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Statistics: Food Safety Investigations

Various triggers can initiate a food safety investigation, which is the first step in a food recall. One of these is a consumer complaint. Other triggers include reports by public health officials, company-initiated concerns, and reports from the CFIA's international partner organizations. The CFIA's regular inspection and testing/sampling programs can also trigger an investigation.

On average, the CFIA conducts 3,000 food safety investigations each year. The goal of a food safety investigation is to determine whether a food safety hazard exists, assess the nature and extent of the issue, and take appropriate actions to eliminate or minimize potential risks to consumers.

To find out more about food safety investigations, please consult our fact sheet.

Consumer Food Safety Investigations (April 2006 - March 2011)

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Consumer Food Safety Investigations
Image - Consumer Food Safety Investigations (April 2006 - March 2011)

Consumer Food Safety Investigations by Hazard (April 2006 - March 2011)

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Consumer Food Safety Investigations by Hazard
Image - Consumer Food Safety Investigations by Hazard (April 2006 - March 2011)

Glossary

Undeclared allergen: A food product contains ingredients such as peanuts, milk or eggs that are not identified on the label and that can cause adverse reactions in people who are allergic to the item.

Chemical: A food product contains chemical residues such as lead, mercury or pesticides that, at certain levels, can affect human health.

Extraneous material: A food product contains material from an outside source, such as metal, glass or hair. These are not necessarily a risk to human health.

Microbiological: A food product is contaminated by micro-organisms, such as bacteria, viruses or parasites, which have the potential to cause illness.

Other: A food product is of concern due to the presence of marine biotoxins or non-permitted food ingredients; or due to nutrition concerns, irradiation or other health concerns; or tampering.