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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Research Project: Impact of Egg Production System on Salmonella Status of Commercial Laying Flocks in the United States

Location: Egg Safety and Quality

2013 Annual Report

1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
To determine the impact of egg production systems on the Salmonella status of commercial laying flocks in the U.S.

1b.Approach (from AD-416):
Egg production systems throughout the U.S. will be sampled to determine the incidence of Salmonella in the production environment. The U.S. will be divided into 5 regions. Five housing systems will be examined: conventional cage, enriched cage, cage-free (without outdoor access), cage-free (with porches), and free-range with paddock. Over the course of the study, each housing system will be examined three times per region. Approximately 20 samples per housing environment will be collected. Survey information will be submitted with each set of samples to assist with data analysis. Typical Salmonella isolation procedures utilized in our laboratory will be employed.

3.Progress Report:

The project specifically falls under Objective 1: Evaluate the role of various production and managements systems and storage and processing practices on egg safety (and quality).

This new funding agreement is a collaborative effort between ARS, North Carolina State University and the University of Georgia. Environmental samples will be collected from conventional cage, enriched cage, and cage-free egg production systems across the U.S. to assess the prevalence and specific species of Salmonella present. Currently, partnerships are being formed with state inspection services which have trained in the official methods for environmental sample collection under the provisions of the FDA Egg Rule. Samples will be collected between 45-50 wks of hen age.

The data generated from this project will assess prevalence of Salmonella species in the egg production environment in the U.S., as well as determine if housing system impacts prevalence. Additionally, geographical significance on Salmonella detection and species can be determined.

Last Modified: 4/18/2014
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