Seventy-six million cases of foodborne disease occur each year in the United States alone. Medical and lost productivity costs of the most common pathogens are estimated to be $5.6–9.4 billion. Product recalls, whether from foodborne illness or spoilage, result in added costs to manufacturers in a variety of ways. These may include expenses associated with lawsuits from real or allegedly stricken individuals and lawsuits from shorted customers. Other costs include those associated with efforts involved in finding the source of the contamination and eliminating it and include time when lines are shut down and therefore non-productive, additional non-routine testing, consultant fees, time and personnel required to overhaul the entire food safety system, lost market share to competitors, and the cost associated with redesign of the factory and redesign or acquisition of more hygienic equipment. The cost associated with an effective quality assurance plan is well worth the effort to prevent the situations described.
KeywordsListeria Monocytogenes Clostridium Perfringens Foodborne Disease Foodborne Illness Quantifiable Cost
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