The seriousness of these biological hazards varies greatly. When biological hazards result in food-borne illnesses, these illnesses are generally classified as either infections or intoxications.
Bacterial pathogens comprise the majority of reported food-borne disease outbreaks and cases. Common bacterial causes of food-borne illness are Salmonella, Listeria monocytogenes, Shigella, Staphylococcus aureus, Clostridium perfringens, Bacillus cereus and Escherichia coli 0157:H7.
Most foodborne illness in the world is bacterial in origin.
Enteric virus can be food-borne, water-borne or transmitted from a person or from animals. Norovirus or Norwalk and Norwalk like viruses have been the most common source of foodborne illness.
Parasitic infections are commonly associated with undercooking meat products or cross-contamination of ready-to-eat food. Parasites that can cause foodborne illness include Trichinella spiralis, Anisakis simplex, Giardia duodenalis, and Toxoplasma gondii.
A food-borne infection is a disease that results from eating food containing living harmful microorganisms.
One of the most frequently reported disease of this type is salmonellosis, which result from the consumption of food contaminated with live pathogenic Salmonella.
Most biological hazards are inactivated or killed by adequate cooking. Sufficient cooling keeps their numbers to a minimum.
Food-borne biological hazards