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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Effect of Immersion Chilling Operations and Refrigerated Storage on Campylobacter Populations Associated with Broiler Carcasses

Authors
item Hinton, Jr, Arthur
item Cason Jr, John
item Hume, Michael
item Ingram, Kimberly

Submitted to: Annual Meeting of the Institute of Food Technologists
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: January 27, 2004
Publication Date: August 1, 2004
Citation: Hinton Jr, A., Cason Jr, J.A., Hume, M.E., Ingram, K.D. 2004. Effect of immersion chilling operations and refrigerated storage on campylobacter populations associated with broiler carcasses. [abstract] Annual Meeting of the Institute of Food Technologists. Paper No.67E-2.

Interpretive Summary: Consumption of chicken meat contaminated with campylobacter bacteria is one of the main causes of human foodborne diseases. During poultry processing, chicken carcasses may be immersed in cold water to quickly cool the carcasses. In these experiments, the effect of immersion chilling and refrigerated storage on Campylobacter on the carcasses was studied. The number and types of campylobacter on freshly eviscerated carcasses, freshly chilled carcasses, and chilled carcasses stored for 7 or 14 days in a refrigerator were determined. The relationship between these bacteria was also established. Results indicated that chilling carcasses in cold water did not decrease the number of Campylobacter on the carcasses, but the number of bacteria on the carcasses did decrease during refrigeration. The same types of Campylobacter were found on eviscerated, chilled, and refrigerated carcasses. Findings indicate that although some Campylobacter can survive chilling operations, their numbers on processed chicken carcasses usually decrease during refrigeration. The use of better procedures during chilling operations may reduce the number of people who get sick from eating chicken meat contaminated with Campylobacter.

Technical Abstract: The effect of immersion chilling and refrigerated storage on Campylobacter populations on processed broiler carcasses was examined. The whole carcass rinse procedure was used to recover Campylobacter from freshly eviscerated carcasses, freshly chilled carcasses, and chilled carcasses stored at 4C for 7 or 14 days. Presumptive Campylobacter in carcass rinsates were enumerated on Campylobacter Agar (Blaser) by inoculating the media with serial dilutions of the rinsates and incubating the plates at 42C for 2 days. The MIDI Sherlock Microbial Identification System (MIS) was used to confirm the identity of the bacterial isolates based on the fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) profiles of the bacteria. Additionally, the dendrogram program of the MIS was used to determine the degree of relatedness between isolates based on the similarity of the bacterial FAME profiles. Results indicated that immersion chilling produced no significant change in the number of Campylobacter recovered from the carcasses. There was a significant decrease in the Campylobacter population during refrigerated storage, however. Some of the same Campylobacter strains were recovered from eviscerated, chilled, and refrigerated carcasses. Findings indicate that although some Campylobacter on broilers can survive chilling operations, populations usually decrease during refrigerated storage. The use of more effective intervention strategies during chilling operations may reduce the number of cases of human campylobacteriosis associated with the consumption of contaminated poultry products.

Last Modified: 4/20/2014
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