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National Bio and Agro-defense Facility

About the facility

With the arrival of the National Bio and Agro-defense Facility (NBAF), Kansas State University is cementing its reputation as a national leader in protecting U.S. agriculture — crops, livestock — and food. NBAF will attract the best and brightest scientists to the Manhattan area and will lead to collaboration among researchers regionally and nationally.

The need for NBAF was delineated in Homeland Security Presidential Directive/HSPD-9, Defense of United States Agriculture and Food, January 30, 2004.  As part of the “Research and Development” requirement [(F) illustrated below], it called for the creation of “a plan to provide safe, secure, and state-of-the-art agriculture biocontainment laboratories that research and develop diagnostic capabilities for foreign animal and zoonotic diseases.”  New countermeasures for treating these diseases were also urgently needed. NBAF is a result.

U.S. Bio-Agrodefense

Click here for an overview of these six major requirements of HSPD-9. 

World According to Ag

U.S bio/agrodefense is not just about protecting America; it's about global food security as well. Although, the USDA graphic above is from 2010, it illustrates the significance of U.S. agriculture to feeding the world. The contribution today might be somewhat less, but much of the world still relies on U.S. food production.

The university's Biosecurity Research Institute — a biosafety level-3 facility — is jump-starting the bio/agro-defense research planned for NBAF even before it becomes operational.  

NBAF will attract private biotechnology companies and scientists to the Manhattan community, and is expected to bring an additional 40 businesses and laboratories and generate an economic return of $3.5 billion in its first 20 years.