Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Vijay Golla (Director), Fred DeGraves, Moon-Soo Kim

Degree Program

Department of Physics and Astronomy

Degree Type

Master of Science


Agroterrorism is the deliberate introduction of a plant or animal disease with the
goal of causing fear, economic instability, illness, or death. After the 2002 terrorist
attacks on the World Trade Center, the security of the food supply is of increasing
concern to the United States. A major incidence of agroterrorism or food tampering would have far reaching impacts on the economy and public health. The first objective of this project was to determine knowledge and concern of agroterrorism in meat processing facilities in Kentucky, and to determine knowledge and concern of food tampering and food defense in food service establishments in Warren County, Kentucky. The second objective was to determine security strategies that were being implemented by these facilities. Two separate surveys, one for meat processors and the other for food service establishments, were designed to meet these objectives. An observational study was conducted for meat processing facilities. It was found that these facilities were generally unconcerned with agroterrorism, although a reasonable amount of security implementations were in place at these facilities. A statistical comparison between restaurants and non-restaurant food service establishments, such as schools, hospitals, and hotels, was performed. Both types of food service establishments expressed little concern about a food tampering event. Non- restaurant food service establishments were slightly more concerned than restaurants about both food tampering and food defense.


Agriculture | Food and Drug Law | Food Microbiology | Food Processing | Food Science | National Security Law