wang ("girl") for always listening and

helping me, and I consider her my confidant and friend forever. Bill Todd's belief in my

talent to complete my master's degree was always a comfort to me. Ed Drannbauer's

encouragement and ability to make me laugh was a blessing in frustrating times.

I would like to thank my mother for instilling in me the motivation and burning

desire to learn from a very young age. I credit her and my late father for setting a

positive educational example and always encouraging me to better myself. My twin

sister, Dawn, is my best friend and without her love I would not be the person I am today.

I thank her for always being there for me, through thick and thin. Furthermore, my

grandparents, Jim and Jean Milsop, and my Uncle Jim were supportive throughout my

college career and I appreciate their continued guidance.









I would like to thank the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences at UF for

allowing me the chance to get the best education possible. Also, the people of the

Agricultural and Biological Engineering Department made my time at UF special, I will

hold each of them near and dear to my heart. Special thanks go to Charles Brown for

assisting me with my survey and NASD work.

Finally, I thank James for his love and encouragement during this rigorous journey.

He provided me with advice, love, and support when I needed it the most. Our time

together has been magical, and I credit him for changing my life for the better.
















TABLE OF CONTENTS



A C K N O W L E D G M E N T S ................................................................................................. iv

LIST OF TA BLE S .............................................................................. .. ........ viii

A B ST R A C T ................. ...................................................................................... ..... x

CHAPTER

1 IN TR OD U CTION ............................................... .. ......................... ..

Problem Statem ent .................. ............................ .... .. .. .................... .5
O bjectiv e s ................................................................... ................................. . 5
D definition of T erm s ................. ................................ ........ ........ ...............

2 REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE ........................................ ......................... 7

H history of Biological W arfare ......................................................... .............. 8
A accessibility to B biological W eapons................................... ..................................... 10
A groterrorism ....................................................... 14
Mad Cow Disease ............ ....... ........... .... ........ ........ 15
Human Risk ...... .............. ......... ..................18
E conom ic Im pact............. ........................................................ .. .... ..... .22
R isk P erc ep tio n s ................................................................................................... 2 4
R isk C om m unication ...................... ........ ............ ................. .... .. .....27
Chapter Summary ..................................... .............. ......... 30

3 M E T H O D O L O G Y ......................................... ........... ................. .......................... 3 1

R e se arch D e sig n ................................................................................................... 3 2
Population ............... ..... ......... .......................................33
D ata C o lle ctio n ..................................................................................................... 3 4
Instrumentation .......................... .............................. ..... .. ........ 34
Variables ............... ..................... ...............................39
D ata A nalysis................................................... 39
Chapter Summary ..................................... .. ............. ......... 40









4 R E SU L T S ....................................................... 4 1

Objective One ............................................................................. ...................... ........42
O bjectiv e T w o ................................................................44
O objective T three ........................... ...................... .. .. .... ........ ........ 46
P a rt I ................................................................4 6
Part II ............... .. ..... ......................................................................... ..... 50
Objective Four ...... ......... ................ ........... 53
Demographics ............... .......... ..................... 56
C h ap ter S u m m ary ................................................................................................. 5 8

5 SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS ..........................60

O b j e ctiv e s .............. ...... ............................................................................................. 6 0
P ro c e d u re ......................................................................................................6 0
C o n c lu sio n s ........................................................................................................... 6 1
Objective One .......... ....................................... 61
Objective Two ........................................................................ .... ......... ........ ........ 63
Objective Three ...................................................................... ......... .................. 64
Objective Four ................................................................................................... 68
L im station s of th e Stu dy .............................................................................................7 0
Su m m ary of F in din g s ........................................................................................... 7 0
Recommendations........................................................74

APPENDIX

A SURVEY INSTRUM ENT.................................................. 76

B INFORM ED CONSENT FORM ................................................... 89

C IN FORM ED CON SEN T SCRIPT ....................................................................... 90

D SU R V E Y C O M M EN T S ....................................................................................... 91

R E F E R E N C E S ................................................................95

B IO G R A PH IC A L SK E T C H ....................................................................................... 99
















LIST OF TABLES


Table page

1 Examples of biological warfare during the past millennium .............. ................9

2 Crucial biological agents .......................................................... ............... 11

3 Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies ......................................................16

4 The Seven Cardinal Rules of Risk Communication...............................................28

5 Questions Rating the Level of Perceived Threat......................................................35

6 Attendance at a workshop/information session............................................ 43

7 Suspected agroterrorism on your operation, whom would you contact...................43

8 Have you made considerable investments (time, money, or effort).......................44

9 Reported Means: Importance of the Safeguard ...................................................45

10 Reported Means: Degree to which you Practice ............................................... 46

11 Frequency data: Importance of the Safeguard .....................................................47

12 Frequency data: Degree to which you Practice...................................................... 48

13 I think an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in the U. S.....................49

14 I think an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in Florida .....................50

15 I think an act of agroterrorism could happen on my operation .............................50

16 I feel prepared for an agroterrorism attack or biosecurity threat to my operation ...50

17 P art II D escriptive Statistics......................................................................... .. .... 52

18 Foot-and-Mouth/BSE influenced operation security decisions. ...........................53

19 Likeliness of contacting for biosecurity threat questions............... ... ...............54

20 Where would you look for published information? .............................................55









21 Preferred agroterrorism educational materials delivery method............................56

22 What is the size of your operation? .............................. ...................57

23 Operation Demographics...................... ........ ............................. 57















Abstract of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science

PERCEPTIONS OF FLORIDA BEEF CATTLE PRODUCERS ON PREPAREDNESS
FOR AN AGROTERRORISM ATTACK

By

Jodi Lynn DeGraw

August 2005

Chair: Carol J. Lehtola
Major Department: Agricultural and Biological Engineering

The purpose of this study was to identify Florida beef producers' current

knowledge levels of agroterrorism and simultaneously measure perceived levels of an

agroterrorism risk to the operation. The dependent variable for the study was the level of

preparedness practices on a Florida beef cattle operation for an agroterrorism attack. The

independent variable was the risk perceptions of the beef producer, whereby risk is the

intensity of the feeling to a potential attack. A correlational research design guided this

study with the aid of a descriptive survey. Of the 137 surveys distributed, 91 participants

returned the instrument for a response rate of 66.4%. This convenience sample consisted

of Florida beef cattle producers in attendance at the UF/IFAS Beef Cattle Short Course

held on May 4-6, 2005.

The survey data were analyzed and descriptive statistics were reported using

SPSS11.5 for WindowsTM. Results confirmed that the majority of participants felt at

risk for an agroterrorism attack and felt unprepared for an agroterrorism attack on their









farm. However, the respondents rated nearly all of the farm safeguards as being minor or

of no importance, rarely or never practicing these safeguards. The preferred contact

person concerning agroterrorism and biosecurity questions was the Florida Department of

Agriculture and Consumer Services. The preferred source of published agroterrorism

materials was the University of Florida. Yet, the following persons and agencies should

be prepared and knowledgeable about agroterrorism, as they were rated favorably by the

population as contact sources: the University of Florida-IFAS Cooperative Extension

Offices and Extension agents, law enforcement, veterinarians, and the World Wide Web.

The preferred method of delivery for agroterrorism educational materials was a weekend

training workshop.

As of January 1, 2004 there were 950,000 beef cows in Florida, ranking the state

12th in beef cows nationally and third for States east of the Mississippi Rover (Florida

Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, 2004).The study sample population

of beef producers consisted of a considerable portion of large operations, since 26.4%

(N=24) of the respondents reported over 1,000 animals during the peak time of

production. Moreover, these large operations account for a large portion of Florida's

economic value in the beef cattle industry, as 14.3% (N=13) of the population reported an

average annual gross receipt value of $1,000,000 or more.

Overall, this study provided insight into the development of educational materials

and programs to promote the use of agroterrorism security practices by Florida beef cattle

producers.














CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION

Following the September 11th terrorist attacks, the need for protecting our country

has taken on a new definition. "Minutes after two hijacked airliners crashed into the

World Trade Center on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, the Federal Aviation

Administration stopped all flights from U.S. airports. It marked the first time that air

traffic came to a halt nationwide" (Meadows, 2004, p. 21). Soon after this attack, the

United States was terrorized with letters containing anthrax spores in October 2001.

These acts of terrorism were unexpected and allowed the criminals responsible to remain

undetected. Just as acts of terrorism on buildings and through the mail can happen in any

place at any time, criminals can also taint the American food supply quickly without

being caught. The vulnerability of the food supply could allow terrorists access to cripple

the United States. "A major problem is the inability to identify criminal intent rapidly in

outbreaks of foodborne illness caused by common pathogens or animal-borne diseases"

(Lee, Harbison, & Draughon, 2003, p. 664).

One of the most effective ways to defend the United States against future terrorist

attacks is the use of preparation and defense plans. "Preparedness planning is critical to

assess our susceptibility to eliminate contamination and to devise the most effective

prevention strategies. Countries must do surveys of their particular water and food-

production systems to assess the risks of contamination" (Khan, Swerdlow & Juranek,

2001, p. 11). Deliberate contamination of the food supply has occurred in the past and

continues to be a threat today. For example, "in September, 1984, members of a religious









cult contaminated salad bars in The Dalles, Oregon, with Salmonella typhimurium; 751

people developed salmonellosis. This attack was reportedly a trial run for a more

extensive attack that was planned to disrupt local elections later that year" (Sobel, Khan,

& Swerdlow, 2002, p. 874). This is an example of Americans attacking fellow citizens,

thus solidifying the need to apply food security techniques and educational programs both

in small towns and globally.

Although many Americans purchase and consume food with confidence, there is

reason to be concerned for the safety of the food supply. Florida's geographic location

and extensive coastline increase the opportunity for terrorist accessibility. "Food and

water are quite satisfactory vectors for pathogens causing both morbidity and mortality in

target populations that are confined by geographic, industrial, or societal isolation" (Lee,

Harbison, & Draughon, 2003, p. 666). For example, the abundance and low cost of food

around the nation has lulled Americans into a comfort zone that could be ruined by a

biological terrorist attack. "Because of the importance of agriculture to American

economic, political, and social stability, addressing the bioterrorism threat to agriculture

has taken on a new urgency" (Leviten & Olexa, 2003, p. 64).

The State of Florida is at increased risk due to unique geographic features. Florida

has been referred to as a sentinel state because of the probability of a foreign animal or

plant disease or agroterrorism event affecting Florida first (Christy, Wang, Lehtola, &

Brown, 2004). "With 14 major seaports, 131 airports with public access, and 20

commercial airports, Florida's borders are truly porous and susceptible to entry" (Christy

et al., 2004, p. 8). As a result of Florida's accessibility, over 75 million tourists enter the

state annually, six million visiting from foreign countries (Christy et al., 2004).









The need to preserve the security of American food is an important matter that has

always been a priority, as destruction of crops, animals, or farmlands have historically

been used as weapons. Moreover, agricultural targets are considered "soft targets",

because of their low profile and accessibility for terrorists to attack with limited

navigability (Kohnen, 2000). The successful protection of the agricultural production

industry is a key aspect in maintaining the normal life Americans have become

accustomed to living. Maintaining a safe food supply is a necessity; "Contamination and

adulteration of food and water for selected target populations are ideal methods for

terrorists" (Lee, Harbison, & Draughon, 2003, p. 666).

In order to assess farm safety practices on Florida animal production operations,

DeGraw (2004) surveyed the population of County Extension Directors in Florida's 67

counties. "In response to the survey information, it was apparent that most counties in

Florida do not have a disaster preparedness plan or have the resources available to assist

public livestock owners in a time of devastation" (DeGraw, 2004, p. 2). The study

confirmed a need for county emergency management plans and a deficiency was noted in

the availability of information and training material for animal operators in order to

effectively manage animals and employees during disastrous situations (DeGraw, 2004).

A recently developed program, Florida State Agricultural Response Team (SART),

was developed to reduce disaster response deficiencies and "SART's mission is to

empower Floridians with training and resources to enhance animal and agricultural

disaster response" (Wang, Lehtola, & Brown, 2005, p. 2). In 2005, the SART program

provided training workshops to introduce the SART curriculum, which included lesson

plans, participant workbooks, and table-top simulations for the general subject areas.









"Preliminary module topics included the core SART topics of Incident Command

System, Aquaculture, Pets & Disasters, Plant Pathology, Livestock and Horses, Insect

and Arthropod Issues, Agroterrorism Threats in Florida, and Biosecurity" (Wang et al.

2005, p. 3). The Florida SART program is a progressively evolving plan for a response

to animal and agricultural emergencies and disasters (Wang et al., 2005).

Although agroterrorism against our food supply could potentially cause Americans

to go hungry, the economic impact would be catastrophic; "agriculture is the largest

sector of the United States economy, accounting for approximately one trillion dollars in

overall impact annually, with an export market of approximately $190 billion" (Lee,

Harbison, & Draughon, 2003, p. 664). The economic cost of a biological disease

outbreak would affect both agricultural production operations and United States exports,

resulting in lost revenue. "The deliberate introduction of a pathogen-fungus, bacterium,

virus, or insect pest-into U.S. livestock, poultry, or crops could cause a disease outbreak

that would drive food prices up, halt valuable exports, and ultimately cost taxpayers

billions of dollars in lost revenue and industry renewal costs" (Kohnen, 2000, p. 2).

Consumer confidence is an important consideration in order to sell products and

promote a social environment that successfully markets a food item. If consumers have

low confidence in United States beef products, then sales will decrease as Americans

choose to consume chicken, fish, and pork as an alternative. Another reason to be

concerned about a bioterrorist attack on agricultural production is the centralization and

related vulnerability of specific industries such as beef cattle. "Prior to the 1970s, most

cattle and livestock operations were small-scale and numerous. However, as agriculture

has become more industrial and corporate in nature, the number of specialized feedlots









have increased with lots of over 32,000 head of cattle increasing to 42 percent of all

feedlot capacity in this country" (Leviten & Olexa, 2003, p. 65).

Problem Statement

Why then should Americans, and specifically Floridians, be concerned about the

possibility of an agroterrorism attack? Is Florida at more risk for the introduction of a

foreign disease or contaminated food product? Based on the above concerns, the purpose

of this study was to identify beef producer's current knowledge levels of agroterrorism

and simultaneously measure perceived levels of bioterrorism risk to the Florida beef

cattle industry. The focus of the study will be to identify specific concerns and sensitive

areas of agroterrorism, in hopes of formulating strategies to alleviate confusion with

educational materials. The dependent variable for the study was the level of preparedness

for an agroterrorist attack. The independent variable was the risk perceptions of the beef

producer, whereby risk is the intensity of feeling a potential attack to their beef cattle

operation. This study involved large-scale beef operations and was designed to gain

insight and information from producers, and attempted to identify positive and negative

perceptions of bioagent protective actions. "We firmly believe that ignorance is not bliss,

and that heightened surveillance and risk management are the best extant defenses against

bioterrorism," (Lee, Harbison, & Draughon, 2003, p. 669).

Objectives

The objectives of this study were to

1. Identify the current levels of knowledge about agroterrorism held by Florida's beef
cattle producers,

2. Identify the level of preparedness against agroterrorism attackss,

3. Determine the risk perceptions of the beef producer to bioterrorism and
agroterrorism, and









4. With these data, determine producer's preferences for the delivery of agroterrorism
educational materials.

Definition of Terms

For the purpose of this study, the definition of food security is the ready availability

of nutritious, adequate, and safe food without having to resort to emergency food

supplies, scavenging, stealing, or other desperate strategies (Foxell, 2001).

