Etiological Agents Implicated in Foodborne Illness World Wide

Heeyoung Lee1, Yohan Yoon2,*
Author Information & Copyright
1Korea Food Research Institute, Wanju 55365, Korea.
2Sookmyung Women's University, Seoul 04310, Korea.
*Corresponding Author: Yohan Yoon, Sookmyung Women's University, Seoul 04310, Korea, Republic of. E-mail:

© Copyright 2020 Korean Society for Food Science of Animal Resources. This is an Open-Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Received: Jul 31, 2020 ; Revised: Aug 23, 2020 ; Accepted: Aug 23, 2020

Published Online: Sep 03, 2020


This mini review focuses on foodborne illnesses and outbreaks caused by food-producing animals because statistical information of the foodborne illnesses is important in human health and food industry. Contaminated food results in 600 million cases of foodborne diseases and 420,000 deaths worldwide every year. The world population is currently 7.8 billion, and 56 million people die every year; of these, every year, 7.69% of people experience foodborne diseases, and 7.5% of annual deaths (56 million deaths) was died by foodborne illness in the world. A majority of such patients are affected by norovirus and Campylobacter. Listeria monocytogenes is the most fatal. In the United States, except for those caused by Campylobacter, the number of foodborne diseases did not decrease between 1997 and 2017, and cases caused by Toxoplasma gondii are still being reported (9 cases in 2017). The percentage of foodborne illnesses caused by food-producing animals was 10.4%–14.1% between 1999 and 2017 in the United States. In Europe, foodborne illnesses affect 23 million people every year and cause approximately 5,000 deaths. Europe has more Campylobacter- and Salmonella-related cases than in other countries. In Australia, the highest number of cases are due to Campylobacter, followed by Salmonella. In South Korea, E. coli followed by norovirus. Campylobacter- and C. perfringens-related cases have been reported in Japan as well. This review suggests that Campylobacter, Salmonella, L. monocytogenes, and E. coli, which are usually isolated from animal-source food products are associated with a high risk of foodborne illnesses.

Keywords: Campylobacter; foodborne illness; norovirus; L. monocytogenes; Salmonella

Journal Title Change

The name of the journal has been changed from Korean Journal for Food Science of Animal Resources to Food Science of Animal Resources from January 2019.

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