What's Cooking? From GM Food to Nanofood: Regulating Risk and Trade in Europe

Naomi Salmon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Focusing on the interests of the end-consumer, and using the emergent ‘nanofood’ sector as the primary reference point, this paper provides a commentary on the efficacy of Community food safety law. Looking behind the public relations patter that peppers both industry and institutional commentaries, this investigation considers the particular challenges presented by food-related applications of new technologies – specifically nanotechnology. The aim of the analysis is to distinguish the rhetoric of ostensibly precautionary food safety law from the reality of market-led regulation in order to evaluate the consumer-protective value of ‘economic precaution’ in the uncertain world of contemporary food risks. Introducing the concept of ‘ethical precaution’, the discussion concludes with a comment on the need for a more holistic and consumer-centric approach to the assessment and management of (uncertain) technological risks.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)97-115
Number of pages19
JournalEnvironmental Law Review
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 01 Nov 2009


  • Genetic modification
  • GMOs
  • nanotechnology
  • food safety
  • consumer protection


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