Research Topic

Exposure Pathways, Characterization and Risk Assessment of Chemical Contaminants in the Food Chain

About this Research Topic

With increasing global food demand, it is an important responsibility of all producers, regulators, distributors, and consumers to ensure food safety. One of the biggest threats to the safety of our food is the unintentional and undesirable presence of chemical contaminants. Both inorganic and organic pollutants enter the food chain due to various reasons including natural contamination, like the presence of arsenic in soil and irrigation water resulting in accumulation in crops, and anthropogenic contamination, like pesticide or rodenticide accumulation in crops due to its widespread use. Apart from contamination during primary production, contaminates can also enter the food chain during storage, transportation, handling, and most importantly during cooking and processing.

Chemical contaminants present in food may be harmful to health at certain levels. To manage the human health risks from these contaminants it is important to determine the exposure pathways and undertake exposure and risk assessments to help determine regulatory controls.

Exposure assessment depends on
a) identification of potential receptors and exposed populations;
b) identification of current and future exposure scenarios; and
c) quantification of the magnitude, duration, and frequency of exposure.

Factors that contribute to the performance of an exposure assessment involve
a) quantifying the rate of intake based on appropriate methods;
b) accounting for bioaccessibility and bioavailability;
c) selection of measured versus modeled exposure concentrations; and
d) use of probabilistic methods over deterministic methods.

This Research Topic aims to explore new approaches and findings that have evolved around exposure and risk assessment of chemical contaminants in the food chain. We welcome both original research and review articles on the following themes, including (but not limited to):

a) characterization of exposure pathways and estimation of exposure concentrations of chemical contaminants in the food chain
b) determination of appropriate exposure factors like food habit, behaviors, and activities like cooking practices, to use in the calculation of exact intake/dose
c) innovative methods/techniques to determine bioavailability and bioaccessibility of contaminant/s in specific food matrices
b) translation of the current knowledge on exposure to a chemical contaminant in food into basic principles for regulatory control


Keywords: chemical contaminant, exposure pathway, exposure, bioavailability, bioaccessibility, food chain, deterministic methods, regulatory control


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.

With increasing global food demand, it is an important responsibility of all producers, regulators, distributors, and consumers to ensure food safety. One of the biggest threats to the safety of our food is the unintentional and undesirable presence of chemical contaminants. Both inorganic and organic pollutants enter the food chain due to various reasons including natural contamination, like the presence of arsenic in soil and irrigation water resulting in accumulation in crops, and anthropogenic contamination, like pesticide or rodenticide accumulation in crops due to its widespread use. Apart from contamination during primary production, contaminates can also enter the food chain during storage, transportation, handling, and most importantly during cooking and processing.

Chemical contaminants present in food may be harmful to health at certain levels. To manage the human health risks from these contaminants it is important to determine the exposure pathways and undertake exposure and risk assessments to help determine regulatory controls.

Exposure assessment depends on
a) identification of potential receptors and exposed populations;
b) identification of current and future exposure scenarios; and
c) quantification of the magnitude, duration, and frequency of exposure.

Factors that contribute to the performance of an exposure assessment involve
a) quantifying the rate of intake based on appropriate methods;
b) accounting for bioaccessibility and bioavailability;
c) selection of measured versus modeled exposure concentrations; and
d) use of probabilistic methods over deterministic methods.

This Research Topic aims to explore new approaches and findings that have evolved around exposure and risk assessment of chemical contaminants in the food chain. We welcome both original research and review articles on the following themes, including (but not limited to):

a) characterization of exposure pathways and estimation of exposure concentrations of chemical contaminants in the food chain
b) determination of appropriate exposure factors like food habit, behaviors, and activities like cooking practices, to use in the calculation of exact intake/dose
c) innovative methods/techniques to determine bioavailability and bioaccessibility of contaminant/s in specific food matrices
b) translation of the current knowledge on exposure to a chemical contaminant in food into basic principles for regulatory control


Keywords: chemical contaminant, exposure pathway, exposure, bioavailability, bioaccessibility, food chain, deterministic methods, regulatory control


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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Submission Deadlines

22 January 2021 Abstract
31 May 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

22 January 2021 Abstract
31 May 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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