Risk Ranking for Foodborne Microbial Hazards in New Zealand: Burden of Disease Estimates


Address correspondence to Robin J. Lake, Food Programme, ESR, P.O. Box 29-181, Christchurch, New Zealand; tel: (3) 3516019; fax: (3) 3150010; rob.lake@esr.cri.nz.


Priority setting for food safety management at a national level requires risks to be ranked according to defined criteria. In this study, two approaches (disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) and cost of illness (COI)) were used to generate estimates of the burden of disease for certain potentially foodborne diseases (campylobacteriosis, salmonellosis, listeriosis (invasive, perinatal, and nonperinatal), infection with Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC), yersiniosis, and norovirus infection) and their sequelae in New Zealand. A modified Delphi approach was used to estimate the food-attributable proportion for these diseases. The two approaches gave a similar ranking for the selected diseases, with campylobacteriosis and its sequelae accounting for the greatest proportion of the overall burden of disease by far.