Food Contamination Sources

  • Norman G. Marriott
  • M. Wes Schilling
  • Robert B. Gravani
Part of the Food Science Text Series book series (FSTS)


Food products are rich in nutrients required by microorganisms and may become contaminated. Major contamination sources are water, air, dust, equipment, sewage, insects, rodents, and employees.

Contamination of raw materials can also occur from soil, sewage, live animals, external surfaces, and the internal organs of meat animals. Additional contamination of animal foods originates from diseased animals, although advances in health care have nearly eliminated this source. Contamination from chemical sources can occur through accidental mixing of chemical supplies with foods. Ingredients can contribute to additional microbial or chemical contamination. Contamination can be reduced through effective housekeeping and sanitation, protection of food during storage, proper disposal of garbage and litter, and protection against contact with toxic substances.


Contamination Contamination sources Cross-contamination Foods Infection 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Norman G. Marriott
    • 1
  • M. Wes Schilling
    • 2
  • Robert B. Gravani
    • 3
  1. 1.Virginia Polytechnic Institute State UniversityBlacksburgUSA
  2. 2.Department of Food ScienceMississippi State UniversityMississippiUSA
  3. 3.Department of Food ScienceCornell UniversityIthacaUSA

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