Research Topic

Microbiological Risks in Food Processing

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About this Research Topic

Foodborne diseases cause significant morbidity and mortality worldwide and represent an important barrier to socioeconomic development. Recent global analyses from WHO estimate that, annually, 1 in 10 people fall sick after consuming contaminated food, leading to 420,000 deaths. In Europe alone, parasites, ...

Foodborne diseases cause significant morbidity and mortality worldwide and represent an important barrier to socioeconomic development. Recent global analyses from WHO estimate that, annually, 1 in 10 people fall sick after consuming contaminated food, leading to 420,000 deaths. In Europe alone, parasites, toxins and allergens present in food are responsible for more than 23 million cases of illness and 5,000 deaths every year, while in low income regions, these diseases have an even higher impact.

There are several factors driving these statistics, including increasing numbers of immunocompromised individuals, aging population, climate change, emerging antibiotic-resistant pathogens, and a continuous rise of foodborne infections caused by pathogens such as Campylobacter spp., Listeria monocytogenes and norovirus. Despite these concerning trends, some evidence suggests that, at least in developed countries, the food supply chain may be safer than it has ever been. Enhanced safety is a result of increased knowledge of foodborne illnesses and availability of better methods for isolation, identification and molecular typing. Such developments have made it easier to identify outbreaks and cases that may have gone unnoticed in the past.

This Research Topic aims to gather knowledge on the factors affecting microbial interactions with food products and processes, from farm to fork. Specifically, this collection has a focus on the selection and implementation of appropriate measures to effectively control (new) microbiological risks in food processing. We welcome contributions that address themes such as:

• The response of food pathogens to environmental factors in food systems
• How the food matrix influences the survival of pathogens during processing and storage conditions.
• The opportunities and challenges offered by innovative food processing technologies
• The factors which promote the colonization and survival of specific microorganisms in food processing environments
• The factors that prompt certain strains to cause disease in humans


Keywords: Foodborne disease, Microbiology, Microbiological risk, Food processing, Sustainable food processing, Pathogens, Environmental sustainability, Food matrix, Innovative technologies


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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