An official website of the United States government.

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you've safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Food Safety Topics

Food Safety Topics

The Food Safety Topics resources provide information across key food safety subject areas. For additional information, please refer to the Latest Reports and Assessments or  FAQ page.

Topic List

Antimicrobial Resistance                                   Bacterial Pathogens                                  Chemical Contaminants     

Food Processing & Technology                       Food Defense                                               Microbial Ecology of Biofilms

Natural Toxins                                                        Predictive Microbiology                           Food Safety Modernization Act

Preventive Food Safety Systems                   Sanitation and Quality Standards       Parasites, Viruses, and Prions

Emerging Topics                                                   Food Safety Data 

Antimicrobial Resistance

Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) resources such as reports, publications and journal article citations that focus on AMR activities, including surveillance, research and development, education, extension and outreach. These activities help determine patterns of antibiotic use in food producing animals; monitor antibiotic drug susceptibilities in food, animals, meat, poultry; and to develop best practices to reduce AMR associated risks.

Bacterial Pathogens

Learn about bacteria that cause foodborne illness either by infecting the intestinal tissues directly, or by producing bacterial toxins. This section includes food pathogens such as Campylobacter jejuni, Salmonella, E. coli , and Listeria monocytogenes.

Chemical Contaminants

Includes non-microbial contaminants such as pesticide residues, heavy metals, and other toxic substances. Learn about potential sources of contamination in the environment, during cooking preparation, and certain agricultural practices.

Food Processing and Technology

Provides information on current trends and developments in food processing.

Food Defense

The overall process of protecting the food supply from intentional contamination, includes preventive measures, surveillance, incident reporting and control.

Microbial Ecology of Biofilms

Includes online resources such as reports, agency web sites, and journal article citations.

Natural Toxins

Includes fact sheets and resource lists for aflatoxins, ciguatoxins, and scombrotoxins. These naturally-occurring toxins are produced by molds and fungi that grow on food.

Predictive Microbiology

Provides access to online resources about predictive microbiology such as reports, organizations, and journal article citations.

Food Safety Modernization Act

The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), signed into law in 2011, contains a collection of preventive food safety laws designed to protect the U.S. food supply from production to consumption.

Preventive Food Safety Systems

This section contains resources for preventive food safety systems, such as the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP), which is a process that has been established for juice, meat, poultry and seafood processing to prevent foodborne illness.

Sanitation and Quality Standards

Provides resources on guidelines, control methods, best practices, and risk reduction strategies used to enhance the microbiological quality of food and to enhance the overall safety of the food supply.

Parasites, Viruses, and Prions

Information about a spectrum of food safety pathogens including:

  • Foodborne and waterborne pathogens (Trichinella and Cyclospora);
  • Virus and prion diseases including Avian Influenza (bird flu), and Bovine spongiform; encephalopathy (mad cow disease); and 
  • Emerging viruses (Norwalk and Hepatitis A.)

Additional information about prevalence, zoonotic disease transmission, control methods, and current research areas are included.

Emerging Topics

Discover resources on new and developing areas of interest in food safety research.

Food Safety Data

Find food-safety related data from federal databases including NAL’s open access resource Ag Data Commons. Find resources on pathogen genomic data, predictive models for pathogen responses, germplasm/culture collections, and more.  Each record provides a link to the dataset, relevant publications, data dictionaries, and other useful resources.

Page Content Curated By