Estimates of global disease burden associated with foodborne pathogens

Sara M. Pires, Brecht Devleesschauwer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapterResearchpeer-review


Estimates of burden of foodborne diseases are important for prioritizing food safety policy at national and international levels. Estimating burden of foodborne diseases is complex: It requires data from many sources and relies on many assumptions. In 2015, the World Health Organization Foodborne Disease Burden Epidemiology Reference group (WHO/FERG) published the first estimates of the global burden of foodborne disease. Results showed that in 2010, 31 foodborne pathogens and chemicals caused 600 million illnesses, 420, 000 deaths, and 33 million disability-adjusted life years globally. Children under the age of 5 and people living in the poorer areas of the world were disproportionally affected. Priority agents also varied across regions. WHO/FERG succeeded in putting food safety on the global health agenda, and encouraged countries to implement burden of disease for priority setting. Recent years have seen various national studies. Further work is required to address data gaps and disparities in national capacity to estimate the burden of foodborne disease.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFoodborne Infections and Intoxications
EditorsJ. Glenn Morris, Jr., Duc J. Vugia
Number of pages15
PublisherAcademic Press
Publication date2021
ISBN (Print)978-0-12-819519-2
Publication statusPublished - 2021
SeriesFoodborne Infections and Intoxications


  • Burden of disease
  • Cost of illness
  • Foodborne disease
  • Foodborne hazards
  • Surveillance


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