Microbiological Safety of Foods

Kumar Venkitanarayanan, Anup Kollanoor-Johny, Michael P. Doyle

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


44The microbiological safety of foods is a major concern to consumers and to the food industry. Despite considerable progress made in technology, consumer education, and regulations, food safety continues to be a major challenge to our public health and economy. During the last decade, food safety received considerable attention due to the emergence of several new foodborne pathogens and the involvement of foods that traditionally have been considered safe, in many foodborne disease outbreaks. Further, industrialization of the food supply through mass production, distribution, increased globalization, and consumer demands for preservative-free, convenience foods and ready-to-eat meals highlights the significance of the microbial safety of foods. Recently, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported an estimated 48 million cases of foodborne illnesses, with 130, 000 hospitalizations and 3000 deaths in the United States annually.1 Besides the public health impact, outbreaks of food-borne illness impose major economic losses to both the food industry and society. The annual estimated cost of foodborne illnesses accounts for approximately $152 billion with nearly $32 billion attributed to contaminated produce.2, 3 Moreover, isolation of antibiotic-resistant foodborne bacteria as etiologic agents implicated in outbreaks has been increasingly reported. According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), 35 foodborne outbreaks during the last three decades were caused by bacteria resistant to at least one antibiotic.4 The various microbiological hazards associated with foods can be classified broadly as bacterial, viral, fungal, and parasitic.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationHandbook of Nutrition and Food
Subtitle of host publicationThird Edition
PublisherCRC Press
Number of pages37
ISBN (Electronic)9781466505728
ISBN (Print)9781466505711
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 by Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.


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