Controlling litter quality can help meet EU salmonella legislation
The beginning of 2009 marked the European Union’s ban on the sale of fresh eggs from flocks infected with either Salmonella enteritidis or Salmonella typhimurium.
Kiotechagil’s Chief Technical Officer Murray Hyden offered recommendations to improve feed and water quality to provide an effective control mechanism to optimize and support healthy commensal microflora.
Colour-enhanced scanning electron micrograph shows Salmonella typhimurium (red) invading cultured human cells.
Hyden referred to the Code of Practice which lists the following precautions:
- avoid storing ingredients known to be at a high risk of salmonella contamination such as cereals and oil seeds in flat stores or open bins.
- consider treating protein, cereal ingredients and whole grain feed with aldehyde/acid mixtures (although not on organic enterprises where the use of aldehydes is not permitted).
- after manufacture, transport feed carefully to prevent post processing contamination.
He also urged poultry producers to consider:
- incorporating acid products in layers rations to reduce the risk of salmonella positives from horizontal transmission or direct fecal contact with eggs.
- incorporating on-belt manure drying because it allows the litter to dry faster and attain much lower levels of water activity. A low water activity, below the threshold of survival for salmonella, will initially prevent multiplication and ultimately cause the death of the pathogens, based on a recent report in the journal Epidemiology and Infection.
A healthy, drier litter, he said, contains fewer enteropathogens and has a lower Aw.