The purpose of this paper is to review the nature and extent of foodborne diseases in India due to chemical and microbial agents.
The scientific investigations/reports on outbreak of foodborne diseases in India for the past 29 (1980‐2009) years due to adulteration, chemical, and microbiological contamination have been reviewed. Reported scientific information on foodborne pathogens detected and quantified in Indian foods has also been reviewed.
A total of 37 outbreaks involving 3,485 persons who have been affected due to food poisoning have been reported in India. Although the common forms of foodborne diseases are those due to bacterial contamination of foods, however, higher numbers of deaths have been observed due to chemical contaminants in foods.
A national foodborne disease surveillance system needs to be developed in India in order to enable effective detection, control and prevention of foodborne disease outbreaks.
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