Impact of transport crate reuse and of catching and processing on Campylobacter and Salmonella contamination of broiler chickens

J. Slader*, G. Domingue, Frieda Jorgensen, K. McAlpine, Robert Owen, F. J. Bolton, T. J. Humphrey

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    120 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    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).

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)713-719
    Number of pages7
    JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
    Volume68
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2002

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