Standard protecting food from malicious and deliberate attack revised

27 November 2014

BSI, the business standards company has revised its PAS (Publicly Available Specification) that safeguards food and drink against malicious tampering. PAS 96 Defending food and drink was first published in 2008 as a guide to Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) which identifies and manages risks in supply chains.

The food and drinks industry is used to handling natural errors or mishaps within the food supply chain, but the threat of deliberate attack, although not new, is growing with the changing political climate. Ideological groups can see this as an entry point to commit sabotage or further criminal activity.

Therefore the impacts of threats to the food supply chain are great. They can include direct losses when responding to the act of sabotage, paying compensation to affected producers and suppliers, customers and distributors. Trade embargoes can be imposed by trading partners and long term reputational damage can occur as a result of an attack.

David Fatscher, Head of Market Development for Sustainability at BSI said: “It is not just events such as the horse meat scandal and the subsequent Elliot Review that bring the need for clarity in the food supply chain. As issues such as Food Terrorism become more of a reality, businesses need to be extra vigilant and confident that they have set up the basic practices on keeping their supply chains sabotage free. PAS 96 was specifically designed to minimize the risks associated with deliberate attack, enabling businesses to stay one step ahead and not suffer damage to their reputations.”

The revision of PAS 96 includes the introduction of the Threat Assessment Critical Control Points (TACCP) risk management methodology. The TAACP process will help businesses of all sizes avoid and mitigate threats to their food supply chain. PAS 96 was sponsored by Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Food Standards Agency.

What PAS 96 can do:

  • Introduce the TAACP process
  • Offer scenarios on how TAACP may be applied in existing businesses
  • Provide guidance to food business managers through approaches and procedures to improve the resilience of supply chains to fraud or other forms of attack
  • Aim to assure the authenticity of food by minimizing the chance of an attack and mitigating the consequences of a successful attack

PAS 96 will benefit all organizations, but may be of particular use to managers of small and medium sized food enterprises who may not have easy access to specialist advice. It is of value to those involved in manufacturing, purchasing, supplying and selling food products.

Some of the organizations involved in the development of PAS 96 include: Agrico UK Limited, Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra), Food Standards Agency, Global Food Security Programme, Heineken UK, J Sainsbury plc., McDonald’s Europe and Tesco.


Some of the other organizations involved in the development of PAS 96 include: Bakkavor, Cargill, GIST Limited, Hilton Food Group plc., Leatherhead Food Research, Raspberry Blonde and SSAFE