Agroterrorism is defined as the intentional introduction of animal or plant pests or the

cultivation or production of pathogenic bacteria, fungi, parasites, protozoans, viruses, or

their toxic products for the purposes of causing poultry, livestock, crop, soil, or human

disease, poisoning, or death (Foxell, 2001). Agroterrorism can include spreading a

virulent disease among confined feed lot animals, poisoning civil or agricultural water

sources, the introduction of pests intended to destroy food crops, or the use of food-borne

pathogens to cause human disease. Bioterrorism is defined as an act of any person

knowingly or maliciously introducing disease-causing agents or organisms to an animal,

plant or human population, thus threatening food and water resources as well as human

and animal life (EDEN, 2003).














CHAPTER 2
REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE

The September 11th terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center had an impact on

attitudes toward United States security and increased the perceived risk of terrorism on

American society. For example, the United States government immediately altered

governmental structure and priorities to provide better protection. "The federal

government went into a crisis-management mode (Chung, 2002), a homeland security

organization was established to look at internal threats (Atchison, 2002; Fenner, 2002;

Huddy, Khatib, & Capelos, 2002), and federal funds were redirected into defense

spending and other relevant areas (Dawson & Guinnessey, 2002)" (as cited by Powell &

Self, 2004, p. 56).

The term risk is often associated with thoughts of hazards. Accordingly Pidgeon

defines risk perceptions as "people's beliefs, attitudes, judgments and feelings, as well as

the wider social or cultural values and dispositions that people adopt, towards hazards

and their benefits" (Bostrom, 2001, p. 102). However, most humans would vary their

behavior when risk for a situation increases. A result of the terrorist attacks was

emotional insecurities and a higher sense of personal risk felt by the American population

(Powell & Self, 2004).

One theory that attempts to explain this reaction is Taylor's 1983 cognitive

adaptation theory (Powell & Self, 2004). Cognitive adaptation occurs as people assess

situations and draw upon past psychological resources to aid in coping. Therefore, when









a hostile event occurs, this method predicts that an individual will engage in the

following three activities to help cope (Powell & Self, 2004):

1. A search for meaning in an event or experience

2. An attempt to gain mastery over the event or its consequences

3. The development of positive illusions to cope with the situation

Furthermore, a key variable in the above-described theory is the concept of

personalized risk. "Personalized risk is a cognitive component of the theory that can

influence whether an individual makes behavioral changes (adaptations) in response to a

new event or experience" (Powell & Self, 2004, p. 58). This additional idea, associated

with Taylor's 1983 theory, regards an individual's belief about the probability of personal

injury or property damage and an individual's perception of personal control.

This theoretical notion is the driving force of this research study. In the event of a

disaster on a Florida livestock operation, how prepared are farm operators and

employees? Is the level of preparedness related to high perceived risk or low perceived

risk? Is a low level of preparedness because of a lack of available information about

agroterrorism and bioagents, or confusion about how to prepare the farm? In conclusion,

"knowing the baseline knowledge, perceptions, and rates of high-risk behaviors in a

target group is essential for the development of effective educational interventions in

food safety" (Haapala & Probart, 2004, p. 72).

History of Biological Warfare

The threat of biological warfare is not a new concept for the United States. Man

has used poisoning agents for assassination purposes since the beginning of civilization,

not only against individual enemies, but also in times of war against armies

(Frischknecht, 2003).









Table 1. Examples of biological warfare during the past millennium (Frischknecht, 2003)
Year Event

1155 Emperor Barbarossa poisons water wells with human bodies, Tortona, Italy
1346 Mongols catapult bodies of plague victims over the city walls of Caffa,
Crimean Peninsula
1495 Spanish mix wine with blood of leprosy patients to sell to their French foes,
Naples, Italy
1650 Polish fire saliva from rabid dogs towards their enemies
1675 First deal between German and French forces not to use "poison bullets"
1763 British distribute blankets from smallpox patients to native Americans
1797 Napoleon floods the plains around Mantua, Italy to enhance the spread of
malaria
1863 Confederates sell clothing from yellow fever and smallpox patients to Union
troops, USA

Furthermore, in United States history, during World War I Imperial Germany

initiated a program of bioagricultural warfare by shipping anthrax and glanders infected

horses and mules from America to British and French armies. The animals were initially

infected with needles subsequently allowing infection to spread naturally through fecal

matter, coughing, or nasal discharge on the boat ride. Ultimately, more than 3,500 horses

were infected and rendered useless for wartime service (Foxell, 2001).

More research and experimentation were developed during World War II, in

particular the United States agricultural program focused on large-scale production and

weaponization of anti-crop agents (Cameron, Pate, & Vogel, 2001). By the time the

United States renounced all biological warfare in 1969, it had researched wheat stem rust,

rice blast, rye stem rust, foot-and-mouth, rinderpest, and brucellosis (Cameron, Pate, &

Vogel, 2001).

In recent history, the United States has been impacted by the intentional food

contamination of salad bars in 1984, and again in 1994 when an estimated 224,000

people in the United States were infected during an outbreak of Salmonella enteritidis.









The Salmonella enteritidis was caused by contamination of pasteurized liquid ice cream

that was transported in tanker trucks. The ice cream was then distributed nationally

resulting in one of the largest foodborne disease outbreaks in United States history

(Sobel, Khan, & Swerdlow, 2002).

Unfortunately, the world is "witnessing a renewed interest in biological warfare

and terrorism owing to several factors, including the discovery that Iraq has been

developing biological weapons (Zilinskas, 1997), several bestselling novels describing

biological attacks, and the anthrax letters after the terrorist attacks on September 11,

2001" (Frischknecht, 2003, p. S51). In order to understand the scope and power of

biological agents, Table 2 from the Centers for Disease Control lists the disease pathogen

and time period of abuse.

Accessibility to Biological Weapons

From the information about bioagents listed in Table 2, the history and abuse of

such pathogens illustrates the availability and ease with which countries can cause harm.

In fact, individuals and non-governmental groups can easily obtain access to dangerous

biological agents. The world-wide connection and accessibility of the Internet has

allowed communications and computer hackers a source for producing and creating

harmful products. "According to Dr. Glenn McGee, a biologist as well as a computer

security expert, insecurities in the Internet itself allow the possibility of "viral hacking",

wherein would-be agroterrorists no longer need "to find a tiny sample of smallpox [or

bioagricultural pathogens on the open, gray, or black markets], when, as hackers, they

can synthesize it from scratch on a $1,000 iMac connected to a $10,000 gene synthesizer"

(Foxell, 2001, p. 109).









Table 2. Crucial biological agents (Frischknecht, 2003)
Disease Pathogen Abused*

Category A (Major public health hazards)
Anthrax Bacillus antracis (B) First World War
Second World War
Soviet Union, 1979
Japan, 1995
USA 2001
Botulism Clostridium botulinum (T)

Hemorrhagic fever Marburg virus (V) Soviet bioweapons program
Ebola virus (V)
Arenavirus (V)
Plague Yersiniapestis (B) Fourteenth-century Europe
Second World War
Smallpox Variola major (V) 18th century N. America

Tularemia Francisella tularensis (B) Second World War

Category B (public health hazards)

Brucellosis Brucella (B)

Cholera Vibrio cholerae (B) Second World War
Encephalitis Alphaviruses (V) Second World War
Food poisoning Salmonella, .\ligell// (B) Second World War
USA, 1990s
Glanders Burkholderia mallei (B) First World War
Second World War
Psittacosis Chlamydiapsittaci (B)

Q fever Coxiella burnetti (B)

Typhus Rickettsiaprowazekii (B) Second World War

Various toxic Various bacteria Second World War
syndromes_
* Does not include time and place of production, but only indicates where agents were
applied and probably resulted in casualties, in war, in research or as a terror agent.
Category C includes emerging pathogens that are made more pathogenic by genetic
engineering, including hantavirus, Nipah virus, tick-borne encephalitis and hemorrhagic
fever viruses, yellow fever viruses and multidrug-resistant bacteria. B, bacterium; P,
parasite; T, toxin; V, virus.









The ability of physical resources and the technology to email or post genetic codes

and formulas through the Internet has allowed greater access to shared information at an

extremely fast rate. Throughout the world, people are educated with the techniques for

growing and genetically manipulating microorganisms; the Internet also provides an

instantaneous wealth of information. In fact, through 2001, explicit instructions were

posted online to guide an individual through the process of producing a weaponized form

of one of the agents of principal concern (Henderson, 2004).

Furthermore, the availability of bioagents that naturally occur in the environment

make the proliferation of biological weapons seem attractive for people with limited

resources. "Biological weapons sometimes are referred to as the poor man's nuclear

weapon because they can be produced inexpensively, they require less technical staff and

so little space or expensive equipment is needed" (Henderson, 2004, p. 50). Moreover, if

one were determined enough to produce biological agents, it has been estimated that a

functioning laboratory could be developed for no more than $250,000 (Henderson, 2004).

Another benefit of biological weapons is the combination of low cost of production with

the opportunity to infect large numbers of people over a large area. A 1970 study by the

World Health Organization (WHO) discovered that 50 kilograms of anthrax could result

in 200,000 casualties in a medium-sized city such as Boston. The United States Office of

Technology Assessment (OTA) has estimated that an attack with less than 100 kilograms

of aerosolized anthrax spores could cause as many as 3 million casualties, which

compares to the lethality of a thermonuclear weapon (Koblentz, 2003/04).

Although the government goes to great lengths to protect and monitor the use of

biotechnology, the positive aspect of educational research can also be used as a cover for









hostile purposes. The use of export controls has aided in the trade of national biological

weapons, yet it is not foolproof for all situations; "Although domestic access to

dangerous pathogens in the United States has been regulated since 1996, these pathogens

(with the exception of variola major) are available in nature and from a number of germ

banks around the world" (Koblentz, 2003/04, p. 94). Also, biological warfare agents

provide a terrorist or state both diverse and flexible options for destruction. It has been

noted in the literature that there are some thirty pathogens that have the physical and

biological capabilities for a mass-casualty weapon (Koblentz, 2003/04).

As stated above, there are thousands of laboratories world-wide with at least one of

the defined dangerous pathogens, and several select agents, such as anthrax, occur

naturally. To further complicate the search to identify and destroy biological warfare

factories, biological agents do not emit an identifying signal, as opposed to nuclear

materials, so there is little to distinguish the activities of a would-be bioterrorist in the

laboratory from those of the other scientists (Salerno et al., 2003) (Reppy, 2003).

Considering the multiple obstacles that the United States has to overcome to detect

another country, state, or organized group planning and producing a biological warfare

attack, it is apparent that the most effective protection is preparedness planning using

educational materials.

Dr. Rocco Casagrande, Director, Homeland Security Program Abt Associates,

presented information in relation to prevention of attacks on agriculture at the 2004

AgrowKnowledge Agroterrorism conference in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Dr. Casagrande

listed specific measures to prevent an attack on agriculture. "Create more rapid response

disease teams, routinely deploy idle teams for producer education, which includes 1)









recognition of important diseases, 2) Proper biosecurity practices, and 3) proper disease

reporting structure" (Casagrande, 2004). The Florida SART program is an up-and-

coming solution to Florida's agroterrorism educational gaps, satisfying Casagrande's

listed prevention measures.

Agroterrorism

As a result of recent terrorist activity and war with Iraq, agricultural bioterrorism

has received increased attention and discussion within academic, media, and government

circles. Recent studies argue that agricultural bioterrorism represents a new and dire

threat to United States national security (Cameron, Pate, & Vogel, 2001). The

agricultural industry is vital to Americans' stomachs as well as national economic

stability. Considering the economics, agriculture accounts for 13% of the United States

gross domestic product (Casagrande, 2002). The article Food as a Weapon describes the

economic importance of agriculture as "the largest sector of the United States economy,

accounting for approximately one trillion dollars in overall impact annually, with an

export market of approximately $190 billion" (Lee, Harbison, & Draughon, 2003, p.

664). Moreover, considering that United States agriculture supports the nation with a

safe, affordable, and abundant food supply, and accounts for 15% of all global

agricultural exports, agricultural terrorism is not simply killing animals and destroying

crops; it is a method of crippling an economy (Lee, Harbison, & Draughon, 2003).

Is this concern for the safety of the food supply a valid point? Do Americans need

to think about ways to preserve the security and longevity of the nation's food supply?

The discovery and confirmation of a cow in the state of Washington that had mad cow

disease, and was subsequently slaughtered and the meat shipped before being recalled

raised concern about current agricultural system safeguards. This impacted not only the









United States but also the world, as import bans were immediately enforced and the

United States system of food processing safety was under critical inspection. "In

Washington state, when a single cow- already butchered and shipped out to restaurants

and grocery stores- was diagnosed with mad-cow disease roughly 30 nations responded

with import bans or other sanctions" (Hegland, 2004, p. 114). The cow was later traced

to Canada, where it was born and raised; yet, the United States suffered the economic

consequences. The top foreign importer of beef from the United States, Japan, suspended

imports worth approximately $1.4 billion a year after the Washington state cow Bovine

Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) case (Takada, 2004).

Mad Cow Disease

Mad Cow Disease, known scientifically as Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy, or

BSE, is a chronic degenerative disease that destroys the central nervous system in cattle.

BSE has been infecting animals for many generations. It is believed that this disease

originated from the prion disease scrapie that infects sheep. BSE is a transmissible

spongiform encephalopathy (TSE). "TSE animal diseases found in the United States

include scrapie in sheep and goats, chronic wasting disease in deer and elk, transmissible

spongiform encephalopathy in mink, feline spongiform encephalopathy in cats, and in

humans kuru, both classic and variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease" (USDA Fact Sheets,

2004). The cause ofBSE has not yet been defined by scientists; but, the accepted theory

is that the agent is a prion, or an abnormal cellular protein (USDA Fact Sheets, 2004).









Table 3. Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies (Henley & Herrmann, 2004)
Species affected Prion Disease Transmissible to humans?

Mink Transmissible mink encephalopathy No

Sheep and Goats Scrapie Historically no; questionable in
newly discovered atypical
cases
Deer and Elk Chronic wasting disease Possible (under investigation)

Cattle and Bison Bovine spongiform encephalopathy Yes (variant CJD)

Humans Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease; variant Through contaminated medical
CJD, Gerstmann-Straussler- products, instruments, possibly
Scheinker Disease, Kuru, fatal blood
familial insomnia

One positive characteristic of this disease is that it is not spread through animal-to-

animal contact. Cattle become infected with BSE after consuming feed contaminated

with the infectious agent. The contamination of cattle feed occurs during the carcass

rendering process. "During rendering, carcasses from which all consumable parts had

been removed were milled and then decomposed in large vats by boiling at atmospheric

or higher pressures, producing an aqueous slurry of protein under a layer of fat (tallow)"

(Brown, Will, Bradley, Asher, & Detwiler, 2001, p. 6). The fat is then removed and the

slurry is used to produce meat and bone meal product, which is subsequently packaged as

animal feed. Therefore, the prions are passed onto cattle by feeding them prion-infected

meat and bone-meal produced from infected rendered animals.

After it was determined that cattle were being infected from consuming cattle feed

that contained meat and bone meal products, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration

(FDA) decided to take action. The solution was decided in 1997, and stated that

mammalian protein was no longer permitted in the manufacture of animal feed intended

for cattle and/or other ruminants (USDA Fact Sheets, 2004). Although the source of









contamination has been identified and control measures are being enforced, cattle are still

being diagnosed. The delay in diagnosis is attributed to the nature of BSE being a slow,

progressive, incurable disease of the central nervous system in cattle (Foxell, 2001).

