The process of destroying microorganisms, bacteria, viruses and insects in food products through ionizing radiation. To be clear, irradiation does not cause food to be radioactive. The effect of food irradiation is damage to DNA so that spoilage-causing microorganisms cannot survive or proliferate. Public interest groups and environmentalists have raised concerns about food irradiation, among them: the real effect of irradiation on the nutritional quality of food;how the practice discourages adherence to good manufacturing processes; chemical changes in food which can be harmful to the consumer; and the environmental impact of irradiation facilities.