Cross contamination of turkey carcasses by Salmonella species during defeathering.
ABSTRACT Salmonella present on the feathers of live birds could be a source of contamination to carcass skin during defeathering. In this study, the possibility of transfer of Salmonella from the feathers of live turkeys to carcass tissue during the defeathering process at a commercial turkey processing plant was investigated. The contribution of scald water and the fingers of the picker machines to cross contamination were also examined. Over 4 visits, swab samples were collected from 174 randomly selected tagged birds before and after defeathering. Two swab samples from the fingers of the picker machines and a sample of scald water were also collected during each visit. Detection of Salmonella was carried out following standard cultural and identification methods. The DNA fingerprints obtained from pulsed field gel electrophoresis of Salmonella serotypes isolated before and after defeathering, from scald water, and from the fingers of the picker machines were compared to trace cross contamination routes. Salmonella prevalence was similar before and after defeathering during visits 2 and 3 and significantly increased after defeathering during visits 1 and 4. Over the 4 visits, all Salmonella subtypes obtained after defeathering were also isolated before defeathering. The results of this study suggest that Salmonella was transferred from the feathers to carcass skin during each visit. On each visit, the Salmonella subtypes isolated from the fingers of the picker machines were similar to subtypes isolated before and after defeathering, indicating that the fingers facilitate carcass cross contamination during defeathering. Salmonella isolated from scald water during visit 4 was related to isolates obtained before and after defeathering, suggesting that scald water is also a vehicle for cross contamination during defeathering. By using molecular subtyping, this study demonstrated the relationship between Salmonella present on the feathers of live turkeys and carcass skin after defeathering, suggesting that decontamination procedures applied to the external surfaces of live turkeys could reduce Salmonella cross contamination during defeathering.
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ABSTRACT: Salmonella enterica is a significant cause of gastroenteritis worldwide, with serovars Typhimurium and Heidelberg being particularly prevalent, which have broad host ranges infecting poultry, dairy animals, and humans. Traditional methods used for the detection of Salmonella from contaminated food products are time-consuming and labor-intensive. The aim of this study was to develop a sensitive and rapid PCR-based detection method with optimized specificity for high-throughput screening of food and clinical samples. We used bioinformatics to identify potential serovar-specific regions from the available S. enterica sequenced genomes. We designed primer pairs to targeted regions unique to Typhimurium and Heidelberg. A primer pair targeting a putative cytoplasmic protein STM4492 amplified a 759-bp product specific to Typhimurium, and a primer pair targeting a putative inner membrane protein STM2745 amplified a 199-bp product from both Typhimurium and Heidelberg. A primer pair for the oriC locus was used to identify all Salmonella. We screened 217 isolates including the Salmonella reference collections A and B, validating the specificity of each primer set. Next, a multiplex PCR (mPCR) assay and quantitative real-time PCR assay were optimized for identification and differentiation of Typhimurium and Heidelberg. An mPCR assay was developed and successfully detected S. enterica isolates from inoculated Cheddar cheese, raw turkey, and cooked turkey at concentrations as low as 1 CFU/g of food. The reaction conditions for this mPCR have significantly reduced the time needed to identify S. enterica Typhimurium and Heidelberg, making this a rapid selective tool.Journal of food protection 11/2009; 72(11):2350-7. · 1.83 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Food safety and the development of an understanding of issues surrounding pathogens associated with food is of considerable importance in modern-day food production. The design and use of risk models to estimate the likelihood of human illness has become an important part of our understanding of food safety issues. In order to quantify food safety risks, the first requirement is to estimate the occurrence of the pathogen associated with a particular production system. As such, an assessment of whether interventions significantly reduce these risks can be made. In light of recent events in food production including pathogens in ready to eat foods and outbreaks of Escherichia coli O157:H7 associated with produce, the development and implementation of risk models will continue to gain importance in the coming years. This paper focuses on some of the current research ongoing at North Dakota State University to develop a greater understanding of Salmonella as it pertains to turkey production and processing in the Midwest. This overview of studies of Salmonella in turkey production stems from a presentation of research made at the Integrated Risk Studies: Gate to Plate-Current Issues and Future Strategies Conference held in Fargo, ND, May 4-5, 2006.Foodborne Pathogens and Disease 02/2007; 4(4):491-504. · 2.28 Impact Factor