Prior to the December 30, 2003 discovery of the BSE cow in Washington the prevention

measures that were followed to prevent BSE in the United States were (Henley &

Herrmann, 2004):

* Import restrictions on bovine-derived consumer products from high-risk BSE
countries.

* Prohibition of the use of ruminant derived meat and bone meal in cattle feed.

* A surveillance system for BSE that involved annual testing of between 5000 and
20,000 cattle slaughtered for human consumption (out of about 35 million cattle
slaughtered per year).

As a result of the BSE scare in December 2003, the USDA and FDA have added

more stringent and all-encompassing guidelines to protect our food supply. These

additional protective measures are (Henley & Herrmann, 2004):

* Defining high-risk materials banned for human consumption, including the entire
vertebral column.

* Banning the use of advanced meat recovery systems on vertebral columns. These
systems use brushes and air to blast soft tissue off of bone and led up to 30% of
hamburger sampled to be contaminated with central nervous system tissue.

* Proposing an expanded annual surveillance to include about 200,000 high-risk
cattle (sick, suspect, dead) and a random sample of 20,000 normal cattle over 30
months old.

Although the USDA and FDA are fighting for stronger food safeguards, are these

new guidelines enough? Should consumers be confident about the food purchased at

grocery stores and consumed in restaurants?

The detection of BSE can only be confirmed through postmortem analysis of brain

tissue. Therefore, the bovine has to be monitored while alive, subsequently exhibit signs









and symptoms of BSE, and then be isolated and killed in order to test the brain tissue.

The disease incubation period is within the range of 30 months to eight years, with only a

few rare exceptions in younger animals (USDA Fact Sheets, 2004). To cause even more

concern for the safety of the meat supply, BSE cannot be killed through cooking,

irradiation, or sterilization processes.

Human Risk

The United States enjoys a safe, affordable, and abundant food supply, but can this

source of food be destroyed by a terrorist attack? Do Americans have the right to be

concerned that the food supply could cause death? Norman Schaad of the USDA

Agricultural Research Service's Foreign Disease/Weed Science Research Unit believes

that plant pathogens would be an easier choice as a weapon of mass destruction, and they

would cause more damage to the food supply and the economy (Foxell, 2001). Victims

of an attack on the food supply would experience famine. Another long term impact of

induced food scarcity would be reduced nutritional levels, and subsequently the potential

for outbreaks of unrelated diseases due to damaged immune systems. Moreover, even a

small attack on American farms would result in lowered food confidence and decline in

the purchase of that food product. "Even a bungled agroterrorist livestock disease-based

stratagem that affected only a handful of farm animals- a probable outcome if the

perpetrators were unfamiliar with agricultural pathogens or modem farming practices-

would produce a transient climate of fear and panic among food buyers" (Foxell, 2001, p.

109).

An act of agroterrorism could be the result of many different motives. "Terrorists'

motives vary widely. The perpetrator of an agroterrorist attack might be seeking revenge

against a farmer" (Kohnen, 2000, p. 11). Terrorists may not always be foreign groups









preying on United States agriculture; they could also be a disgruntled employee seeking

revenge by infecting or destroying animals on the farm. Or, a terrorist may simply be

driven to attack, determined to create panic by causing a food scare. The USDA

considers the two most important motivations for agroterrorism to be potential for profit

by damaging United States exports or food prices and destruction of animal or plants

from anti-GMO (genetically modified organisms) activists (Kohnen, 2000).

Unfortunately, agroterrorism is "a multidimensional threat, involving a wide range of

motives and perpetrators, and encompassing a wide range of actions, from single acts of

sabotage to strategic wartime programs" (Kohnen, 2000, p. 12).

John Shutske, farm safety and health specialist with the University of Minnesota

Extension, has three general recommendations for farm managers to protect their

operations from terrorism. First, know who you are hiring, and consider a formal process

to screen workers and check backgrounds and references. Make sure that workers are

trained so that they know what to do in an emergency (Kurtz, 2002). Second, review all

potential hazards in your operation (Kurtz, 2002). "Changes to farmstead security don't

have to be costly. Simply closing and locking gates where there are multiple access

driveways on and off a farmstead can dramatically improve security" (Kurtz, 2002, p.2).

Third, plan and communicate with people inside and outside your operation, including

your family, employees, suppliers, and your customers (Kurtz, 2002). Communication

and preparation with employees, farm visitors, and family members is essential for the

prevention of a domestic agroterrorism attack by a trusted farm employee or foreign

perpetrator.









The production of grains, cereals, and livestock products in the United States is

open and vulnerable for a potential terrorist attack. Feedlots for livestock are large and

centrally located in the Mid-west, making it easier for terrorists to locate and infect large

numbers of animals at once. Furthermore, the grain and cereal crops are geographically

located in the central United States in an area known as the "Corn Belt." Joseph W.

Foxwell describes 10 factors that contribute to our nation's vulnerability in his paper,

"Current Trends in Agroterrorism (Antilivestock, Anticrop, and Antisoil Bioagricultural

Terrorism) and Their Potential Impact on Food Security".

The first point of vulnerability is the concentration of the livestock industry: cattle

feeding in Kansas; hogs in North Carolina, Nebraska, and Iowa; and poultry in Virginia,

Georgia, Arkansas, Pennsylvania, and Maryland's Eastern shore district. It is common

knowledge that cattle, hogs, and poultry are produced in specific geographic areas of the

nation, "over 70% of U.S. beef cattle are currently produced within the locus of a 200-

mile circle" (Foxell, 2001, p. 110).

Also, the large "Corn Belt" ranges from Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, and parts of Kansas

to Missouri, Nebraska, South Dakota, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin. A terrorist could

destroy a crop of corn, soybeans, or wheat by targeting a particular state. However, it

would be more difficult to destroy an entire plant crop, versus the ease of livestock

transmission of disease between animals.

Secondly, the United States food business is moving toward centralized ownership

and larger individual farms. Foxell predicts that within the next five years the American

beef industry will be organized and aggregated to the degree that the thirty leading cattle

feeding corporations will generate 50% of all beef products (Foxell, 2001). Major









companies are merging together to form dominant powers, therefore making themselves

larger and more accessible targets.

Third, the production of livestock has turned to a method of dense housing.

Animals are often crowded together on small lots, sharing feeding and watering troughs,

and forcing more contact with other animals. These intensive proximity husbandry

practices have increased the vulnerability to the spread of infectious diseases (Foxell,

2001). Furthermore, the densely packed confinement areas provide increased stress and

strain on the cattle. The definition of these facilities is a Concentrated Animal Feeding

Operation (CAFO). The General Accounting Office estimates that there are 450,000

such CAFOs nationwide (Foxell, 2001). The large facilities include dairy and beef cattle

feedlots, hogs and poultry houses. Unfortunately, one trend that has developed as a result

of CAFOs is lowered resistance to infectious diseases and an over-use of antibiotic drugs

to control outbreaks. This trend has rippling consequences, potentially impacting the

consumer, who may be exposed to antibiotics within the meat and milk products and

slowly become antibiotic resistant as a result.

The fourth factor of vulnerability is the increased activity of international air travel.

Americans are conveniently able to travel across the globe and then return home with the

possibility of inadvertently bringing a foreign illness or pest. American crops and

animals no longer enjoy the luxury of isolation that existed before the time of air travel.

In addition, Foxell states that the fifth area of concern to agriculture is the reliance on

pesticides and herbicides to control insects and weeds (Foxell, 2001). Finally, the

remaining five factors concentrate on the vulnerability of crop, hybrid seeds, soil, and the

variety of pathogenic agents that are foreign to animals and crops.









When all the above areas of concern are considered collectively, a terrorist has the

capability to cause damage to the United States agriculture industry with ease. However,

the strategy that would cause the most damage to the United States would be a focus on

mass disruption, with the purpose to destroy the nation's infrastructure, rather than

causing mass casualty. The nation as a whole should be prepared for extensive financial

losses, economic crisis, and agricultural quarantine that would be the result of a

successful agroterrorism attack on the Unites States.

Economic Impact

A successful agroterrorism attack on the United States may not harm the public

through death, but it would be a substantial trade and economic issue (Foxell, 2001).

United States agriculture is important to the global economy as well as the national

economy. The United States accounts for 15% of all global agricultural exports, and in

1998 the United States produced nearly half of the worlds' soybeans, more than 40% of

its corn, 20% of its cotton, 12% of its wheat, and 16% of its meat (Peters, 2003). Given

the diversity of the agriculture industry, potential targets of agricultural bioterrorism

range from field crops to farm animals; food items in transportation and storage facilities;

to processing plants. Henry Parker, a researcher at the United States Department of

Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS) states that "America is

exceedingly vulnerable to agricultural bioterrorism. The reasons for this situation are

numerous. To begin, there is limited appreciation for the economic and social

importance of agriculture in the industrialized world. Abundant, affordable, and safe

food supplies are largely taken for granted" (Peters, 2003, p. 23). Indeed, it is hard for

Americans to imagine a life without the convenience of safe and affordable food at every

nearby grocery store and neighborhood restaurant.









Therefore, even though RAND (a nonprofit research organization) officials

estimate that no major United States city has more then a seven-day supply of food, the

devastation of an agroterrorism attack would soon spread from pain in United States

stomachs to the United States economy (Peters, 2003). Most importantly would be the

loss of international trade markets. Members of the World Trade Organization (WTO)

have the power to ban imports of plant or animal materials that may introduce exotic

diseases into their territories (Wheelis, Casagrande, & Madden, 2002).

A recent example of such economic devastation from a disease was the foot-and-

mouth disease outbreak in the United Kingdom. Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) is a

highly contagious viral infection that can rapidly infect cattle. According to Parker, more

than 70 different strains of FMD exist, and it is the most infectious virus known, capable

of spreading in wind-driven aerosol form more than 170 miles from its source (Peters,

2003). Moreover, it can be carried on clothes, hay, transportation vehicles, and even in

nasal passages.

Taiwan's livestock industry has been suffering, as a result of a FMD outbreak,

since 1997. In March of that year, the disease was confirmed in pigs and subsequently

spread throughout the island within six weeks, shutting down pork exports and ultimately

causing the slaughter of more then 8 million hogs (Peters, 2003). Parker states that the

origin of the disease was reportedly traced back to a pig from China, suspected of being

deliberately introduced into Taiwan, costing the nation an estimated $19 billion (Peters,

2003). Furthermore, the United Kingdom suffered from a FMD outbreak in 2001, where

4 million cattle were depopulated to contain the disease and the nation has suffered with a









loss of 30 billon pounds (US $48 billion), affecting both agriculture and tourism (Gewin,

2003).

The agricultural commodities in Florida are vital to the economic stability of the

state. "Florida's 44,000 farmers grow more than 280 different crops on a commercial

scale. Florida's agriculture and natural resources industries have an economic impact on

our State economy estimated at more than $62 billion annually" (Florida Department of

Agriculture and Consumer Services, 2004, p. 1). The reported Florida cash receipt for

cattle and calves in 2002 was $333,413,000 (Florida Department of Agriculture and

Consumer Services, 2004). As of January 1, 2004 there were 950,000 beef cows in

Florida, ranking the state 12th in beef cows nationally and third for States east of the

Mississippi River (Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, 2004). Of

the 15,800 beef cow operations in Florida, 80% have less than 50 head of cows, but of the

top five beef producing counties, in several cases one or two owners/corporations may

control the bulk of the cattle in that county (Dr. M. Hersom, University of Florida,

Assistant Professor and Extension Beef Cattle Specialist, personal communication, July

8, 2005).

Risk Perceptions

Throughout history, humans have felt and lived with the feeling of risk. This

ability to sense and avoid harmful conditions is necessary for the survival of all living

organisms. Therefore, in recent decades risk assessment has been utilized to develop a

safer and healthier environment per public demand. However, determining what the

public feels is the highest risk factor can be difficult to pinpoint. Furthermore, experts

may feel concern for a certain issue, whereas the public body may not perceive the same

level of urgency. For example, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has spent a









bulk of it's budget in past years for hazardous waste because the public believes that the

cleanup of Superfund sites is the most serious threat to the country, but indoor air

pollution is considered a more extreme health risk by experts (Slovic, 2001).

Unfortunately, there is a difference of opinion between the experts and layperson, so who

deserves the credit for being correct?

Experts are crowned with the title of being objective, wise, and rational when

assessing risk; they examine the real risk. On the other hand, the public is viewed as

relying on perceptions of risk; these opinions are subjective, hypothetical, emotional,

foolish, and irrational (Slovic, 2001). The controversy between these conflicting views

has resulted in the need for a better understanding and definition of risk. The recent

development of chemical and nuclear technologies has been joined with the potential to

cause catastrophic damage to the earth and the life forms that exist on it. The advanced

technologies and potential hazards are difficult for the common citizen to understand;

therefore, the intellectual discipline of risk assessment was designed to aid in identifying,

characterizing, and quantifying risk (Slovic, 1987).

What is risk? Slovic (2001) defines risk as "the chance of injury, damage, or loss."

Moreover, "the probabilities and consequences of adverse events are assumed to be

produced by physical and natural processes in ways that can be objectively quantified by

risk assessment" (Slovic, 2001, p. 3). Social science analysis has determined that risk is

subjective, proclaiming that humans have invented risk to help them understand and cope

with the uncertainties in life (Slovic, 2001). The public has an inherently broader

foundation of risk, incorporating the complexities of dread, uncertainty, risk to future

generations, catastrophic potential, equity, controllability, and past personal experiences,









that factor into the risk equation (Slovic, 2001). Slovic (1987) summarizes this clash of

risk perception between the lay person and the expert as follows:

Perhaps the most important message from this research is that there is wisdom as
well as error in public attitudes and perceptions. Lay people sometimes lack certain
information about hazards. However, their basic conceptualization of risk is much
richer than that of experts and reflects legitimate concerns that are typically omitted
from expert risk analysis. As a result, risk communication and risk management
efforts are destined to fail unless they are structured as a two-way process. Each
side, expert and public, has something valid to contribute. Each side must respect
the insights and intelligence of the other. (p. 285)

Therefore, when considering the best method of communicating risk, it is important

to control the definition of risk. Whoever, whether the public, experts, or government,

defines the risk, will take control of the safest or best way to solve the problem at hand.

"Defining risk is thus an exercise in power" (Slovic, 2001, p. 6).

So, why in this modern world of technology and advanced science are people more

concerned about risk? As a whole, the public has become healthier and is living longer

and stronger lives with the aid of medication and drug enhancements. Slovic (1994), has

stated several hypotheses about factors that are contributing to perceptions of increased

risk:

1. A greater ability to detect minute levels of toxic substances. The public can detect
parts per billon of chemicals in water or air, yet we do not understand the health
implications of this knowledge.

2. An increased reliance on new technologies that can have serious consequences if
something goes wrong. Most of society lacks an understanding of technology and
are suspicious in accepting its risks.

3. Society has experienced a number of catastrophic mishaps, such as the Challenger,
Chernobyl, and Columbia. The intense media coverage of the "failures" of these
supposed "fail-safe" systems increases doubt.

4. The extreme amount of litigation over risk problems, which highlights to the public
attention to the problems, which then has experts at odds over the issue, and
ultimately a loss of credibility on all sides.









5. The benefits of technology are often taken for granted. When the public fails to
perceive any striking benefit from an activity, they become intolerant of any risk,
regardless of the level.

6. The public is told that they have the ability to control elements of risk. For
example: seatbelt use, diet control, exercise, or abstaining from smoking. This may
lead to frustration over risks that cannot be self-controlled: pollution, pesticides,
food contaminants or additives.

