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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract - Environmental Issues

Research Priorities for Coordinating Management of Food Safety and Water Quality


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 37 No. 4, p. 1411-1418
    unlockOPEN ACCESS
    Received: Nov 29, 2007

    * Corresponding author(s): David.Crohn@ucr.edu
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  1. David M. Crohn *a and
  2. Mary L. Bianchib
  1. a Dep. of Environmental Sciences, Univ. of California, Riverside, CA 92521
    b Univ. of California Cooperative Extension, San Luis Obispo County, 2156 Sierra Way, Suite C, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401


Efforts to exclude disease organisms from farms growing irrigated lettuce and leafy vegetables on California's central coast are conflicting with traditionally accepted strategies to protect surface water quality. To begin resolving this dilemma, over 100 officials, researchers, and industry representatives gathered in April 2007 to set research priorities that could lead to effective co-management of both food safety and water quality. Following the meeting, research priorities were refined and ordered by way of a Delphi process completed by 35 meeting participants. Although water quality and food safety experts conceptualized the issues differently, there were no deep disagreements with respect to research needs. Top priority was given to investigating the fate of pathogens potentially present on farms. Intermediate priorities included characterizing the influence of specific farm management practices on food safety and improving our understanding of vector processes. A scientific subdiscipline focusing on competing risks is needed to characterize and resolve conflicts between human and environmental health.

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Copyright © 2008. American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, Soil Science SocietyAmerican Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America