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Salmonella Risk in Imported Fresh Beef, Beef Preparations, and Beef Products

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Additional guarantees (AGs) for Salmonella in imported defined animal-derived foods were agreed on for Finland when it was admitted to the European Community. The aim of this project was to evaluate the impact of these AGs on the prevalence of Salmonella in the Finnish beef supply and the adequacy of their scope. According to the quantitative Bayesian model, the efficacy of AGs was mainly dependent on the proportions of different beef categories imported and the true prevalence in the countries of origin. According to the model, AGs were able to reach their target in the referred year 1999 and kept the true Salmonella prevalence of beef imports below 1% with quantified uncertainty. The extension of AGs to all imported fresh beef would have reduced the Salmonella prevalence of beef imports from three- to fourfold, whereas expanding the implementation of AGs to all imports of fresh beef, beef preparations, and beef products would have resulted in a sixfold decrease. If current AGs targeting fresh beef intended to be sold as fresh or to be processed by the Finnish industry with processes not achieving 70 C were not implemented, the 95% credible interval of Salmonella prevalence in the Finnish beef supply would be 0.2 to 1.3% (mean, 0.6%) instead of 0.1 to 1.2% (mean, 0.5%). However, if the prevalence in the exporting countries were to rise or the main import countries and/or magnitudes were to change, AGs would be of greater importance.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Risk Assessment, National Veterinary and Food Research Institute EELA, P.O. Box 45, 00581 Helsinki, Finland 2: Department of Risk Assessment, National Veterinary and Food Research Institute EELA, P.O. Box 45, 00581 Helsinki, Finland; Department of Food and Environmental Hygiene, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Helsinki University, P.O. Box 66, 00014 Helsinki, Finland

Publication date: August 1, 2006

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