7. Psychological studies indicate that when people are wealthier, and have more to
lose, they become more cautious in decision making.

8. The nature of today's risks. There is a greater potential for catastrophe due to
societal complexities, potency, and technological advances.

When the above factors are considered as a whole, it is apparent the complexity of

communicating risk levels to the public and how daunting a task risk communicators

have when trying to alleviate panic as a risky situation becomes threatening.

Furthermore, hazards that are seen as catastrophic also feel uncontrollable and

involuntary (Slovic, 1994). Slovic (1994) has investigated these risk relationships

through a factor analysis. Factor 1 is labeled as "Dread Risk" and is perceived as lack of

control, dread, catastrophic potential, and fatal consequences. "The further toward

'Dread Risk' that a hazard appears in the space, the higher its perceived risk, the more

people want to see its current risks reduced, and the more people want to see strict

regulation employed to achieve the desired reduction in risk" (Slovic, 1994, p. 67).

Overall, the perception of risk is a reality which impacts the lay person's way of life.

Risk Communication

During the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States all eyes were pinned to

news stations on television to learn how to deal with the panicked feelings resulting from

the acts of terrorism. It was in these moments that the American public needed to hear

risk communication to address specific questions and concerns. "There was widespread









uncertainty, fear, and anxiety about terrorism, but also about toxic dust. Initial attempts

by the government failed to reassure the public about the dust's safety" (Aakko, 2004, p.

25). Traditionally, when officials would address public concerns, the communication

would flow one-way, more in disseminating a message than addressing specific, diverse

questions. To properly benefit from active risk communication, it is a two-way process,

with active participation from both sender and audience. See Table 4 for the rules of risk

communication.

Table 4. The Seven Cardinal Rules of Risk Communication (Aakko, 2004)
1. Accept and involve the public as a legitimate partner
2. Plan carefully and evaluate your efforts
3. Listen to the public's specific concerns
4. Be honest, frank, and open
5. Coordinate and collaborate with other credible sources
6. Meet the needs of the media
7. Speak clearly and with compassion

Successful risk communication incorporates the rules of Table 4 and the risk

perceptions of the affected audience. Risk perceptions have a direct impact on how

citizens respond to risk communication and risk management activities (Frewer, 2004).

During the 1970's the focus of communication efforts was on changing public views of

risk, with an emphasis placed on communication of technology acceptance. However,

recently the focus of risk communication shifted toward restoring public trust in risk

management, with an emphasis on more extensive public consultation and participation

management (Frewer, 2004).

The original attempts at risk communication were not freely accepted, a result of

the effort to change the public's view of risk to equal the views of experts of particular

hazards; "this process has been described by Hilgartner 1990 as the 'deficit model,'

which assumed that the public are in some way deficient in their understanding of risk,









and indeed other areas of science" (Frewer, 2004, p. 392). As a result of the "deficit

model" the public lost trust in risk communication methods and lost confidence in risk

management practices. However, the distrust was noted by risk communicators and

currently a new method of risk management is in effect. Ultimately, there has been a

cultural shift away from top-down communication practices to more consultative and

inclusive decision making-processes; risk communication is re-orienting towards a

citizen focus (Frewer, 2004).

Another factor in successful risk communication is trust. A trusting relationship

between the public and the expert is necessary in developing successful and effective risk

management practices. Furthermore, trust is particularly important when people feel

little personal control over exposure to potential hazards. Institutions and organizations

need to agree on methods to maintain public confidence in risk management practices.

Jenson and Sandoe 2002 have noted a continued decline in public food safety confidence

despite the new food safety institutions and the European Food Safety Authority (Frewer,

2004). They argue that "this is because communications about food safety issues that are

based on scientific risk assessments do not reassure the public" (Frewer, 2004, p. 393).

Lay people interpret scientific information and facts differently depending on personal

perceptions. To better facilitate risk analysis and communication, there needs to be a

greater understanding of individual differences in perceptions and information needs

between the public and the risk communicator (Frewer, 2004).

Programs that communicate agroterrorism risk have been developed in several

states including Florida and Minnesota. The Florida State Agricultural Response Team

(SART) program held the first annual training events in Kissimmee, Belle Glade and









Tallahassee, Florida in spring 2005 in order publicize SART's missions and goals (Wang

et al., 2005). Likewise, the University of Minnesota Extension Service has organized

four regional workshops to educate about the intentional and unintentional threats that

can affect agriculture (University of Minnesota Extension Service, 2005). John Shutske,

coordinator for the event, feels that "The tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001 have made

agricultural producers more aware of the need to protect their operations and the health of

the public. Terroristic introduction of disease, contamination or other damaging agents

has become a concern" (Kurtz, 2002, p. 1). Another state that has acknowledged the

need to communicate and educate the public is Iowa. Iowa State University has teamed

up with the Center for Food Security and Public Health to print CD's and hold workshops

titled, "Bioterrorism Awareness Education" and "Agroterrorism Awareness Education"

(Iowa State University, 2004).

Chapter Summary

This chapter attempted to review the current published literature concerning

biological agents, terrorism, agroterrorism, risk perceptions, and risk communication.

The motivation for agroterrorism research is a direct result from the September 11th

terrorist attacks on the United States, and the potential for an attack on America's food

supply. The theoretical framework that supports this study is Taylor's 1983 cognitive

adaptation theory that attempts to explain the behavioral changes as a coping response to

a catastrophic event. In addition, Slovic (2001) defines risk as the chance of injury,

damage, or loss. Unfortunately, risk is subjective. To achieve successful risk

communication, the public's perception of risk should be defined in order to design the

most applicable educational program to increase terrorism preparedness and safety

practices.














CHAPTER 3
METHODOLOGY

The purpose of this study was to identify beef producer's current knowledge levels

of agroterrorism and simultaneously measure perceived levels of agroterrorism risk to the

operation. This research study utilized a descriptive survey. The targeted research

population was Florida beef cattle producers. The survey sampled Florida beef cattle

producers that attended the UF-IFAS Beef Cattle Short Course, thus enabling conclusions

to be drawn on the targeted research population.

The objectives of this study were to

1. Identify the current levels of knowledge about agroterrorism held by Florida beef
producers,

2. Identify the level of preparedness against agroterrorism attackss,

3. Determine the risk perceptions of the beef cattle producer to bioterrorism and
agroterrorism, and

4. With this data, determine producer's preferences for the delivery of agroterrorism
education materials.

The questionnaire consisted of 55 research-developed questions, ranging from

'What is the estimated size of your operation?' to 'If you feel your operation is at risk to

terrorist activity, which aspects do you think are at greatest risk'? The descriptive

questionnaire was reviewed by a panel of experts, which included the researcher's

advisory committee and a topic specialist. It was pilot tested and revised before being

administrated to the sample population. The survey instrument is included in Appendix

A.









Research Design

The research design for this study utilized a descriptive questionnaire administered

to a population of Florida beef producers. This convenience-sample of participants was

selected based on the study objectives and attendance at the University of Florida Beef

Cattle Short Course (BCSC). The principle investigator of this study distributed the

questionnaire booklets with the assistance of Elizabeth Wang. At the beginning of the

BCSC, per instructions from the BCSC Conference Director, during the check-in time of

the conference, the researcher stood at the front desk and approached participants,

discussed the survey purpose and requested their participation. Permission to conduct

this study was granted from the University of Florida Institutional Review Board (IRB).

The UF IRB office ensured that the rights and welfare of the human subjects involved in

this study were protected. IRB approved the survey instrument and informed consent

script on March 28, 2005 (see Appendices B and C).

Singly approaching participants proved to be difficult, time consuming, and too

demanding for one person to reach out to every beef producer in attendance at the BCSC.

Therefore, the principle investigator enlisted the assistance of Mrs. Wang to assist with

the distribution of questionnaires to participants in the auditorium before the first speaker

on May 6, 2005. Furthermore, the researcher made an announcement at the podium

about the purpose of the survey and requested that it be completed and returned before

the end of the day.

The goal of the researcher administering the survey in person was to increase the

response rate by having greater influence and contact with the population being studied.









Population

In order to meet the objectives of the study, the defined population was Florida beef

cattle producers. Each participant needed to have produced beef cattle or be currently in

production. The targeted population was surveyed with a sample from participants

attending the 54th Annual Beef Cattle Short Course (BCSC). In conversation with Dr.

Tim Marshall (personal communication, July 11, 2005), University of Florida Professor

of Beef Cattle Management and Program Committee member for the 2005 BCSC, he felt

that the sample population of BCSC participants for this study was a representative

sample of Florida beef cattle producers. Dr. Marshall stated that most beef cattle

producers that attend the BCSC work large production operations (7-8 of the largest

ranches in Florida attend) or smaller herds (around 1,000 cows). Florida is unique in that

the state has more 500 herd cows than any other state, yet Florida is also home to Desert

Ranch which boasts 40,000 brood cows (Dr. Tim Marshall, personal communication,

July 11, 2005).

The BCSC was hosted and coordinated by the University of Florida IFAS

Cooperative Extension Service. The topic areas highlighted at the 54h Annual BCSC

included, Maintaining Quality Production in a Dynamic Market Place; Management

Factors Affecting Quality in the Herd; Practical Ranch Issues Facing Cattlemen Today;

and Grass Fertilizer, and Management: Grazing Issues Affecting the Florida Cow Herd.

The BCSC early registration fee was $85.00 and the regular registration fee was $110.00.

The registration fee included refreshment breaks, an exhibitor's reception, Thursday's

luncheon, one Cattlemen's Steak-out ticket, and a proceedings. (University of Florida

IFAS Extension, 2005)









Data Collection

The survey instrument was pilot tested March 15, 2005 at an Alachua County

Cattlemen's Association Meeting in Newberry, Florida. As a result of the pilot test, the

questionnaire was revised and finalized for use. Formatting changes included re-ordering

the questions within the instrument, the addition of the answer choice Not Applicable for

questions 20-27, an increase of demographic questions and the inclusion of question

number 55 concerning preferred workshop delivery method. In the pilot study, the

questionnaire was distributed and administered to a sample (N=51) with verbal

instructions for the instrument and reason for the study. The response rate for the pilot

was 84% (N=43).

Data for this study was collected at the University of Florida IFAS Extension Beef

Cattle Short Course, May 4-6, 2005. The researcher began to distribute questionnaires on

May 4 and continued to collect data until the conclusion of the conference on May 6. Of

the 137 distributed questionnaires, 91 useable responses were returned to the researcher,

for a response rate of 66.4%.

Instrumentation

The survey was developed with the aid of researchers and was adapted from a

previously administered questionnaire by the Extension Disaster Education Network

Homeland Security Survey of Agriculture and Horticulture Producers (EDEN, 2003).

Although the EDEN survey was used as a model, much of this instrument was not

applicable for this study population. Therefore, the questionnaire used for this study was

created from an intensive literature review and review from a panel of experts. The

survey consisted of 55 items and was reviewed by a panel of experts, which included the

advisory committee and a topic specialist, for face and construct validity. The first page









of the instrument described the purpose of the study and defined the terms agroterrorism

and bioterrorism. This was included to increase understanding of the study, with the aim

of increasing the response rate. Part I of the survey was designed to measure perceptions

about agroterrorism. It consisted of four Likert-type scale questions (see Appendix A),

answers ranging from 5-Strongly agree; 4-Agree; 3-Neither Agree nor Disagree; 2-

Disagree; and 1-Strongly Disagree. This section was designed to determine the risk

perceptions of beef producers related to the chance of an agroterrorism attack in 1) the

United States, 2) Florida, and 3) their operation. Their overall perception toward

agroterrorism preparation was also considered.

The next section, Part II, was titled "Rate the Level of Perceived Threat".

Questions 5-16 were again modeled after Likert-type scales, 5-Considerable threat; 4-

Much threat; 3-Some threat; 2-Little threat; and 1-None. Participants were instructed to

circle the number that best reflected the level of perceived threat they felt to their

operation from risk to terrorist activity. See Table 5 for examples of questions.

Table 5. Questions Rating the Level of Perceived Threat
Operation Risk Scale
Water Contamination Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None
Feed Contamination Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None
Animal Death Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None
Animal Disease Outbreak Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None
Chemical Contamination Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None
Loss of Income Due to Market Losses Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None
Tampering with Facilities Considerable 5 4 3 2 1 None

Part III of the instrument, titled "Gaining Knowledge about Agroterrorism",

included three questions. One question asked respondents about their attendance at

agroterrorism workshops, and the answer options were: Yes, at least once; More than

once; and No. The next question aimed to determine which three persons beef producers









would contact for advice during a breech of security on their farm. Respondents were

asked to select their top three contacts from a list of ten choices: Veterinarian, Extension

Agent, Florida Dept. of Agriculture, Another livestock producer, Law enforcement,

USDA, Producer Association, State or county Emergency Management, Don't know, or

Other (please specify). The final question in Part III inquired about biosecurity

investments (time, money, or effort) made to the operation in reference to the September

11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Respondents had five answer options: Yes, before September

11, 2001; Yes, before and after September 11, 2001; Yes, after September 11, 2001; No;

and Don't know.

Part IV of the instrument aimed to measure agroterrorism preparedness of the beef

producer. Questions 20-27 were designed using a Likert-type scale to measure both

feelings of importance toward livestock protection and how this relates to the degree of

practice on the farm. Respondents were instructed to read each question and then

respond twice, with two different scales. The first scale, evaluating the importance of

each operation safeguard, was: 4-Major importance; 3-Moderate importance; 2-Minor

importance; and 1-No importance. Then the same questions (20-27) had an additional

scale, evaluating the degree to which beef producers practice each safety measure, and

consisted of: 4-Always practice; 3-Moderate practice; 2-Rarely practice; 1-Never

practice. The scale on the right also had the option for respondents to circle Not

Applicable. Not Applicable as an answer choice was provided for beef producers who

did not have a particular scenario apply to their operation. For example, if a beef

producer does not hire employees, but instead is family owned and operated, then that









respondent would circle NA for question 25 regarding conducting a background check on

potential hires.

The next three questions related to the access and availability of agroterrorism

educational materials. Question 28 inquired about the participants' accessibility to

educational materials that can specifically answer agricultural biosecurity questions.

Respondents answered either yes, no or don't know. However, this question had an

optional second part. If respondents answered yes, meaning that they did have access to

educational materials, they were asked to supply the name of the material source in the

blank space below the question. The write-in portion of this question, although optional,

was encouraged in order to determine current available materials. Next, participants were

questioned on the likeliness of contacting a particular source to learn more about

agroterrorism or livestock specific biosecurity threats. This question was designed using

a Likert-type scale, 5-Very likely; 4-Fairly likely; 3-Likely; 2-Unlikely; 1-Very unlikely.

The contact question choices varied from Veterinarian, Extension agent, Law

Enforcement, to Don't know who I would contact.

The next section was designed to more specifically determine where beef producers

seek out published information about biosecurity. Questions 39-45 also utilized the

Likert-type scale mentioned above, 5-Very likely; 4-Fairly likely; 3-Likely; 2-Unlikely;

1-Very unlikely. The final question before the demographics section referred to the Foot-

and -Mouth Outbreak in England and the December 2003 discovery of a BSE cow in the

U.S. This question (46) was included to measure the influence of these events on beef

producers' decisions towards improving security on their operation. The scale for this









question was: 5-Strongly influenced; 4-Influenced; 3-Neither; 2-Minimal influence; 1-No

influence.

