Document Detail

Constraints to microbial food safety policy: opinions from stakeholder groups along the farm to fork continuum.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  17542959     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
This exploratory qualitative study was conducted to identify constraints to microbial food safety policy in Canada and the USA from the perspective of stakeholder groups along the farm to fork continuum. Thirty-seven stakeholders participated in interviews or a focus group where semi-structured questions were used to facilitate discussion about constraints to policy development and implementation. An emergent grounded theory approach was used to determine themes and concepts that arose from the data (versus fitting the data to a hypothesis or a priori classification). Despite the plurality of stakeholders and the range of content expertise, participant perceptions emerged into five common themes, although, there were often disagreements as to the positive or negative attributes of specific concepts. The five themes included challenges related to measurement and objectives of microbial food safety policy goals, challenges arising from lack of knowledge, or problems with communication of knowledge coupled with current practices, beliefs and traditions; the complexity of the food system and the plurality of stakeholders; the economics of producing safe food and the limited resources to address the problem; and, issues related to decision-making and policy, including ownership of the problem and inappropriate inputs to the decision-making process. Responsibilities for food safety and for food policy failure were attributed to all stakeholders along the farm to fork continuum. While challenges regarding the biology of food safety were identified as constraints, a broader range of policy inputs encompassing social, economic and political considerations were also highlighted as critical to the development and implementation of effective food safety policy. Strategies to address these other inputs may require new, transdisciplinary approaches as an adjunct to the traditional science-based risk assessment model.
J M Sargeant; B Ramsingh; A Wilkins; R G Travis; D Gavrus; J W Snelgrove
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Zoonoses and public health     Volume:  54     ISSN:  1863-1959     ISO Abbreviation:  Zoonoses Public Health     Publication Date:  2007  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2007-06-04     Completed Date:  2007-08-23     Revised Date:  2009-11-19    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  101300786     Medline TA:  Zoonoses Public Health     Country:  Germany    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  177-84     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, McMaster University, 1200 Main Street West, HSC-2C15, Hamilton, ON L8N 3Z5, Canada.
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MeSH Terms
Agriculture / standards*
Consumer Product Safety*
Focus Groups
Food Industry / standards*
Food Inspection
Food Microbiology
Foodborne Diseases / economics*,  prevention & control*
Policy Making*
Risk Assessment
United States

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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