Sunday, December 10, 2017
Campylobacter in poultry. Campylobacter is a leading cause of foodborne gastroenteritis in humans worldwide. Campylobacter is, in general, highly prevalent on poultry farms, but the prevalence varies by region, seasons and production types, with reported Campylobacter-positive flocks ranging from 2% to 100%. Once a broiler flock is infected with Campylobacter, the majority of birds become colonized within a few days, and the overall within-flock prevalence reaches very high levels by processing age, leading to increased carcass contamination. Campylobacter is ubiquitous in the poultry farm environment, and the sources of flock infection and risk factors influencing Campylobacter introduction are complex but horizontal transmission from environmental sources is the primary way flocks become colonized. Some of the most common factors associated with Campylobacter colonization in commercial broilers are poor farm biosecurity; the presence of other animals in the vicinity of poultry houses such as other poultry species, livestock, pets and wildlife; older processing age; large flock size; the use of ventilators; the presence of flies and rodents; and the use of old litter. Campylobacter can be introduced onto poultry farms by farm equipment, transport vehicles and farm workers. The prevalence of colonization tends to be much higher during hot weather. Campylobacter is common in the farm environment and can contaminate poultry houses via many different routes, preventing flock colonization with this organism is not an easy task, but these measures could help. Biosecurity and hygiene: Implementing strict biosecurity and good hygiene measures can help prevent Campylobacter from entering the broiler house from the outside environment. Treatment of drinking water: Acidification of drinking water with organic acids such as lactic acid, acetic acid or formic acid and water chlorination, especially when combined with other approaches, may decrease the risk of Campylobacter colonization in broilers. Litter treatment: Acidification of litter with aluminum sulfate and sodium bisulfate may decrease Campylobacter colonization frequency and cecal loads. Litter treatment with a combination of sodium bisulfate, ammonium sulfate and magnesium sulfate can significantly reduce the pH and moisture of litter as well as the numbers of contaminating Campylobacter, subsequently reducing colonization of chickens. Feed additives: A combination of 2% formic acid and 0.1% potassium sorbate in feed has been shown to be effective for preventing the colonization of broilers.