The final portion of the instrument was Part V, which included demographic

questions. A dichotomous choice question of gender was included to determine the

percentage of male to female respondents (81.3% male, 98.9% total). Additional

demographic questions included inquiries about length of time in the livestock business,

number of cattle on the production facility, size of the operation, and average annual

gross receipts value, all of which offered answers with range answers, which respondents

were asked to reply with the one choice that best matched their situation.

Also, respondents were to circle the type of livestock production they operate, beef

or dairy, or both. Respondents were also asked if their role(s) in the livestock production

operation were 1) a landlord only; 2) an operator on land they owned; 3) an operator on

rented land; 4) and/or other (where they would specify). With this particular question,

respondents were encouraged to circle all scenarios that applied to them. In order to

determine the level of technology and the future potential to apply biosecurity measures,

the instrument inquired about the presence of a record keeping system on the livestock

operation. Lastly, in accordance with the fourth study objective, the final question aimed

to determine the preferred delivery method of agroterrorism educational materials if the

Extension Service were to provide the service. Livestock producers were given the

following answer choices, and instructed to select their top choice: Weekend Training

Workshop; Read printed materials at your own pace; Take classes through the World

Wide Web; and One-on-One contact with an Extension Agent.









Variables

The main independent variable in this study was risk perception. This is a

subjective feeling from each farm operator, which reflects on circumstances, financial

security, perceptions about the September 11th terrorist attack, and other miscellaneous

variables. The dependent variable was the level of preparedness against bioagents. The

level of preparedness was measured from responses to the survey. To measure this, level

of preparedness was related to accessible educational materials, contact with an extension

agents, attendance at a safety workshop, the practice of employee education training, and

the identification of potential agroterrorism targets. The level and degree of protection

against bioagents entering the farm operation was directly related to attitude toward

bioterrorism on the farm. The September 11th attacks on America had a profound impact

on risk perceptions and emotional stress; "American citizens, even those not directly

affected by the attack, suffered from psychological and emotional problems that included

an increased sense of vulnerability and personal risk" (Powell & Self, 2004, p. 57).

Data Analysis

The data from the survey was statistically analyzed using SPSS 11.5 for

WindowsTM. The objectives of the study called for computation of descriptive statistics,

means, frequencies, and percentages. In order to analyze the data, the Likert-type scales

were treated as ordinal data. To determine the reliability of the instrument, post hoc

analysis was reported with Cronbach's Alpha coefficients ranging from 0.45 to 0.92.

From the collected survey information suggestions were provided and solutions presented

to improve upon current methods of relaying agroterrorism information. Kohnen (2000)

states, "a livestock producer can reduce the epidemiological risk by increasing

biosecurity measures at his facilities" (p. 22). This supports the notion that protection is









the number one defense when preventing the spread of a disease that could cause a

decrease in consumer confidence and economic repercussions for Florida livestock

producers. Furthermore, "a Biosecurity Training Program could entail a wide variety of

activities such as educational mailings, presentations at local Farm Bureau meetings, and

workshops at state and local levels" (Kohnen, 2000, p. 23).

Chapter Summary

This chapter described the methods used to address and answer the objectives of

this study. The methodology determined for this research design took into account the

purpose and objectives, and this chapter discussed the determined population, sample,

instrumentation, data collection, variables and data analysis.

The design of this study was identified as correlational research utilizing a

descriptive survey (Irani, 2004). The survey instrument was reviewed by a panel of

experts, which included the advisory committee and a topic specialist, and was pilot

tested for face and construct validity. Furthermore, the direct administration of the

instrument was chosen to increase the response rate. The independent variable in this

study was agroterrorism risk perceptions. This was defined as the range of feeling, high

risk to minimal risk, applied to different aspects of the livestock operation. The

dependent variable was the level of preparedness against bioagents and an agroterrorism

attack.














CHAPTER 4
RESULTS

The purpose of this study was to identify beef producer's current knowledge levels

of agroterrorism and simultaneously measure perceived levels of agroterrorism risk to the

operation. Moreover, the focus of the research addressed the issues of bioterrorism,

bioagents, livestock diseases, and ultimately, the preferred resources of educational

material for Florida beef producers. The analyzed data from the survey results will

determine risk perceptions, current agroterrorism safety operation practices, preferred

persons/organizations as educational resources, and the preferred method of delivery for

agroterrorism training materials.

The terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 and the recent discovery of a BSE cow

in the state of Washington have altered the attitudes and risk perceptions in the United

States. Do Americans believe in the safety of the food they consume? Should beef

producers be held accountable for each animal produced on his/her operation? Where do

beef cattle operators go for more information about agroterrorism? How at risk do beef

cattle producers feel our country, the state of Florida, and their farm is in the present state

of the world?

In order to answer these questions a survey was developed modeling a similar

EDEN web survey (EDEN, 2003). The 55 question survey instrument was research

developed and reviewed by a panel of experts. The instrument was divided into sections

by topic and consisted of the following (see Appendix A):

* Part I-Perceptions about Agroterrorism









* Part II-Rate the Level of Perceived Threat

* Part III-Gaining Knowledge about Agroterrorism

* Part IV-Agroterrorism Preparedness

* Part V-Demographics

The results for the study are reported in sequence with the study objectives stated in

Chapter One:

* Identify the current levels of knowledge about agroterrorism held by Florida's beef
cattle producers,

* Identify the level of preparedness against agroterrorism attackss,

* Determine the risk perceptions of the beef producer to bioterrorism and
agroterrorism, and

* With this data, determine the producer's preferences for the delivery of
agroterrorism educational materials.

The survey data collection techniques outlined in Chapter 3 was followed. Of the

137 surveys distributed at the Beef Cattle Short Course, 91 useable responses were

returned to the researcher. Therefore, a response rate of 66.4% (N=91) was achieved.

The data was analyzed using SPSS 11.5 for WindowsTM. In cases where a respondent

failed to answer a question or part of a list of questions, the blank variable was coded as

missing and left blank in the SPSS data system.

Objective One

Identify the current levels of knowledge about agroterrorism held by Florida's
beef cattle producers.

In order to determine results for objective one, questions concerning agroterrorism

knowledge were included in the survey. Part III, Gaining Knowledge about

Agroterrorism, asked participants a range of questions, from agroterrorism workshop

attendance, desired person of contact if ever concerned about biosecurity, to biosecurity









investments before and/or after September 11th. The post-hoc reliability Cronbach's

alpha value for objective one was 0.67. Respondents were asked, "Have you attended a

workshop or general information session about biosecurity/agroterrorism?" (Question

number 17, see Appendix A). Table 6 lists the frequency results. This question had a

100% (N=91) response rate, and the calculated mean was 0.37, with a standard deviation

of 0.57.

Table 6. Attendance at a workshop/information session
Attendance f %

No 61 67.0
Yes, at least once 26 28.6
More than once 4 4.4
Total 91 100

In order to determine the preferred source of contact during a breech of security or

during a suspected agroterrorism attack, beef producers were asked to choose their top

three persons/organizations they would most likely contact. The descriptive statistics are

listed in Table 7.

Table 7. Suspected agroterrorism on your operation, whom would you contact

f %
Law Enforcement 58 63.8
Florida Department of 49 53.9
Agriculture
St. or County Emer. Mgt 28 30.8
Veterinarian 31 34.1
Extension Agent 24 26.4
USDA 14 15.4
Producer Association 13 14.3
Another livestock producer 11 12.1
Other 3 3.3
Missing values 42 46.2
Total 231 253.8









The final question, in Part III of the instrument, was written to better understand the

beef producers' application of current agroterrorism knowledge. Question 19 asked,

"Have you made considerable investments (time, money or effort) to make your

operation more biosecure?" Respondents were to select one response, from the following

choices: 1) Yes, before September 11, 2001; 2) Yes, before and after September 11,

2001; 3) Yes, after September 11, 2001; 4) No; and 5) Don't Know. For the purpose of

consistency, Don't Know and blank responses were coded as missing values. See Table 8

for the frequency data.

Table 8. Have you made considerable investments (time, money, or effort)
f %
No 70 76.9
Yes, before and after Sept. 11, 2001 6 6.6
Yes, after Sept. 11, 2001 9 9.9
Total Responses 85 93.4
Missing values 6 6.6
Total 91 100

Objective Two

Identify the level of preparedness against agroterrorism attackss.

Again, the purpose of this study was to determine current agroterrorism knowledge,

perceptions, and how this relates to safety practices and levels of preparedness. In order

to determine the degree to which preparedness is practiced on beef cattle production

operations, Part IV of the survey instrument used a two-sided Likert-type scale design

(see Appendix A). The post-hoc reliability Cronbach's alpha value for objective two was

0.81. For questions 20-27, respondents were requested to answer two scales. The Likert-

type scale on the left side of each question was designed to determine respondents'

opinion of the importance of each safeguard to better protect a livestock operation. The

scale, a range from 1-4, rated the importance of the farm safety practice: l=No









Importance; 2=Minor Importance; 3=Moderate Importance; 4=Maj or Importance. Table

9 lists the data for the "Importance of the Safeguard" scale.

On the right side of each question another Likert-type scale (scale of 1-4 and Not

Applicable), was intended to measure the degree to which the beef producer practiced the

indicated safeguard. The values for the "Degree to which you Practice" scale: l=Never

practice; 2=Rarely practice; 3=Moderate practice; 4=Always practice; and if the

safeguard scenario did not apply to the respondents' beef cattle operation, they were

encouraged to circle Not Applicable. However, when the data was analyzed in SPSS,

the blank and Not Applicable respondents were coded as missing values. Not Applicable

is in essence a blank response, since it does not apply to the farm operations and if Not

Applicable had been missing as an answer option, respondents would have left the scale

blank for lack of application. Table 10 lists the data for the "Degree to which you

Practice" scale.

In an effort to further understand the mean scores for the above responses,

frequency statistics were computed for both Likert-type scales. See Table 11 for the

frequency data for the importance of the specific operation safeguards. Likewise,

frequency statistics were analyzed for the degree to which beef producers practice each

farm safeguard, see Table 12 for this data.



Table 9. Reported Means: Importance of the Safeguard
Farm Safeguard Mean Std. Dev. N
Isolating a new animal from the herd 3.43 0.75 84
Participate in training programs, to 3.15 0.89 80
enable employees to recognize and
report a disease outbreak
Background check on potential hires 2.94 1.09 78









Table 9. Continued
Regular employee meetings to 2.92 0.96 79
determine their satisfaction levels
Limiting Visitors 2.85 0.93 87
Required waiting period for visitors 2.49 0.92 83
Require employees to wear coveralls 1.74 0.74 81
Require people entering to shower in 1.47 0.70 77
and out

Table 10. Reported Means: Degree to which you Practice
Farm Safeguard Mean Std. Dev. N
Isolating a new animal from the herd 3.29 0.86 77
Limiting Visitors 2.76 0.99 82
Background check on potential hires 2.56 1.14 64
Regular employee meetings to determine 2.54 1.04 68
their satisfaction levels
Participate in training programs, to 2.38 0.98 68
enable employees to recognize and
report a disease outbreak
Required waiting period for visitors 1.87 0.86 77
Require employees to wear coveralls 1.38 0.77 69
Require people entering to shower in and 1.09 0.34 67
out


Objective Three

Determine the risk perceptions of the beef producer to bioterrorism and
agroterrorism.

Part I

The purpose of objective three was to determine the level of risk a beef producer in

Florida felt to the possibility of a bioterrorism or agroterrorism attack. The state of

Florida is at heightened risk due to the accessibility of sea ports and multiple international

airports, which increases the probability of successful introduction of bioagents (Christy

et al., 2004). Therefore, Parts I and II (questions numbered 1-16), and question number

46 specifically addressed risk perceptions in relation to agroterrorism. Part I (questions












Table 11. Frequency data: Importance of the Safeguard


No Importance Minor Moderate Major Importance Total
Farm Safeguard Importance Importance

f % f % f % f % f %

Isolating a new animal from 2 2.2 7 7.7 28 30.8 47 51.6 84 92.3
the herd
Participate in training 6 6.6 8 8.8 34 37.4 32 35.2 80 87.9
programs, to enable
employees to recognize and
report a disease outbreak
Background check on 12 13.2 12 13.2 23 25.3 31 34.1 78 85.7
potential hires
Regular employee meetings to 9 9.9 12 13.2 34 37.4 24 26.4 79 86.8
determine their satisfaction
levels
Limiting visitors 6 6.6 27 29.7 28 30.8 26 28.6 87 95.6


Required waiting period for 12 13.2 30 33.0 29 31.9 12 13.2 83 91.2
visitors
Require employees to wear 33 36.3 38 41.8 8 8.8 2 2.2 81 89.0
coveralls and shoe covers
Require people entering to 49 53.8 21 23.1 6 6.6 1 1.1 77 84.6
shower in and out












Table 12. Frequency data: Degree to which you Practice


Never Practice Rarely Moderate Always Practice Total
Farm Safeguard Practice Practice

f % f % f % f % f %

Isolating a new animal from 3 3.3 11 12.1 24 26.4 39 42.9 77 84.6
the herd
Limiting Visitors 9 9.9 25 27.5 25 27.5 23 25.3 82 90.1


Background check on 16 17.6 13 14.3 18 19.8 17 18.7 64 70.3
potential hires
Regular employee meetings to 15 16.5 14 15.4 26 28.6 13 14.3 68 74.7
determine their satisfaction
levels
Participate in training 14 15.4 24 26.4 20 22.0 10 11.0 68 74.7
programs, to enable
employees to recognize and
report a disease outbreak
Required waiting period for 30 33.0 31 34.1 12 13.2 4 4.4 77 84.6
visitors
Require employees to wear 52 57.1 11 12.1 3 3.3 3 3.3 69 75.8
coveralls and shoe covers
Require people entering to 62 68.1 4 4.4 1 1.1 67 73.6
shower in and out









numbered 1-4), asked respondents to circle the number of a Likert-type scale which best

reflects their feelings to four separate statements. The corresponding scale values were:

1=Strongly disagree; 2=Disagree; 3=Neither agree nor disagree; 4=Agree; 5= Strongly

agree. Blank responses were coded as missing values and were not included in the

calculation of the mean value. The post-hoc reliability Cronbach's alpha for Part I was

0.45.

Question number one, stated "I think that an act of agroterrorism could happen

somewhere in the U.S." This question had a 100% response rate (N=91), and reported a

mean of 4.33, and a standard deviation of 0.65. Therefore, the study population felt that

an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in the U.S. Question number two, "I

think that an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in Florida", had a mean of

4.16 and standard deviation of 0.76, with a 100% (N=91) response rate. Although not as

high a mean as question number one, the sample population conceded that an act of

agroterrorism could happen somewhere in Florida. Next, question number three, "I think

that an act of agroterrorism could happen on my operation", had a reported mean of 3.08,

and a standard deviation of 1.15, with a 98.8% (N=90) response rate. Finally, question

number four, "I feel prepared for an agroterrorism attack or some other biosecurity threat

to my operation", had a reported mean of 2.69, and a standard deviation of 0.96, with a

98.8% (N=90) response rate. Frequency values for each question (1-4) are listed below

in Tables 13-16.

