The U.K.’s Food Standards Agency (FSA) has reportedly been systematically checking for Twitter hashtags such as #sick and #barf in order to identify potential foodborne illness outbreaks. According to the agency’s chief scientific adviser, FSA is working with the National Health Service to monitor certain tweets via special software as a way of getting on…

Social media platforms such as Yelp and Twitter have significantly altered the online landscape for restaurants. Now anyone with an Internet connection and an opinion can broadcast their thoughts to others interested in visiting. But what if public health officials could use Yelp and Twitter to track people mentioning foodborne illnesses online to detect outbreaks…

“With the ubiquitous nature of social media in current society, health and food safety risk communicators should be taking advantage of these platforms to provide information and engage the public,” reads a recent article in the journal Perspectives in Public Health. To help health information providers navigate social media, researchers at North Carolina State University…

This article originally appeared in the October/November 2013 edition of Food Safety Magazine. The author has provided a number of references listed at the end of the article. “GMO health risks,”[1] “The sweet lowdown: Exposing the unhealthy truth about sugar,”[2] “Is high-fructose corn syrup bad for you?”[3] and “Chemical cuisine. Learn about food additives”[4]…

According to a recent survey, food safety was the most memorable food story in the media last year. Meanwhile, with over 100 million users and 2 billion “tweets” per quarter, Twitter is taking the social media landscape by force. Unsurprisingly, there’s a lot of discussion about the food system in the 140-character “twitterverse.”

Here is …

Social media sites like Twitter and Facebook are growing at a staggering rate. According to The Nielson Company, consumers spent 82 percent more time using social networking sites this year than last. Were Facebook a country, its 400 million users would make up the third largest in the world, right behind China and India. Twitter …