Plant Protection and Quarantine (PPQ) is a program operated by the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) of the Department of Agriculture. The program safeguards agriculture and natural resources from the risks associated with the entry, establishment and spread of animal and plant pests and noxious weeds. It develops and delivers strategic science-based regulatory programs to protect the U.S. crops and natural resources. Plant Protection and Quarantine responds to various introductions of plant pests to eradicate, suppress and contain them through several programs in cooperation with state departments of agriculture and other government agencies. Its pest detection program protects agricultural and ecological resources by insuring the early detection of harmful plant pest and weeds.