JBS: Cyber-attack hits world's largest meat supplier10 Jun 2021
Last week, the world’s largest meat supplier, JBS, experienced a cyberattack that temporarily shut down some of its operations in Australia, Canada and the U.S., leading to fears of a meat shortage. In the days following the attack, the Brazilian meat processor resumed its operations, but various media outlets reported cybersecurity expert testimony that the company still had vulnerabilities that exposed it to future attacks of this kind.
The FBI attributed this attack on JBS SA to REvil, a Russia-linked group that is known for large ransomware demands. Ransomware is malware that halts system functionality through the encryption of files. Groups that issue the malware hold these systems hostage until the intended victim makes a payment to unlock them.
Freezing JBS’s systems is a big deal for dozens of retailers and foodservice locations worldwide. In the U.S. alone, JBS processes about one-quarter of the country's beef and one-fifth of its pork. Bloomberg reported that this attack paused one-fifth of the company’s meat production as JBS's five largest beef plants are located in that country.
JBS said that data for customers, suppliers and employees were not compromised during the attack.
While the food and beverage sector is not a traditional target for malware attacks, it is becoming one in part due to the industry’s low barrier to entry. Manufacturing, supply chain and agriculture are not known for robust cybersecurity infrastructures due to lack of investment in technology and little regulation, and attackers are paying attention to this relatively easy point of entry into critical infrastructure. REvil specifically published an online interview stating that the agriculture sector is now its primary target for ransomware attacks, NPR reported.
With such quantities of meat flowing through these processing facilities, having operations frozen through halting operational software is something that major food suppliers like JBS need to bear in mind going forward. It is not known whether JBS paid the ransom for this most recent attack, however, it is likely that the company will be spending more on its cybersecurity going forward.
A 2018 audit of the company’s IT infrastructure and security systems revealed exploitable weaknesses in the company’s technology, Beef Magazine reported. While the multinational company did not take sufficient measures to shore up its systems at that time, this recent attack will likely have far-reaching and global implications as to how JBS views the importance of its cybersecurity.
The company’s South American operations were not disrupted by this attack on its network.
Fortuna Cools develops sustainable coolers made from coconut husks
9 Jun 2021
Filipino startup Fortuna Cools announced the closure of a seed funding round led by the investment arm of the Asian Development Bank ADB Ventures and Katapult Ocean Fund with additional participation from Pasudeco Development Corporation, the Manila An...Read more
Cultivated meat firm Magic Valley to be first in cultivated lamb
8 Jun 2021
Australian-based startup, Magic Valley is the “world’s first cultured lamb company,” according to a press release from the company. This startup is working to cultivate lamb protein using animal cells grown in a nutrient-rich culture but without the us...Read more
Frozen food and e-commerce emerge as Asia’s COVID-19 retail winners
7 Jun 2021
Frozen food and e-commerce channels have been two of the food industry success stories to emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic and nation-wide lockdowns that triggered significant shifts in shoppers’ behaviour in Asian markets.Read more
Nestlé’s Sweet Earth moves into snacking aisle with plant-based jerky
2 Jun 2021
Nestlé-owned Sweet Earth Foods has a new plant-based jerky on supermarket shelves that come in two flavors: Spicy Kung Pao Jerky and Sweet Korean BBQ. While the Kung Pao flavor is now on sale, the company announced that the Sweet Korean variety will be...Read more
European Parliament allows ‘buttery’ adjectives on dairy-free products
28 May 2021
In a u-turn from its policy last fall, the European Parliament dropped Amendment 171 and will allow manufacturers to use descriptive terms like “buttery” and “creamy” to describe plant-based products.Read more
Cultured meat startup Eat Just gets $170M
27 May 2021
Eat Just announced its Good Meat division, which is responsible for producing the world’s first commercially-available cultured meat product, received $170 million in funding from UBS O’Connor, Graphene Ventures and K3 Ventures. With this influx in fun...Read more
Plant-based chicken maker Daring raises $40M in latest funding round
26 May 2021
Plant-based chicken making Daring announced it closed a $40 million Series B funding round led by D1 Capital Partners. Additional participation came from Canadian rapper Drake as well as existing investors Maveron and Palm Tree Crew. This funding round...Read more
Access in the spotlight this World Hunger Day
21 May 2021
The Hunger Project has made huge progress in reducing global hunger, but Covid-19 has worsened poverty and limited food availability in many communities. This World Hunger Day, the focus is on access – to food, but also to essential resources like educ...Read more
Equinom and Dipasa partner to produce a high-protein sesame seed
20 May 2021
Israeli plant-based nutrition company Equinom teamed up with Mexican sesame processor Dipasa to create a high-protein sesame concentrate. Equinom will use its AI technology to develop the new variety while Dipasa will process it and deliver it to the m...Read more
Indian food brand gives Ayurvedic ingredients global appeal
20 May 2021
Ayurvedic food brand Sattviko says it wants to spark an Indian superfood revolution by using traditional Ayurvedic ingredients in modern, convenient formats.Read more
Are you a supplier?
Here's what we can do for you
- Generate quality leads for your business
- Stay visible for 365 days of the year
- Receive product inquiries and respond to meeting requests directly
- Improve company online presence through Search Engine Optimisation