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.

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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.