SUMMER READING SALE! 30% off all eBooks until Sept 2nd! Risk on the Table: Food Production, Health, and the Environment | BERGHAHN BOOKS
Join our Email List Berghahn Books Logo

berghahn New York · Oxford

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Youtube
  • Instagram
Risk on the Table: Food Production, Health, and the Environment

View Table of Contents

Volume 21

Environment in History: International Perspectives

Email Newsletters

Sign up for our email newsletters to get customized updates on new Berghahn publications.

Click here to select your preferences

Risk on the Table

Food Production, Health, and the Environment

Edited by Angela N. H. Creager and Jean-Paul Gaudillière
Afterword by Deborah Fitzgerald

366 pages, 18 illus., bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-78920-944-0 $145.00/£107.00 / Hb / Published (January 2021)

ISBN  978-1-80539-736-6 $39.95/£31.95 / Pb / Not Yet Published (November 2024)

eISBN 978-1-78920-945-7 eBook

View CartYour country: - edit Request a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format)Recommend to your LibraryAvailable in GOBI®


“The editors have brought together enough international work to form a broad picture of changes in the global food system. This is an extremely welcome view of how those changes were received in different places at different times.” • Technology and Culture

“This collection draws insightful genealogies of a persistently virulent problem: food safety. The book brings together a series of well-written and exciting historical cases that together create a picture of the scientific and political struggles for food safety and their obstacles.” • Alexander von Schwerin, Max Planck Institute for the History of Science

“‘Risk on the Table’ is a perfectly apt title for a book which deals with a major concern of modern societies: What shall we eat? Combining perspectives of ‘food risk’ as a matter of health concerns; environmental issues; and economic, social and employment problems, this book is truly innovative.” • Karin Zachmann, The Technical University of Munich


Over the last century, the industrialization of agriculture and processing technologies have made food abundant and relatively inexpensive for much of the world’s population. Simultaneously, pesticides, nitrates, and other technological innovations intended to improve the food supply’s productivity and safety have generated new, often poorly understood risks for consumers and the environment. From the proliferation of synthetic additives to the threat posed by antibiotic-resistant bacteria, the chapters in Risk on the Table zero in on key historical cases in North America and Europe that illuminate the history of food safety, highlighting the powerful tensions that exists among scientific understandings of risk, policymakers’ decisions, and cultural notions of “pure” food.

Angela N. H. Creager is the Thomas M. Siebel Professor in the History of Science at Princeton University, where she directed the Shelby Cullom Davis Center for Historical Studies from 2016–20. Her current work focuses on the role of genetic tests in environmental science and regulation during the late twentieth century.

Jean-Paul Gaudillière is a Senior Researcher at the Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale, and a Professor at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris. He is currently working on the transition from “international public health” to “global health,” with a specific focus on developments in East Africa and South Asia.

Subject: Environmental Studies (General)History: 20th Century to PresentFood & Nutrition


Download ToC (PDF)

Back to Top

Library Recommendation Form

Dear Librarian,

I would like to recommend Risk on the Table Food Production, Health, and the Environment for the library. Please include it in your next purchasing review with my strong recommendation. The RRP is: $145.00

I recommend this title for the following reasons:

BENEFIT FOR THE LIBRARY: This book will be a valuable addition to the library's collection.

REFERENCE: I will refer to this book for my research/teaching work.

STUDENT REFERRAL: I will regularly refer my students to the book to assist their studies.

OWN AFFILIATION: I am an editor/contributor to this book or another book in the Series (where applicable) and/or on the Editorial Board of the Series, of which this volume is part.