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Council to Improve Foodborne Outbreak Response

Council to Improve Foodborne Outbreak Response

The Guidelines for Foodborne Disease Outbreak Response are targeted at local, state, and federal agencies and provide model practices used in foodborne disease outbreaks, including planning, detection, investigation, control, and prevention. The guidelines are intended to give all agencies a common foundation from which to work and to provide examples of the key activities that should occur during the response to outbreaks of foodborne disease.

Chapters in the guidelines include:

For more information, please visit the CIFOR Guidelines Project Web page. More »

Council to Improve Foodborne Outbreak Response (CIFOR)


Foodborne and other enteric diseases affect millions of Americans each year. Many public health and other agencies are involved in efforts to mitigate the effects of these illnesses on public health and the economy. Outbreak identification and investigation is one of the key areas where multidisciplinary public health agencies take the lead. The epidemiology of foodborne and diarrheal diseases is always changing—the result of changing diagnostic and subtyping capabilities in laboratories; newly recognized and emerging pathogens; changes in food production, distribution, processing, and consumption patterns; demographic shifts; and many other factors. To successfully manage foodborne outbreak challenges, public health agencies must constantly adapt.

CIFOR was created to help develop model programs and processes that will facilitate the investigation and control of foodborne disease outbreaks. CIFOR's agenda includes improving the performance and coordination of relevant local, state, and federal public health agencies involved in epidemiology, environmental health, laboratory sciences, and regulatory affairs. Helpful tools may include the development of resource banks, model program guidelines, performance measures, and other standards that address foodborne illness surveillance, investigation (environmental, laboratory, and epidemiological), and control.

Project Description

The Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) and the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) co-chair the Council to Improve Foodborne Outbreak Response (CIFOR) to develop guidelines, a repository for resources and tools, and performance measures for response to enteric illness. CIFOR includes representatives from CSTE, NACCHO, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO), the National Environmental Health Association (NEHA), the Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

For more information, please visit