The influence of transport, catching, and processing on contamination of broiler chickens with Salmonella and Campylobacter was investigated. Transport crates were reused with high frequency and were often still contaminated with Salmonella and Campylobacter when they arrived at the farm despite the fact that they were washed at the factory, and thus they were a potential route of infection. These organisms contaminated the feathers of previously Campylobacter- and Salmonella -negative birds going to the processing plant and were isolated from processed carcasses, albeit at a low frequency. The Campylobacter types which were the predominant organisms on the live birds when they arrived at the processing plant were not necessarily the types that were most frequently isolated from processed carcasses. This finding may reflect cross-contamination that occurred during processing or differences in the tolerance of the strains to the hostile environments that the bacteria experienced. The process of catching and putting the birds in crates significantly increased the chance of contamination with Campylobacter (P < 0.001).