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Summary of the Swedish Campylobacter Program in Broilers, 2001 through 2005

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A Campylobacter monitoring program in broiler chickens was carried out in Sweden from 2001 through 2005. The objective was to reduce the occurrence of Campylobacter in the food chain through preventive measures, starting with primary production. The program involved collecting samples from all broiler flocks at slaughter and occasional additional times. The annual incidence of Campylobacter-positive slaughter batches progressively decreased from 20% in 2002 to 13% in 2005. Most of the positive batches had a high within-flock prevalence of Campylobacter. However, about 18% of the positive batches had a low-within-flock prevalence; Campylobacter spp. were isolated from at most 50% of the cloacal samples. The incidence of batches contaminated at slaughter ranged between 6 and 9% during the study period. During all 5 years, a seasonal peak of incidence was observed in the summertime. In an additional study, quantitative analyses were performed on neck skin samples and carcass rinse samples. Those results were compared with the positive and negative findings of the cloacal, cecum, and neck skin samples at slaughter. When Campylobacter was found in the cecum, there was a higher level of Campylobacter in the quantitative analyses. Those batches where Campylobacter already had been found on the farm had a higher concentration of Campylobacter than those batches in which Campylobacter was found only at slaughter. During the study period, about one-third of producers seldom delivered Campylobacter-positive batches (<10% positive batches per year). Thus, it is possible to produce Campylobacter-free broilers in Sweden.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Bacteriology, National Veterinary Institute, SE-751 89 Uppsala, Sweden 2: National Food Administration, P.O. Box 622, SE-751 26 Uppsala, Sweden 3: Swedish Board of Agriculture, Vallgatan 5, SE-551 82 Jönköping, Sweden; Swedish Poultry Meat Association, Box 55633, SE-102 14 Stockholm, Sweden 4: Swedish Zoonosis Center, National Veterinary Institute, SE-751 89 Uppsala, Sweden; Swedish Institute for Infectious Disease Control, SE-171 82 Solna, Sweden 5: Swedish Poultry Meat Association, Box 55633, SE-102 14 Stockholm, Sweden 6: Swedish Zoonosis Center, National Veterinary Institute, SE-751 89 Uppsala, Sweden 7: Swedish Institute for Infectious Disease Control, SE-171 82 Solna, Sweden

Publication date: September 1, 2007

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