A quantitative approach towards a better understanding of the dynamics of Salmonella spp. in a pork slaughter-line.

Publication: Research - peer-reviewJournal article – Annual report year: 2012

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DOI

  • Author: H. A. M. van Hoek, Angela

    National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), The Netherlands

  • Author: Jonge, Rob de

    National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), The Netherlands

  • Author: M. van Overbeek, Wendy

    National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), The Netherlands

  • Author: Bouw, El

    National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), The Netherlands

  • Author: Pielaat, Annemarie

    National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), The Netherlands

  • Author: Smid, Joost H.

    National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), The Netherlands

  • Author: Malorny, Burkhard

    Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BFR), Germany

  • Author: Junker, Ernst

    Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BFR), Germany

  • Author: Löfström, Charlotta

    Division of Microbiology and Risk Assessment, National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark, Mørkhøj Bygade 19, 2860, Søborg, Denmark

  • Author: Pedersen, Karl

    Division of Microbiology and Risk Assessment, National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark, Mørkhøj Bygade 19, 2860, Søborg, Denmark

  • Author: Aarts, Henk J. M.

    National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), The Netherlands

  • Author: Heres, Lourens

    VION Fresh Meat West, The Netherlands

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Pork contributes significantly to the public health disease burden caused by Salmonella infections. During the slaughter process pig carcasses can become contaminated with Salmonella. Contamination at the slaughterline is initiated by pigs carrying Salmonella on their skin or in their faeces. Another contamination route could be resident flora present on the slaughter equipment. To unravel the contribution of these two potential sources of Salmonella a quantitative study was conducted. Process equipment (belly openers and carcass splitters), faeces and carcasses (skin and cutting surfaces) along the slaughter-line were sampled at 11 sampling days spanning a period of 4 months. Most samples taken directly after killing were positive for Salmonella. On 96.6% of the skin samples Salmonella was identified, whereas a lower number of animals tested positive in their rectum (62.5%). The prevalence of Salmonella clearly declined on the carcasses at the re-work station, either on the cut section or on the skin of the carcass or both (35.9%). Throughout the sampling period of the slaughter-line the total number of Salmonella per animal was almost 2log lower at the re-work station in comparison to directly after slaughter. Seven different serovars were identified during the study with S. Derby (41%) and S. Typhimurium (29%) as the most prominent types. A recurring S. Rissen contamination of one of the carcass splitters indicated the presence of an endemic ‘house flora’ in the slaughterhouse studied. On many instances several serotypes per individual sample were found. The enumeration of Salmonella and the genotyping data gave unique insight in the dynamics of transmission of this pathogen in a slaughter-line. The data of the presented study support the hypothesis that resident flora on slaughter equipment was a relevant source for contamination of pork.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Food Microbiology
Publication date2012
Volume153
Journal number1-2
Pages45-52
ISSN0168-1605
DOIs
StatePublished
CitationsWeb of Science® Times Cited: 13

Keywords

  • Quantitative, Slaughterhouse, Pigs, Resident flora, Salmonella, PCR
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