Globalization of the food supply means new food-safety risks and previously controlled risks can be introduced into countries, and contaminated food can be spread across greater geographic areas. Food-safety concerns may reduce demand for certain products, alter international food trade patterns, and limit market access for some exporters.

International Trade and Food Safety: Economic Theory and Case Studies

present challenges for policymakers to guard and/or enhance national food supplies.

ERS conducts analysis of global food safety that includes the interplay of regulation and marketing incentives in promoting food safety; labeling and traceability; and impacts of specific foodborne illness outbreaks traced to imports. ERS maintains a set of data on phytosanitary regulation of U.S. fresh fruit and vegetable imports.  The agency's research has included analysis of potential risks associated with food imports from China.