Godínez-Oviedo A, Sampedro F, Bowman JP, Garcés-Vega FJ, Hernández-Iturriaga M. 2022. Risk ranking of food categories associated with Salmonella enterica contamination in the central region of Mexico. Risk Anal, DOI: 10.1111/risa.13907.
To prevent and control foodborne diseases, there is a fundamental need to identify the foods that are most likely to cause illness. The goal of this study was to rank 25 commonly consumed food products associated with Salmonella enterica contamination in the Central Region of Mexico. A multicriteria decision analysis (MCDA) framework was developed to obtain an S. enterica risk score for each food product based on four criteria: probability of exposure to S. enterica through domestic food consumption (Se); S. enterica growth potential during home storage (Sg); per capita consumption (Pcc); and food attribution of S. enterica outbreak (So). Risk scores were calculated by the equation Se*W1+Sg*W2+Pcc*W3+So*W4, where each criterion was assigned a normalized value (1–5) and the relative weights (W) were defined by 22 experts’ opinion. Se had the largest effect on the risk score being the criterion with the highest weight (35%; IC95% 20%–60%), followed by So (24%; 5%–50%), Sg (23%; 10%–40%), and Pcc (18%; 10%–35%). The results identified chicken (4.4 ± 0.6), pork (4.2 ± 0.6), and beef (4.2 ± 0.5) as the highest risk foods, followed by seed fruits (3.6 ± 0.5), tropical fruits (3.4 ± 0.4), and dried fruits and nuts (3.4 ± 0.5), while the food products with the lowest risk were yogurt (2.1 ± 0.3), chorizo (2.1 ± 0.4), and cream (2.0 ± 0.3). Approaches with expert-based weighting and equal weighting showed good correlation (R2 = 0.96) and did not show significant differences among the ranking order in the top 20 tier. This study can help risk managers select interventions and develop targeted surveillance programs against S. enterica in high-risk food products.