How the 2002 Bioterrorism Act Affects Climate-Controlled Storage in Austin, MN

As a provider of frozen, refrigerated, and dry warehouse storage for the food industry, Minnesota Freezer Warehouse Company (MFWC) follows national and international standards to prevent the spread of food-borne illness, keep products at peak quality, and eliminate the potential for acts of bioterrorism. In 2002, the U.S. government enacted the Public Health Safety and Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act, otherwise known as the Bioterrorism Act. This law gives the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) authorization to take actions to protect the national food supply, including setting requirements and guidelines for food storage warehouses, importers, and distributors. MFWC adheres to the Bioterrorism Act rules for the registration, notice, and recording of imported foods from coast to coast and border to border. Our climate-controlled storage in Austin, MN, supports quality and safety in the food industry, not only by following multiple import, export, and storage standards and regulations, but also by meeting government requirements, including those outlined in the Bioterrorism Act.

For climate-controlled storage warehouses like ours, the Bioterrorism Act plays a broad role compared to other strict industrial requirements; it establishes very important processes that protect our communities and help us find a baseline for imported foods and other products.

Because we typically import, store, and export goods that have already passed through international border inspections, we don’t often deal with accountability issues set by the Bioterrorism Act, but we do maintain responsibility to protect food supply under the codes set by it.

Food Facilities Guidelines

  1. Registration: All domestic and foreign food facilities that process products coming into the country are required to register with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This includes any products for human or animal consumption. With a complete record of all registered facilities, the FDA can pinpoint locations of affected food import, contamination trails, and even sources of disease.
  2. Prior Notice: After they are registered, facilities must file a prior notice to import, which provides advanced notice of high-risk shipments. This notice should be given no more than ten days prior and no less than two hours for land by road, four hours for air or land by rail, or eight hours by water.
  3. Record Establishment: Registered facilities are also required to establish and maintain recording systems that the FDA finds adequate to properly track import history. This includes the identification of immediate and previous sources, product types, import systems and pathways, and receiving employees.
  4. Detention: The FDA is authorized to detain any imported food products if a facility has evidence of contamination or threat of a food product posing serious harmful effects to human or animal health. This administrative detention can be enacted with or without registration, prior notice given, or the proper records in place.

Climate-Controlled Storage

MFWC provides comprehensive climate-controlled storage in Austin, MN, and meets international standards and government regulations. To learn more about our services or to get started with us today, contact MFWC at (507) 373-1477 or


Albert Lea
820 E. 13th Street
PO Box 86
Albert Lea, MN 56007-0086

PHONE: 507-373-1477
TOLL FREE: 844-373-1477
FAX: 507-373-2174

1907 14th Street N.E.
P.O. Box 475
Austin, Minnesota 55912-0475

PHONE: 507-437-1982
FAX: 507-437-1892