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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item Cray, Paula
item Robens, Jane
item Wineland, N
item Anadaraman, Neena

Submitted to: Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the American Veterinary Medical Associ
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/15/2005
Publication Date: 7/15/2005
Citation: Cray, P.J., Robens, J.F., Wineland, N.E., Anadaraman, N. 2005. Food safety on the farm. Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the American Veterinary Medical Associ. M100A:43.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: BACKGROUND: Despite significant producer interventions, on-going research efforts, and continued surveillance, food borne microbial pathogen outbreaks continue to occur. Furthermore, the emergence of multiple antimicrobial resistant (AR) food borne bacteria has amplified public concerns. A multi-agency Public Health Action Plan has been developed to address AR concerns, and the Department of Agriculture (USDA) has been a full participant in this Action Plan to more comprehensively address AR food safety and animal health concerns. USDA is now developing an independent program to address animal health, food safety, antimicrobial epidemiology, and surveillance issues. CAHFSE: The Collaboration in Animal Health and Food Safety Epidemiology (CAHFSE) is a comprehensive USDA program designed to address animal health and food safety issues, including antimicrobial resistance, utilizing continual tracking of the selected data points. This program includes on-farm sample collection and data for risk factor analysis (Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS)), culture and identification of bacterial species followed by research efforts including molecular and phenotypic characterization of isolates, pathogenesis studies and development of intervention strategies (Agricultural Research Service (ARS)), and in-plant efforts including sample collection and data for hazard assessment (Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS)). CAHFSE will enable USDA to reliably track both emerging animal diseases and zoonoses within the food animal population which may affect the food supply and impact public health. Program outline: CAHFSE commenced in July 2003. In 2004, fecal and blood samples were collected quarterly from pigs on sentinel farms in four states, Minnesota, Iowa, Texas, and North Carolina, which are representative of swine production within the industry. Additional states are being added in 2005. Herd health/management data are also being gathered. Currently, samples are being cultured for Salmonella, Campylobacter, E. coli and Enterococci, (zoonotic and commensal bacteria). However, once the sample is collected, culture of any bacterium or virus of concern is possible. Sera are being analyzed for antibody to Lawsonia intracellularis, the bacterium responsible for ileitis in growing swine. As with the fecal samples, banked serum samples could be tested to determine exposure to other pathogens or toxins. Samples and health/management data are being collected from each farm four times per year. • Quarterly visits/sampling will permit continual tracking of changes in herd health and allow flexibility to address additional issues and emergence of new diseases. • Management data will allow the identification of risk factors and provide data for on going risk assessment. • Research will enable timely development of interventions. All three agencies, APHIS, ARS, and FSIS, participate in study design, development of culture methodology and analysis of the data. Industry input has been solicited for study priorities, design and implementation. Input has also been obtained from other interested parties including academia, consumer groups and other government agencies. Expansion beyond the current number of farms for swine and/or the addition of other commodities will be based on industry interest and funding. Expected Outcomes and Benefits: CAHFSE will enable USDA to identify and implement mitigation strategies for animal health and food safety issues in a timely manner, thereby averting adverse economic, animal well being, and public health consequences. Further, it will provide comprehensive science-based answers regarding animal health and public health, it will serve as a model for future surveillance efforts on a national level, and it will complement information obtained from both the National Antimic

Last Modified: 10/18/2017
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