|Brewer, Robert - USDA-FSIS|
|Caldwell, David - TEXAS A&M UNIV|
Submitted to: Southern Poultry Science Society Meeting Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: January 18, 1999
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Previous published research has identified the crop as a source of Salmonella and Campylobacter contamination for broiler carcasses and reported that broiler crops are 86 times more likely to rupture than the ceca. During the present study, we have evaluated leakage of crop and upper gastrointestinal contents from broilers using a fluorescent marker at a commercial processing plant. Broilers were orally gavaged with a fluorescent marker paste (corn meal-fluorescein dye-agar) and carcasses were collected from several points on a single processing line and examined for upper gastrointestinal leakage using a long-wavelength black light. This survey indicated that 60% of the broiler carcasses were positive for the marker at the re-hang station following head and shank removal. Eighty-one percent of the crops were removed prior to the cropper and visual on-line examination indicated considerable leakage of crop contents following crop removal by the pacman. Examination of the carcasses prior to the cropper detected the marker in the following regions: neck (100% positive), thoracic inlet (14% positive), thoracic cavity (38% positive), and abdominal cavity (38% positive). Immediately prior to chill immersion, 100% of the carcasses contained some degree of visually-identifiable marker contamination with data further differentiated into the following regions: neck (55% positive), thoracic inlet (30% positive), thoracic cavity (35% positive), and abdominal cavity (30% positive). These results suggest that the crop may serve as a source of carcass contamination within some processing plants and that the fluorescent marker may serve as a useful tool in the identification of critical control points.