Food Emergency Response Network (FERN)
integrates the nation's food-testing laboratories at the local, state, and federal levels into a network that is able to respond to emergencies involving biological, chemical, or radiological contamination of food. The FERN structure is organized to ensure federal and state inter-agency participation and cooperation in the formation, development, and operation of the network.
FERN provides for an early means of detecting threat agents in the American food supply
FERN prepares the nation's laboratories to be able to respond to food-related emergencies
FERN offers significant surge capacity that will strengthen the nation's response towards widespread complex emergencies, intentional or inadvertent related to agents in food
The FERN network of laboratories enhances the ability of the country to restore confidence in the food supply following a threat or an actual emergency targeting the nation's food supply