Study shows US not “safest food in the world”

May 28, 2008

Late last year, two professors from Canada’s University of Regina posed the question – how safe is Canada’s food supply compared to other countries?

The Food Safety Performance World Ranking 2008, the first study of its kind in the world, was conducted by Sylvain Charlebois, a marketing professor in the University of Regina’s Paul J. Hill School of Business, and Chris Yost, a biology professor.

The study benchmarks Canada’s food safety performance relative to that of other Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries in four major areas: consumer affairs; biosecurity and trades; governance and recalls; and traceability and management.

Results of the study show the overall rankings of OECD countries are:

1. United Kingdom – Superior
2. Japan – Superior
3. Denmark – Superior
4. Australia – Superior
5. Canada – Superior
6. Finland – Average
7. United States – Average
8. Switzerland – Average
9. Norway – Average
10. Germany Average
11. Italy – Average
12. Netherlands – Average
13. Sweden – Average
14. Austria – Average
15. France – Poor
16. Belgium – Poor
17. Ireland – Poor

Charlebois and Yost hope the Food Safety Performance World Ranking 2008 will help academics, practitioners and policymakers to evaluate and strengths and weaknesses of food safety systems and processes both in Canada and beyond. The study is the first project by the Research Network in Food Systems, a not-for-profit research group based out of the University of Regina. The Research Network in Food Systems will produce a follow-up study in the next couple of years.

Source: The Food Safety Performance World Ranking 2008,


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