Table 13. I think an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in the U.S.
Scale Value %

Strongly disagree 1 1.1
Disagree 0 0.0
Neither agree nor disagree 3 3.3









Table 13. Continued
Scale Valuef %
Agree 51 56.0
Strongly agree 36 39.6
Total 91 100.0

Table 14. I think an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in Florida
Scale Value %

Strongly disagree 1 1.1
Disagree 2 2.2
Neither agree nor disagree 8 8.8
Agree 50 54.9
Strongly agree 30 33.0
Total 91 100.0


Table 15. I think an act of agroterrorism could happen on my operation
Scale Valuef %

Strongly disagree 13 14.3
Disagree 9 9.9
Neither agree nor disagree 34 37.4
Agree 26 28.6
Strongly agree 8 8.8
Total 90 98.9


Table 16. I feel prepared for an agroterrorism attack or biosecurity threat to my operation
Scale Value f %

Strongly disagree 8 8.8
Disagree 33 36.6
Neither agree nor disagree 30 33.0
Agree 17 18.7
Strongly agree 2 2.2
Total 90 98.9

Part II

The second part of the survey instrument (questions numbered 5-16) was designed

to determine the beef producers' risk perceptions for specific targeted areas of the beef

cattle operation. For Part II, respondents were requested to "Rate the Level of Perceived









Threat" for each aspect of your operation by circling the number on a Likert-type scale

which best reflected the level they felt their operation is at risk to terrorist activity. The

scale values were coded 1-5 for the degree of perceived threat: 1=None (no threat felt);

2=Little threat; 3=Some threat; 4=Much threat; 5=Considerable threat. Specific areas of

concern included: water contamination; feed contamination; animal death; animal disease

outbreak; fertilizer theft/misuse; employee revenge; chemical contamination; zoonotic

illness (disease transmitted from animal to human); loss of income due to market losses;

tampering with facilities; tampering with fences/gates; other, please specify. The

calculated Cronbach's alpha value for Part II was 0.92. The descriptive statistics for each

area of concern are shown in Table 17.

The final instrument question that was designed to provide data for objective three

was question number 46, "To what extent have the Foot and Mouth outbreak in England

and the December 2003 discovery of a Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) case

in the United States influenced any decisions towards improving the security on your

operation?" This question was written to include past events that caused economic

damage to both the United Kingdom and the United States. By reading this question and

choosing from the Likert-type scale: l=No Influence; 2=Minimal Influence; 3=Neither;

4=Influenced; 5=Strongly Influenced; respondents were required to consider past events

of agriculture affected by bioagents, and consider how these situations influence their

beef cattle operation. In Table 18 it is reported that respondents had a difference of

opinion.











Table 17. Part II Descriptive Statistics
Perceived threat for Mean Std. None Little Some Much Considerable Total
each aspect of the Dev.
beef cattle
operation f % f % f % f % f % f %
Loss of income due 3.39 1.22 6 6.6 15 16.5 27 29.7 19 20.9 21 23.1 88 96.7
to market losses
Animal disease 3.00 1.10 8 8.8 24 26.4 24 26.4 28 30.8 6 6.6 90 98.9
outbreak
Tampering with 2.91 1.14 11 12.1 22 24.2 28 30.8 22 24.2 7 7.7 90 98.9
fences/gates
Animal death 2.79 1.00 8 8.8 25 27.5 36 39.6 13 14.3 5 5.5 87 95.6
Water contamination 2.58 1.08 12 13.2 36 39.6 27 29.7 8 8.8 7 7.7 90 98.9
Feed contamination 2.46 1.00 14 15.4 36 39.6 29 31.9 7 7.7 4 4.4 90 98.9
Tampering with 2.41 1.03 16 17.6 38 41.8 22 24.2 11 12.1 3 3.3 90 98.9
facilities
Chemical 2.38 1.11 19 20.9 35 38.5 22 24.2 6 6.6 6 6.6 88 96.7
contamination
Zoonotic illness 2.30 1.03 19 20.9 42 46.2 14 15.4 13 14.3 2 2.2 90 98.9
Fertilizer 2.12 0.92 22 24.2 43 47.3 17 18.7 5 5.5 2 2.2 89 97.8
theft/misuse
Employee revenge 1.88 1.07 41 45.1 31 34.1 10.0 11.0 4 4.4 4 4.4 90 98.9
*Other, please 1.80 1.30 3 3.3 1 1.1 1 1.1 5 5.5
specify_________________
*Other responses are listed in Appendix D.









Table 18. Foot-and-Mouth/BSE influenced operation security decisions.
Mean 3.38
Median 4.00
Std. Deviation 1.31
N 88

Scale f %

No Influence 12 13.2
Minimal Influence 11 12.1
Neither 14 15.4
Influenced 34 37.4
Strongly 17 18.7
Influenced
Total 88 96.7

As seen in Table 18, the majority of respondents felt that the past events of Foot-

and-Mouth in the United Kingdom and the BSE case in the United States had influence in

decisions towards improving security on their operation. 18.7 % of the sample

population felt that the animal disease outbreaks strongly influenced their safety

decisions.

Objective Four

With this data, determine the producer's preferences for the delivery of
agroterrorism educational materials.

The purpose of objective four was to determine where and how beef cattle

producers acquire educational materials or information about agroterrorism and

bioagents, and to use the information from the previous three objectives to provide

adequate and accessible educational information. To satisfy this objective, question

number 28 asked, "Do you have access to educational material that can answer your

agricultural biosecurity questions?" This question provided answers of Yes; No; or Don't

Know. If the survey respondent answered yes, they were encouraged to write in the said

material source in the blank space by the question. For the purpose of reporting a valid









mean, don't know responses were coded as missing values. A response rate of 69.2%

(N=63) was reported, and 30.8% of the population reported no, while 38.5% reported a

yes response to question number 28. There were a total of 28 (30.8%) missing values,

which were either don't know or blank responses.

The next grouping of questions (numbers 29-38), asked: "If you wanted to know

more about agroterrorism or livestock specific biosecurity threats, how likely would it be

for you to contact the following?" The contact list included: Veterinarian, Extension

Agent, Florida Dept. of Agriculture, Another livestock producer, Law enforcement,

USDA, Producer association, State or County Emergency Management, Don't Know

who I would contact, and Other-please specify. In order to determine the probability of

the surveyed beef producers to contact each of the above listed sources, a Likert-type

scale was created to represent the likeliness of contact: 1 Very unlikely; 2=Unlikely;

3=Likely; 4=Fairly likely; 5=Very likely. The mean, standard deviation, and N are

reported in Table 19 for questions 29-38.

Table 19. Likeliness of contacting for biosecurity threat questions.
Contact source Mean Std. Dev. N
Florida Department of 4.11 0.90 87
Agriculture
Extension Agent 3.99 1.04 86
Veterinarian 3.80 1.10 85
Producer Association 3.56 1.20 84
Law Enforcement 3.52 1.29 86
Another Livestock Producer 3.30 1.20 82
St. or county Emergency. Mgt. 3.07 1.32 84
Don't know who I would contact 1.92 1.19 50
Other, please specify* 5.00 1
*See Appendix D for the specified comments.

From the above listed mean values, it can be determined that the Florida

Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services would be the most likely contacted









source during an agroterrorism attack or agroterrorism scare. Furthermore, Extension

agents, veterinarians, and law enforcement officials should also be prepared to receive

inquires about biosecurity threats or during a breech of security on a beef cattle operation.

In relation to the above set of questions, numbers 39-45 of the survey instrument

asked respondents, "If you wanted to know more about agroterrorism or livestock

specific biosecurity threats, where would you look for published information?" This set

of questions used the same Likert-type scale listed above: 1=Very unlikely; 2=Unlikely;

3=Likely; 4=Fairly likely; 5=Very likely. See Table 20 for a report of the descriptive

statistics.

Table 20. Where would you look for published information?
Information source Mean Std. Dev. N
University of Florida 4.25 0.83 88
Extension Office 4.05 0.93 86
World Wide Web 3.93 1.14 87
Farm Magazine 3.60 1.09 88
Newspaper 2.44 1.11 85
Library Publications 2.29 0.96 83
Other, please specify* 5.00 0.00 3
*See Appendix D for the specified comments.

Based on the reported means in Table 20, it can be stated that the top source of

published information is the University of Florida. The second and third preferred

published information sources are the University of Florida IFAS Extension Office and

the World Wide Web, respectively. The least desired source for livestock biosecurity

threat information or agroterrorism related questions is library publications.

Lastly, question number 55 asked, "If the Extension Office were to concentrate on

educating livestock producers about agroterrorism which delivery method would you

prefer?" This question established the top choice of educational material delivery if an

agroterrorism educational program was created by UF-IFAS Extension. The answer









choices were: Weekend training workshop; Read printed materials at your own pace;

Take classes through the World Wide Web; or One-on-One contact with an Extension

agent. Respondents were instructed to select the top choice from the listed options, and

those who checked all the delivery methods, more than one, or did not select any were

coded as missing values. The frequency values are reported in Table 21. The calculated

Cronbach's reliability alpha value for objective four was 0.57. Responses for the "Other,

please specify" were omitted due to the high number of blankly coded answers which

originally caused an error in calculation of the alpha value.

Table 21. Preferred agroterrorism educational materials delivery method
Delivery Method f %
Weekend training workshop 38 41.8
Read printed materials at own pace 22 24.2
Take classes through the World Wide Web 8 8.8
One-on-One contact with an Extension Agent 10 11.0
Missing values 13 14.3
Total 91 100.0

Demographics

Part V of the instrument asked basic demographic questions about the beef

producer and the operation. Of the sample population (N=91), 17.6% were female and

81.3% were male, and there was one missing value (1.1%). When asked "How many

years have you been in the livestock production business", 2.2% (N=2) had been in

production 1 day to 12months, 1.1% (N=1) for 13 months to 2 years, 2.2% (N=2) for 25

months to 3 years, 6.6% (N=6) for 37 months to 4 years, 3.3% (N=3) for 49 months to 5

years, and an overwhelming majority 83.5% (N=76) had been in production for more

than 5 years. For this question (number 48, see Appendix A) there was one (1.1%)

missing value. In order to determine the approximate size of production facilities the

sample population of beef producers manage, question number 52 asked, "What is the









size of your operation?" Answer choices included: less than 1 acre 99 acres; 100- 249

acres; 250-499 acres; 500-999 acres; 1000-1999 acres; or 2000 or more acres. Table 22

lists the frequency data for question number 52.

Table 22. What is the size of your operation?
f %
Less than 1 acre to 99 acres 16 17.6
100 acres to 249 acres 14 15.4
250 acres to 499 acres 9 9.9
500 acres to 999 acres 14 15.4
1000 acres to 1999 acres 8 8.8
2000 or more acres 29 31.9
Total 90 98.9

For this study it was pertinent to consider the economic impact and consequences

that would result from a successful agroterrorism attack. Therefore, questions number 50

and 53 asked respondents to select the range of the number of cattle at peak time on their

facility and the average annual gross receipts for the livestock-related segment of the

operation, respectively. Blank responses were coded as missing values. See Table 23 for

the frequency statistics.

Table 23. Operation Demographics
Number of Cattle at peak f %
1-50 animals 17 18.7
51-100 animals 18 19.8
101-300 animals 14 15.4
301-500 animals 11 12.1
501-1000 animals 5 5.5
1000+ animals 24 26.4
Missing values 2 2.2
Total 91 100.0
Average value of annual gross receipt f %
$1 to $9,999 16 17.6
$10,000 to $49,999 20 22.0
$50,000 to $99,999 10 11.0
$100,000 to $249,999 5 5.5
$250,000 to $499,999 10 11.0
$500,000 to $999,999 5 5.5
$1,000,000 or more 13 14.3









Table 23. Continued.
Average value of annual gross receipt f %
Missing values 12 13.2
Total 91 100.0

As reported in Table 23, the surveyed population holds a significant portion of the

beef cattle market in Florida, with 26.4% (N=24) of the population reporting more than

1,000 cattle on their production facility, and 14.3% (N=13) reporting $1,000,000 or more

in annual gross receipts. This claim is validated by the Florida Department of

Agriculture and Consumer Services (2004), which reports that as of January 1, 2004 there

were 950,000 beef cows in Florida, with 2002 cash receipts for Florida cattle and calves

totaling $333,413,000. Therefore, if an agroterrorism attack were to be successful in

Florida, the devastation would be felt both economically and most likely the plentiful

food supply of beef would suffer.

Respondents were asked if they were: a Landlord only; Operator on land you own;

Operator on rented land; Other, specify (See Appendix D for comments). Only 2.2%

(N=2) are Landlords only, 57.1% (N=52) are operators on land they own, 17.6% (N=16)

are operators on rented land, and 28.6% (N=26) reported some other identity. Finally, the

surveyed beef producers were asked if they had a record keeping system on their

livestock operation (question number 54, see Appendix A). An overwhelming majority

of 90.1% (N=82) said "Yes", 5.5% (N=5) said "No", and 4.4% (N=4) either left it blank

or selected "Don't Know".

Chapter Summary

The findings of the 91 respondents for this study were reported in this chapter. The

results were organized by the objectives and demographics for the population were

included. Statistics were shown to further describe the frequencies and means.









The objectives that guided these results were: 1) identify the current levels of

knowledge about agroterrorism held by Florida's beef cattle producers; 2) identify the

level of preparedness against agroterrorism attackss; 3) determine the risk perceptions of

the beef producer to bioterrorism and agroterrorism; 4) with this data, determine the

producer's preferences for the delivery of agroterrorism educational materials. The

results reported in this chapter will be reported in the conclusions, recommendations, and

limitations, in the forthcoming chapter. A summary of the findings will guide

recommendations for future research and the development of agroterrorism educational

materials and workshops.














CHAPTER 5
SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS

The purpose of this study was to survey the current knowledge and risk perceptions

about agroterrorism of Florida's beef cattle operations. The study focused on specific

security risks to the beef cattle operation and subsequently how or from whom the beef

producer sought biosecurity information. The independent variable for this study was

risk perception, how "at risk" the beef producer felt about the possibility of an

agroterrorism attack. The dependent variable was the level of preparedness practiced on

the beef operation. A research developed instrument was used to collect data, and data

was recorded from 66.4% of the Beef Cattle Short Course participant population. The

contents of this chapter reports conclusions, recommendations, and limitations of the

study.

Objectives

The objectives for the study were to

* Identify current levels of knowledge about agroterrorism held by Florida's beef
cattle producers,

* Identify the level of preparedness against agroterrorism attackss,

* Determine the risk perceptions of the beef producer to bioterrorism and
agroterrorism, and

* With this data, determine producer's preferences for the delivery of agroterrorism
educational materials.

Procedure

The designated population for this study was a convenience sample of beef cattle

producers that participated in the University of Florida IFAS Beef Cattle Short Course









(BCSC), May 4-6, 2005. During the BCSC, 137 surveys were distributed. Of the 137

distributed instruments, 91 useable questionnaires were returned to the researcher

resulting in a 66.4% response rate. The survey instrument was modeled from a similar

EDEN study designed for agriculture and horticulture producers and was improved

following a pilot test (EDEN, 2003). The pilot test, conducted on March 15, 2005, was

imperative to determine the validity and reliability of the instrument used in the study.

The instrument data was collected at the BCSC, as participants completed the

questionnaire during the May 4-6, 2005 conference. The instrument consisted of 55

research developed questions and was divided into parts satisfying the above objectives.

Data was analyzed using SPSS 11.5 for WindowsTM. The study objective data

was analyzed through descriptive statistics, predominantly with means and frequencies.

The Likert-type scaled items were treated as ordinal data and coded in SPSS

accordingly. Each blank survey question was coded as missing data, and was not

assigned a value in SPSS to avoid skewing the mean values.

Conclusions

The conclusions of the research data are organized and analyzed in relation to the

four objectives initially introduced in Chapter One.

