As for my prejudices:
My first choice is fresh food -- raw or cooked gently (though I have to
confess to occasional barbecuing!)
My second is frozen food.
My third is commercially canned staples (vegetables) or dried foods
(pasta, beans, etc.).
Irradiated food, if it were available here, would not be my first choice, the
existing choices fill my needs pretty well.
Maybe food irradiation fills a need that justifies whatever additional risks
there might be. My guess is that the greater concern is similar to use of
rBST or genetically-engineered crops -- that is, will the consumer be
afforded the choice, or will the resulting products be indistinguishable
from currently-accepted products (ie, not labelled as having been
produced or preserved in a different way)? This is a very real concern;
it puts the burden of public safety squarely in the hands of government
regulators and private food multiglomerates -- not the most reassuring
place to put your trust, I think most sanetters will agree!