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Consumer safety has become a central issue of the food supply system in most countries. It encompasses a large number of interacting scientific and tech nological matters, such as agricultural practice, microbiology, chemistry, food technology, processing, handling and packaging. The techniques used in understanding and controlling contaminants and toxicity range from the most sophisticated scientific laboratory methods, through industrial engineering science to simple logical rules implemented in the kitchen. The problems of food safety, however, spread far beyond those directly occupied in food production. Public interest and concern has become acute in recent years, alerting a wide spectrum of specialists in research, education and public affairs. This series aims to present timely volumes covering all aspects of the subject. They will be up-to-date, specialist reviews written by acknowledged experts in their fields of research to express each author's own viewpoint. The readership is intended to be wide and international, and the style to be comprehensible to non-specialists, albeit professionals. The series will be of interest to food scientists and technologists working in industry, universities, polytechnics and government institutes; legislators and regulators concerned with the food supply; and specialists in agriculture, engineering, health care and consumer affairs. One of the most difficult situations to control is the contamination of food by small numbers of pathogenic micro-organisms before they multiply to give the large populations causing food poisoning when eaten.