Objective One

Objective one aimed to determine and describe the current knowledge levels of

agroterrorism in the specific population of Florida beef cattle producers. Agroterrorism

refers to an act of any person knowingly or maliciously using biological and/or chemical

agents as weapons against the agricultural industry and/or the food supply. The term

agroterrorism combines acts of terrorism with agricultural commodities and this study

addresses the main threats and areas of concern for the agricultural commodity of Florida









beef cattle specifically. The surveyed sample consisted of 91 Florida beef cattle

producers in attendance at the BCSC May 4-6, 2005. In order to satisfy the first study

objective, Part III of the instrument asked participants about agroterrorism workshop

attendance, preferred contact person if ever concerned about biosecurity, and biosecurity

investments before and/or after September 11th.

When asked, "have you attended a workshop or general information session about

biosecurity/agroterrorism?" 67% of the 91 respondents (N=61) reported never attending

such an informational session. Only 28.6% (N=26) respondents had attended an

informational session at least once, and a mere 4.4% (N=4) had participated in more than

one workshop. These results indicate that Florida beef producers are not getting access to

or are choosing not to access the educational materials necessary to provide adequate

security on their respective operations. A lack of available workshop training offered to

Florida beef cattle producers will increase the vulnerability to an agroterrorism attack by

possibly slowing the detection of a foreign animal disease on a beef cattle production

facility.

Next, when participants were asked to select the top three persons they would most

likely contact if they suspected an act of agroterrorism, the contact source that was

selected most frequently by the population was Law Enforcement (f=58, 63.8%).

Furthermore, the frequency data in Table 7 reports the strength of the likelihood for

contact when a beef cattle producer suspects an act of agroterrorism to their operation.

This frequency data reaffirms the need to educate all contact sources listed in Table 7,

especially Florida veterinarians, Florida law enforcement, IFAS Extension agents, State









and County emergency management, and the Florida Department of Agriculture and

Consumer Services about agroterrorism and risk communication.

Lastly, the final question for objective one that determines the current application

of agroterrorism knowledge and risk perceptions asks, "have you made considerable

investments (time, money, or effort) to make your operation more biosecure?" An

overwhelming majority of the population, 76.9% (N=70), said No. These respondents

have not invested time, money, or effort to increase security on their operation, even after

the September 11th terrorist attacks. A mere 6.6% (N=6) reported "Yes, before and after

September 11, 2001" and 9.9% (N=9) reported "Yes, after September 11, 2001". This

data verifies that Florida beef producers have not been significantly affected by the

September 11th terrorist attacks, and have maintained the current level of security on their

beef operation.

Objective Two

In order to satisfy objective two, a two-sided Likert-type scale of questions 20-27

was included to determine respondents' opinion of the importance of specific farm

safeguards and the degree to which each beef producer practices that safeguard on his/her

operation. The farm safeguard that was rated the highest in importance (on a scale of 1-

4; 1=No importance, 4= Major Importance) was "Isolating a new animal from the herd"

(M=3.43, Std. Dev. =0.75). Furthermore, "Isolating a new animal from the herd" was

also rated highest (M=3.29, Std. Dev. =0.86) on the second Likert-type scale of "degree

to which you practice" (on a scale of 1-4; l=Never practice, 4=Always practice). The

population agreed that isolating a new animal from the herd was the most important farm

security safeguard and was practiced the most by the surveyed beef producers. The farm

safeguard of "Participating in training programs to enable employees to recognize and









report a disease outbreak" was ranked as moderate importance (M=3.15, Std. Dev.

=0.89), but was rarely practiced by the population (M=2.38, Std. Dev. =0.98). Although

the beef producers felt this was a valid practice in order to maintain biosecurity, most of

the population rarely practiced this safeguard. The surveyed respondents also determined

that the two safeguards that held the least importance on a beef production facility were

"Requiring employees to wear coveralls" and "Requiring people entering the facility to

shower in and out", with reported means of 1.74 and 1.47, respectively. Moreover, these

two safeguards were practiced the least among the respondents, M=1.38 and M=1.09,

respectively.

Although the threat of terrorism has been heightened in the United States, Florida

beef cattle producers do not feel that most farm safeguards are important nor do they

practice these safeguards to protect their operation. Only two safeguards were considered

moderately important, four safeguards were considered of minor importance, and two

safeguards were of no importance to the sample population Likewise, the population felt

that only one safeguard was moderately practiced, four were rarely practiced, and three

safeguards were never practiced. These results indicate that the importance of farm

safeguards is not considered by Florida beef cattle producers during the daily operations

of the farm. This safety attitude, in relation to the practice of basic agroterrorism farm

safeguards, results in most of the farm safety practices rarely or never being practiced.

Therefore, a change in Florida beef cattle operator's attitudes towards farm safety will

directly influence the degree to which they practice agroterrorism farm safeguards.

Objective Three

The purpose of objective three was to gauge the level of risk to an agroterrorism or

bioterrorism attack perceived by the Florida beef producer. Part I (questions numbered 1-









4) of the instrument listed four statements with a Likert-type scale (1-5) with which

respondents were to express their disagreement or agreement to the statements. For the

statement, "I think an act of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in the U.S.", the

majority of the population agreed, 56% (N=51) or strongly agreed, 39.6% (N=36).

Furthermore, 54.9% (N=50) of the population agreed with the statement, "I think an act

of agroterrorism could happen somewhere in Florida", and 33.0% (N=30) strongly

agreed. However, when the statement focused on the probability of an agroterrorism

attack happening on the beef producers' own operation, opinions shifted. For example,

only 28.6% (N=26) agreed, 37.4% (N=34) neither agreed or disagreed, and 14.3%

(N=13) strongly disagreed to the statement, "I think an act of agroterrorism could happen

on my operation."

The wide range of responses for this statement may be a result of misinformation

about the seriousness of agroterrorism or the confidence held by beef producers in

seeking guidance in the event agroterrorism impacts the Florida beef industry.

Considering that 37.4% of the population neither agreed nor disagreed that an act of

agroterrorism could happen on their operation means that many producers felt uncertain

about the probability of agroterrorism affecting them. However, since 87.9% of the

population either agreed or strongly agreed that an act of agroterrorism could happen

somewhere in Florida, beef cattle producers should be prepared for the possibility of an

attack, considering that they strongly agree that it can happen in the state where their

operation is located. These results illustrate that when beef producers were asked if

agroterrorism could happen to them, they were less likely to agree, even though they

agree it could happen somewhere in Florida.









The final statement, "I feel prepared for an agroterrorism attack or biosecurity

threat to my operation", received mixed responses. The majority of the population

disagreed 36.6% (N=33), 33.0% (N=30) neither agreed nor disagreed, 18.7% (N=17)

agreed, 8.8% (N=8) strongly disagreed and a small 2.2% (N=2) strongly agreed. These

results prove that most respondents are unsure about preparation of their beef production

facility for an agroterrorism attack. The majority of the population disagreed with this

statement, and 33.0% was undecided concerning agroterrorism preparedness. These

findings confirm that agroterrorism educational materials and training sessions need to be

created in order to better prepare Florida beef cattle producers in the event of an

agroterrorism attack.

Part II of the instrument (questions numbered 5-16) targeted risk perceptions of

specific areas of the beef cattle operation. Respondents were asked to "Rate the Level of

Perceived Threat" for each area that was listed, on a 1-5 scale, with 1=None (no threat

felt) to 5=Considerable threat. The perceived threat of loss of income due to market

losses was the largest area of concern for the population (M=3.39). However, the

perceived threat of an animal disease outbreak was another significant concern for beef

producers (M=3.00). The perceived threat of animal death and the perceived threat of

tampering with farm fences/gates also were of concern, with reported means of 2.79 and

2.91 respectively. The area that producers felt was at the least risk to terrorist activity

was the perceived threat of employee revenge, M=1.88. The majority of the population

felt this area was of no threat, 45.1% (N=41), and 34.1% (31) felt it was of little threat.

The perceived threat of loss of income due to market losses was rated as the highest

concern for Florida beef cattle producers. In the event of a successful agroterrorism









attack to a Florida beef cattle operationss, economically the attacked operations) would

suffer financially as a result of decreased consumer confidence and/or would suffer from

a loss of livestock available for market sale. Therefore, to protect against a loss of profit

due to market fluctuations, Florida beef producers need to consider the importance of the

farm safeguards (questions 20-27) discussed in Objective two, and begin practicing them

to further protect the operation and livestock.

Although the sample population rated employee revenge as the least perceived risk,

attention should be focused on employee satisfaction and work ethic. Farm managers

should have regular employee meetings and actively and professionally address specific

concerns and questions of the employee. Employees often have unlimited access to the

cattle operation and are trusted to care and maintain the production facility. Hence, risk

communication with employees needs to be based on a trusting relationship, with the

farm manager explicitly outlining farm safety risks, safety practices, and procedures and

persons of contact if the employee suspects an agroterrorism attack to the operation.

To better understand the affect of global agricultural issues on Florida beef

production operations the instrument question, "To what extent have the Foot and Mouth

outbreak in England and the December 2003 discovery of a Bovine Spongiform

Encephalopathy (BSE) case in the U.S. influenced any decisions towards improving the

security on your operation?" was included. The majority of the population felt that these

global issues had influenced their decisions of improving security, 37.4% (N=34).

Additionally, 18.7% (N=17) of the respondents were strongly influenced, 12.1% (N= 11)

were minimally influenced, and 13.2% (N=12) have felt no influence. Therefore, the

Foot and Mouth outbreak in the United Kingdom and the recent BSE case in the state of









Washington have indeed raised awareness within the Florida beef producer community,

influencing decisions towards improving farm security. However, as reported in the

previous objectives, Florida beef cattle producers have done little or nothing to practice

further safety measures on their operations.

Objective Four

The final study objective aimed to utilize the beef producers' insights on their

preferred sources of contact and printed material about agroterrorism and bioagents.

First, the participants were asked, "do you have access to educational material that can

answer your agricultural biosecurity questions?" The answer choices of Yes; No; or

Don't Know prompted the following results: 38.5% (N=35) reported Yes, 30.8% (28)

reported No, and 30.8% (N=28) answered Don't Know or were blank responses. From

these results it can be stated that a majority of the population did not have access to

agroterrorism educational materials, or did not know if they had access.

Questions 29-38 asked participants whom they would most likely contact if they

wanted more information about agroterrorism or livestock specific biosecurity threats. A

Likert-type scale was created to represent the likeliness to contact: 1=Very Unlikely to

5=Very Likely. The contact source that was preferred by the study population was the

Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, M=4.11, Std. Dev. = 0.90.

Contact sources that were rated favorably by the respondents and should be prepared for

agroterrorism questions are the following: UF-IFAS Extension Agent, M=3.99;

Veterinarian, M=3.80; Producer Association, M=3.56; Law enforcement, M=3.52;

Another livestock producer, M=3.30; State or county emergency management, M=3.07;

50 respondents felt they didn't know who they would contact, M=1.92; and only one

respondent specified some other source as a preferred contact (see Appendix D).









In relation to the preferred person/organization source, respondents were asked, "if

you wanted to know more about agroterrorism or livestock specific biosecurity threats,

where would you look for published information?" This question set duplicated the

Likert-type scale for the previous set of questions (l=Very Unlikely to 5=Very Likely).

The University of Florida received the highest preference as a published information

source, M=4.25, Std. Dev. = 0.83. The Extension Office would likely receive

information requests during an agroterrorism threat or attack, M=4.05, and the World

Wide Web also yielded high preference, M=3.93. The two sources unlikely to be used as

an information source are the newspaper and library publications, M=2.44 and M=2.29,

respectively.

These results strengthen the call for applicable and accessible materials for the

sample population. The University of Florida is viewed as the expert and preferred

source of educational materials, as UF is the Land Grant research institution for the state.

The UF-IFAS Extension Service is viewed as another top source for agroterrorism

information, needing the most current agroterrorism preparedness information in the

event of an agroterrorism threat or attack on Florida.

The final question applicable to objective four asked, "if the Extension Office were

to concentrate on educating livestock producers about agroterrorism which delivery

method would you prefer?" The educational delivery method preferred by 41.8% (N=38)

of the participants was a weekend training workshop. The next preferred delivery

method was reading printed materials at one's own pace, 24.2% (N=22), followed by

one-on-one contact with an Extension agent, 11.0% (N=10). The least desired delivery

method was taking classes through the World Wide Web, 8.8% (N=8). There were 13









(14.3%) blank or incorrectly marked responses for this question. The sample population

for this study was surveyed at the BCSC three-day workshop from Wednesday to Friday.

This may have biased the sample population to choose weekend workshop as the

preferred delivery method of agroterrorism training, as they were in attendance at the

three day BCSC.

Limitations of the Study

A limitation to this study was the availability of the audience surveyed. It was not

a random sample, instead a convenience sample. Participants were surveyed based on

their attendance to the Beef Cattle Short Course. Therefore, if the survey instrument had

been mailed out, there could have been a more representative sample.

Another limitation to the study was the population sample size. Although a

response rate of 66.4% (N=91) is acceptable, more preparation to be allotted time on the

BCSC agenda would have ensured a larger sample size.

Summary of Findings

Based on the literature reviewed in Chapter Two, the need for agroterrorism

preparedness and biosecurity practices has been called to attention since the September

11th terrorist attacks, the Foot and Mouth disease outbreak in the United Kingdom, and

the recent BSE case in the state of Washington. The need to protect America's safe,

affordable, and abundant food supply should be a top priority in each beef producer's

daily agenda. However, biosecurity safety practices may be perceived as costly, time

consuming, and or too elaborate for many beef producers to implement on the production

facility.

The objective of this study was to determine the agroterrorism risk perceptions held

by Florida beef cattle producers. The study results determined that beef producers feel at









risk to agroterrorism. Most Florida beef producers felt that an act of agroterrorism could

happen somewhere in the United States and somewhere in Florida. Furthermore,

respondents mainly disagreed or neither agreed nor disagreed with feeling prepared for an

agroterrorism attack to his/her operation. The population felt that agroterrorism could

happen in the United States and/or Florida, but remained neutral about the probability of

agroterrorism happening on his/her operation. Yet, if an act of agroterrorism were to

happen, the majority of the population felt unprepared for an agroterrorism attack. These

findings confirm the need for more educational materials and programs to better prepare

Florida beef producers for bioterrorism and agroterrorism.

In order to prevent and better protect Florida beef operations from bioagents, there

are specific protective measures that would provide a barrier for terrorist activity. The

population only rated two safeguard practices moderately important: isolating a new

animal from the herd and participating in training programs to enable employees to

recognize and report a disease outbreak. Surprisingly, two safety practices were ranked

at almost no importance: requiring employees to wear coveralls and requiring people

entering the beef cattle operation to shower in and out. Yet, if a beef facility is to remain

proactive against the introduction of bioagents, every possible method of protection

should be practiced. But, the only safeguard moderately practiced by the population was

isolating a new animal from the herd.

If beef producers are only consistently practicing the farm safeguard of isolating a

new animal from the herd, then a successful agroterrorism attack could be achieved with

relatively little effort. Kohnen (2000) states that livestock producers can reduce risk by

increasing biosecurity measures at their facilities. But, "not all farms adhere to these









guidelines. A survey of 252 farms that raise hens for egg production, some with 200,000

egg layers, found that almost one-third of the sites allow nonbusiness visitors into the

laying houses. More than 85 percent of dairy farms do not isolate new cows from the rest

of the herd for any period of time" (Kohnen, 2000, p. 23). These findings are cause for

concern, as biosecurity is in the beef producer's best interest. By practicing

agroterrorism farm safety, the producer will ensure continued production of quality beef

and a stable economic market.

