New technologies, new legal/regulatory authority and heightened consumer demand for safer foods are changing the way that food companies view and respond to food safety. As public authorities have developed methods to better link illnesses to foods at the point of sale, the costs (in fines, litigation, and reputation) to associated brands have risen. Some food companies are responding to the challenges and opportunities that better information presents with novel supply chain contracts (such as those encouraged by the Global Food Safety Initiative) that improve traceability and accountability for all actors. Critical to any of these supply chain contracts is the proper identification of hazards, especially for high-risk foods and practices, as well as for the interventions used to control contamination. These data are critical to strengthening economic incentives for adoption of improved, science-based food safety practices; as well as to provide incentives for investment in research and development to invent new and improved food safety systems.