Zero tolerance rules in food safety and quality
In this introduction to the special section on zero tolerance rules, we identity examples from the known literature, which focus almost exclusively on deviant behavior. In contrast, we assembled papers that focus on zero tolerance as a characteristic of an increasing number of public and private rules that govern and shape the agrifood system. The contributions to this section illustrate the importance of an interdisciplinary approach for the conceptualization and exploration of zero tolerance rules, as well as an examination of the impact of zero on a range of value chain stakeholders including consumers. A thread running through the articles is that a society's culture, and the political economy in which it is embedded, matter. Moreover, the authors show that the meaning of "zero" is ambiguous and application of "zero" is problematic at best. Perhaps most important is the argument that absolute safety is simply an illusion. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.
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