The National Agricultural Biosecurity Center was envisioned in 1999 to build on existing strengths at Kansas State University. K-State is a land-grant university traditionally renowned for its interdisciplinary capabilities in animal, plant, veterinary, and agricultural sciences; strong institutional commitment; and forward thinking as a leader in animal health and food safety.
In March 1999, K-State proposed a Homeland Defense Food Safety, Security and Emergency Preparedness Program (pdf), and in October 1999, K-State President Jon Wefald presented testimony to the U.S. Senate's Emerging Threats Subcommittee, describing the "Agricultural Biological Weapons Threat Food Safety, Security and Emergency Preparedness (pdf)". These documents are as relevant today as they were in 1999 and are an excellent resource for those interested in protecting America's agricultural infrastructure.
The NABC's aim is to coordinate academic agricultural biosecurity activities with federal, state, and local agencies as well as the public health community and colleagues worldwide to facilitate effective strategies for prevention of and rapid response to emerging agricultural threats.
In the homeland defense arena, K-State is one of the initial (pre-9/11) national voices concerning agricultural threats. In partnership with state and federal elements, the NABC manages relationships and collaborations with on-campus centers, institutes, external contractors, and other organizations to meet the challenge of protecting the American public and the domestic food supply chain from biological threats.
The NABC contributes to homeland security initiatives through response planning and exercises, lessons learned analysis, agricultural disease risk and threat analysis, education and awareness, international initiatives, and support for the Biosecurity Research Institute.