Meat-Cross-Con: Meat safety - An innovative modelling approach to evaluate microbial pathogen transfer and cross contamination from farm to fork

  • Aabo, Søren (Project Manager)
  • Bahl, Martin Iain (Project Participant)
  • Nauta, Maarten (Project Participant)
  • Møller, Cleide Oliveira de Almeida (Project Participant)
  • Buschhardt, Tasja (Project Participant)
  • Sørensen, Søren Johannes (Project Participant)
  • Gombossy de Melo Franco, Bernadette Dora (Project Participant)
  • Sant’Ana, Anderson de Souza (Project Participant)
  • da Silva, Ana Paula Rosa (Project Participant)
  • Lopes, Janaina (Project Participant)
  • Hansen, Tina Beck (Project Participant)

Project Details


Spread of pathogens in the meat chain constitutes a major food safety concern as enteropathogens in animals brought to slaughter contaminate process equipment and carcass surfaces, and cross contaminate non-contaminated meat in the meat processing line. Also, temperatures can exceed cooling chain demands and cause growth of pathogens. To adjust processes and to perform adequate cleaning regimens in the most effective way, the industry needs tools that enable them to identify the critical handling procedures and process equipment. We therefore aim to develop novel bacterial cross contamination models for the slaughter process (pigs) and the handling of selected meat products (beef). We combine laboratory experiments and field studies to explore the magnitude and the nature of cross contamination. We hypothesize that is possible to quantify cross contamination of meat conferred by specific processes or equipment. This will be done by studying 1) transfer of Salmonella and Listeria monocytogenes between meat samples and between meat and equipment 2) the changes in the microbial population (microbiota) on carcasses and on meat products passing specific process steps. The latter approach is an extension of microbiota analysis used for source tracking. We also hypothesize that a microbiota analysis will be able to reflect whether bacterial growth has taken place. 16S-RNA gene pyrosequencing will be used for the study of systematic changes microbiota. The collaboration between Brazil and Denmark has the potential to significantly impact hygiene intervention, and support a harmonised quality assurance and risk management by industry and public authorities in the two countries and internationally.
Effective start/end date01/01/201331/12/2015

Collaborative partners


  • Danish Council for Strategic Research


Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.