In order to provide agroterrorism protection, Florida beef producers need

information and educational materials. The preferred contact source concerning

biosecurity questions is the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

The preferred source of reference for published agroterrorism information is the

University of Florida. The UF-IFAS Extension office was also ranked at the top as a

published information source, with an Extension agent also ranked high as a contact

source. The above mentioned organizations and individuals should prepare and

familiarize themselves about agroterrorism and bioagents in order to inform the public

with the most current and correct biosecurity practices. Yet, all contact sources and

published information sources listed in Tables 19 and 20 should be educated and

prepared for an agroterrorism attack or biosecurity threat to Florida beef cattle operations.

Moreover, the preferred method of learning about agroterrorism and biosecurity practices

is a weekend training workshop.

Overall, the population of beef producers consisted of large operations, 26.4%

(N=24) respondents reported over 1,000 animals on his/her production facility at the peak

time of year. Moreover, 14.3% (N=13) respondents reported an average annual gross









receipt value of $1,000,000 or more, representing a substantial portion of the Florida

economic beef cattle market. In order to determine the percentage of beef cattle

operations that track cattle and keep current records about operation activity, question 54

asked, "is there a record keeping system on your livestock operation?" An overwhelming

90.1% (N=82) of the respondents confirmed the presence of a record keeping system on

their operation. This is encouraging as the United States Animal Identification Plan

(USAIP) program is in the process of being instituted. The goal of the USAIP is, "to

achieve a traceback system that can identify all animals and premises potentially exposed

to an animal with a Foreign Animal Disease (FAD) within 48 hours after discovery"

(United States Animal Identification Plan, 2003, p. 2).

The results from this study can be used to develop written educational materials

about agroterrorism, bioterrorism, and bioagents. Specific farm safeguards and areas of

concern can be identified and addressed. Furthermore, this study distinguishes the beef

producer's preferred contact person and printed material source, allowing the educational

materials to be supplied to these individuals and organizations to be distributed to the

public in a more timely and beneficial manner. Finally, the preferred method of delivery

for agroterrorism educational materials is a weekend training workshop.

A recent example of agroterrorism workshop training was four regional workshops

hosted by The University of Minnesota Extension Service titled, "Protecting Our Food

System from Intentional Attack". The full-day workshops, scheduled for June and July

of 2005, were tailored to people working in Minnesota's food industry. This included

farming, food protection, manufacturing, and regulation, with a specific focus on dairy,

meat, grain, and feed producers, extension educators, local emergency response, public









health care professionals, and food transportation personnel. (University of Minnesota

Extension Service, 2005). John Shutske, agricultural health and safety specialist with

Extension, and the event coordinator said, "even though the focus will be on intentional

events, the program will be very helpful in planning for unintentional events. These

include natural disasters, disease outbreaks and foodborne illness outbreaks that occur

every year" (University of Minnesota Extension Service, 2005, p. 1). The UF-IFAS

Extension Service could examine the format of this program and tailor it to apply to the

needs of Florida livestock producers.

Recommendations

The findings from this research suggested that Florida beef producers need more

accessible and applicable agroterrorism educational materials to better protect against

bioagents. Florida beef producers identify with the national bioterrorism threat, and

agree that agroterrorism could happen somewhere in Florida. Therefore, in order to

preserve the Florida beef cattle business, preparatory actions needed to be taken to

increase biosecurity on state-wide production facilities.

Further research needs to be conducted to determine the preferred delivery method

of agroterrorism educational materials. A more exhaustive list of delivery methods

should be offered to Florida beef cattle producers, including the choice of week-day

training.

Multiple agroterrorism training workshops should be organized throughout Florida

to begin the educational process. The workshops should follow the pre-test/post-test

format, testing the risk perceptions and agroterrorism knowledge of the beef producers

before the workshop and after the workshop. A follow-up survey should be conducted to









measure the application and practice of the learned workshop security measures on the

beef operation.

A mail survey like this study should be conducted on Florida dairy cattle producers

to determine their risk perceptions and agroterrorism knowledge. The mail survey would

reveal similarities and any differences between dairy and beef producers' opinions of

farm safeguards and preferred agroterrorism contacts. The reported data would

effectively determine if the same agroterrorism weekend workshop training would benefit

both dairy and beef producers simultaneously, or if their needs dictate differing methods.

Future agroterrorism materials should include discussion of the farm safeguard

measure which includes the isolation of animals) that have been traveling and in contact

with other animals and facilities, such as is the case with show animals.

The survey instrument used in this study could be adapted and administered to

other livestock industries. It is recommended that individual instrument questions be

tailored to apply to different animal industries for particular operation scenarios. For

example, Part IV of the instrument, which measured agroterrorism preparedness in

relation to specific farm safeguards, should be revised to inquire about farm safeguards

that apply to other animal-related enterprises.















APPENDIX A
SURVEY INSTRUMENT














Agricultural Security Risks
Survey for Florida Livestock
Producers




.. UNIVERSITY OF
SFLORIDA
IFAS


Agricultural & Biological Engineering
College of Agricultural and Life Sciences
Frazier Rogers Hall
University of Florida
P.O. Box 110570
Gainesville, FL 32611-0570
Ph: (352) 392-1864













Purpose of the Study


The purpose of this study is to survey the current knowledge
perceptions about Agroterrorism from Florida Beef and Dairy
production operations. Your answers will serve as a guide when
educational programs and materials are developed for homeland
security. For this survey Homeland Security is a state of being
prepared to prevent or reduce the impact of a terrorist attack on
domestic natural resources, the economic sectors, or the American
people.
This survey refers to two specific threats: Agroterrorism and
Bioterrorism. For example, agroterrorism could involve the
introduction of a foreign animal disease onto a farm, theft of chemicals
for a meth lab, or acts of destruction by an activist group. Bioterrorism
refers to an act of any person knowingly or maliciously introducing
disease-causing agents or organisms to an animal, plant or human
population, thus threatening food and water resources as well as human
and animal life.
Please take a few minutes and answer each question to the best
of your knowledge. You do not have to answer any question you do
not wish to answer. The survey will take an estimated 15 minutes to
complete. The responses you provide will remain confidential. Only
summarized data will be reported in order to protect the identity of
each individual respondent.

Thank you for participating in the study.

Sincerely,

odi L. DeGraw
Graduate Assistant
Agricultural and Biological Engineering












Agricultural Security Risks Survey for Livestock Producers

PART I Perceptions about Agroterrorism

Agroterrorism refers to an act of any person knowingly or
maliciously using biological and/or chemical agents as weapons against the
agricultural industry and/or the food supply, or using agricultural chemicals
and machinery to perform an act of terrorism against any segment of the
American population. Therefore, please circle the number which best
reflects your feelings to the following statements:

(5) Strongly Agree
(4) Agree
(3) Neither Agree nor Disagree
(2) Disagree
(1) Strongly Disagree o o








3. I think that an act of agroterrorism
4. I think that an actofagroterrorism 5 4 3 2 1
could happen somewhere in the U.S.


2. I think that an act of agroterrorism 5 4 3 2 1
could happen somewhere in Florida.


3. I think that an act of agroterrorism 5 4 3 2 1
could happen on my operation.


4. I feel prepared for an agroterrorism 5 4 3 2 1
attack or some other biosecurity threat
to my operation.



2











PART II- Rate the Level of Perceived Threat

Rate the Level of Perceived Threat you feel for each aspect of
your operation. Please circle the number which best reflects the
level you feel your operation is at risk to terrorist activity.

Rate the degree of perceived threat for each aspect as:
(5) CONSIDERABLE threat
(4) MUCH threat a
(3) SOME threat
(2) LITTLE threat
(1) NONE (No threat felt)


5. Water Contamination 5 4 3 2 1

6. Feed Contamination 5 4 3 2 1

7. Animal Death 5 4 3 2 1

8. Animal Disease Outbreak 5 4 3 2 1

9. Fertilizer Theft/Misuse 5 4 3 2 1

10. Employee Revenge 5 4 3 2 1

11. Chemical Contamination 5 4 3 2 1

12. Zoonotic Illness 5 4 3 2 1
(Disease transmitted from animal to human)

13. Loss of Income Due to Market Loss 5 4 3 2 1

14. Tampering with Facilities 5 4 3 2 1

15. Tampering with Fences/Gates 5 4 3 2 1

16. Other, please specify: 5 4 3 2 1



3













PART III- Gaining Knowledge about Agroterrorism

17. Have you attended a workshop or general information session
about biosecurity/agroterrorism?

Yes, at least once
More than once
No

18. If you suspected an act of agroterrorism (or breech of
security) on your operation, from whom would you seek advice?
(Select the three you would most likely contact).

Veterinarian
Extension Agent
Florida Dept. of Agriculture
Another livestock producer
Law enforcement
USDA
Producer Association
State or county Emergency Management
Don't know
Other (please specify)


19. Have you made considerable investments (time, money or
effort) to make your operation more biosecure?

Yes, before September 11, 2001
Yes, before and after September 11, 2001
Yes, after September 11, 2001
No
Don't know



4














PART IV- Agroterrorism Preparedness
Below is a list of safeguards that one may practice on the farm in
order to reduce the likelihood of loss of production due to disease
introduction.

To the LEFT, circle the number which represents your opinion of the
importance of the safeguard to better protect your livestock operation.

To the RIGHT, circle the degree to which you practice the indicated
safeguard on your livestock operation, if the scenario does not apply to
your farm, circle Not Applicable.


Importance of
the Safeguard

0.)





" 0 -
M R M
O O
*-> ^ a i-
o .3


Circle your responses


Degree to Which
You Practice






-C l ,
1 g f
^ ^3 ^ i


4 3 2 1 20. Limiting visitors 4 3 2 1

Not Applicable

21. Requiring a waiting 4 3 2 1
4 3 2 1 period for visitors who have Not Ap
Not Applicable
been on another farm

22. Isolating a new animal 4 3 2 1
4 3 2 1 for observation before
Not Applicable
introducing it to the entire
herd

23. Requiring employees to 4 3 2 1
4 3 2 1 wear coveralls and shoe Not A
Not Applicable
covers



5



























Importance of
the Safeguard

o.)
) c3 ( o)




0 0
" y = |
+21


Circle your responses


Degree to Which
you Practice



ot
C
0 i -



w S 0t 0
d- c


4 3 2 1 24. Requiring people entering 4 3 2 1
the facility to shower in and Not Ap
S, Not Applicable
shower out

25. Conducting a background 4 3 2 1
4 3 2 1 check on potential hires Not Ap
Not Applicable


26. Have regular meetings 4 3 2 1
4 3 2 1 with employees to determine
Not Applicable
levels of their satisfaction

27. Participate in a training 4 3 2 1
4 3 2 1 programs) that will enable Not Ap
Not Applicable
employees to quickly
recognize and report a disease





6











28. Do you have access to educational material that can answer your
agricultural biosecurity questions? If you answer "Yes", please write
in the material source in the blank space below:

Yes
No
Don't Know

If you wanted to know more about agroterrorism or livestock specific
biosecurity threats, how likely would it be for you to contact the
following? Please circle the number which best represents your
response.
(5) VERY Likely
(4) FAIRLY Likely
(3) LIKELY 2
(2) UNLIKELY .
(1) VERY Unlikely _
29. Veterinarian 5 4 3 2 1

30. Extension Agent 5 4 3 2 1

31. Florida Dept. of Agriculture 5 4 3 2 1

32. Another Livestock Producer 5 4 3 2 1

33. Law Enforcement 5 4 3 2 1

34. USDA 5 4 3 2 1

35. Producer Association 5 4 3 2 1

36. State or County Emergency Mgt. 5 4 3 2 1

37. Don't Know Who I Would Contact 5 4 3 2 1

38. Other, please specify: 5 4 3 2 1



7













If you wanted to know more about agroterrorism or livestock specific
biosecurity threats, where would you look for published information?
Please circle the number which best represents your response.

(5) VERY Likely
(4) FAIRLY Likely -
(3) LIKELY "
(2) UNLIKELY
(1) VERY Unlikely o 5 .I a

39. Farm Magazine 5 4 3 2 1

40. Newspaper 5 4 3 2 1

41. On the World Wide Web 5 4 3 2 1

42. Library Publications 5 4 3 2 1

43. Extension Office 5 4 3 2 1

44. University of Florida 5 4 3 2 1

45. Other, please specify 5 4 3 2 1


46. To what extent have the Foot and Mouth outbreak in England
and the December 2003 discovery of a Bovine Spongiform
Encephalopathy (BSE) case in the U.S. influenced any decisions
towards improving the security on your operation?

Strongly Influenced 5

Influenced 4

Neither 3

Minimal Influence 2

No Influence 1


8














PART V- Demographics

47. Are you:

Male
Female

48. How many years have you been in the Livestock
production business? Select one.

1 day 12 months
13 months 2 years
25 months 3 years
37 months 4 years
49 months 5 years
More than 5 years

49. Indicate the type of Livestock productions) that apply to
you by circling from the choices:

BEEF DAIRY

50. Please select the number of cattle on your production
facility during your peak time of the year (when you are at your
maximum). Select one.

1-50 animals
51-100 animals
101-300 animals
301-500 animals
501-1000 animals
1000+ animals

51. Are you:

Landlord only
Operator on land you own
Operator on rented land
Other (specify)



9















PART V- Operation Demographics

52. What is the size of your operation?

Less than 1 acre to 99 acres
100 249 acres
250 499 acres
500 999 acres
1000 1999 acres
2000 or more acres

53. What is the average value of your annual gross receipts for
the livestock-related segment of your operation?

$1 to $9,999
$10,000 $49,999
$50,000 $99,999
$100,000 $249,999
$250,000 $499,999
$500,000 $999,999
$1,000,000 or more

54. Is there a record keeping system on your livestock
operation?

Yes
No
Don't Know

55. If the Extension Service were to concentrate on educating
livestock producers about agroterrorism which delivery method
would you prefer? Please select your top choice:

Weekend Training Workshop
Read printed materials at your own pace
Take classes through the World Wide Web
One-on-One contact with an Extension agent


10















Thank you for your time!

Your participation in this questionnaire is appreciated and the
information collected will be used to more effectively create
Agroterrorism educational materials.










Do you have any additional comments, concerns, or
questions about livestock security issues? Feel free to
provide feedback in the blank space below:


















APPENDIX B
INFORMED CONSENT FORM


UNIVERSITY OF

FLORIDA


Institutional Review Board


98A Psychology Bldg.
PO Box 112250
Gainesville, FL 32611-2250
Phone: (352) 392-0433
Fax: (352) 392-9234
E-mail: irb2@ufl.edu
http://irb.ufl.edu


March 28, 2005


TO: Jodi DeGraw
PO Box 110570
Campus i
FROM: Ira S. Fischler, Ph.D., Chair "
University of Florida
Institutional Review Board 02

SUBJECT: Approval of Protocol #2005-U-0336

TITLE: Perceptions of Florida Livestock Producers on Preparedness for a Bioterrorist Attack
SPONSOR: None


I am pleased to advise you that the University of Florida Institutional Review Board has recommended
approval of this protocol. Based on its review, the UFIRB determined that this research presents no
more than minimal risk to participants, and based on 45 CFR 46.117(c), authorizes you to administer
the Informed consent process as specified in the protocol.

If you wish to make any changes to this protocol, including the need to increase the number of
participants authorized, you must disclose your plans before you implement them so that the Board
can assess their impact on your protocol. In addition, you must report to the Board any unexpected
complications that affect your participants.

If you have not completed this protocol by March 26, 2006, please telephone our office (392-0433),
and we will discuss the renewal process with you. It is important that you keep your Department Chair
informed about the status of this research protocol.


ISF:dl


Equal Opponunity/Affimiative Action Instltulion


DATE: