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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Athens, Georgia » U.S. National Poultry Research Center » Poultry Microbiological Safety and Processing Research Unit » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #362849

Research Project: Production and Processing Intervention Strategies for Poultry Associated Foodborne Pathogens

Location: Poultry Microbiological Safety and Processing Research Unit

Title: Effects of using dry hydrogen peroxide in a commercial hatchery on hatchery performance

item JORDAN, BRIAN - University Of Georgia
item OXFORD, LAURA - University Of Georgia
item MCEREATH, JULIA - University Of Georgia
item Cox Jr, Nelson
item BARRIOS, MIGUEL - Synexis
item WILSON, JEANNA - University Of Georgia

Submitted to: Poultry Science Association Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/23/2019
Publication Date: 7/15/2019
Citation: Jordan, B., Oxford, L., Mcereath, J., Cox Jr, N.A., Barrios, M., Wilson, J. 2019. Effects of using dry hydrogen peroxide in a commercial hatchery on hatchery performance [abstract]. Poultry Science Association Meeting Abstract. 98(1):105.

Interpretive Summary: n/a

Technical Abstract: Bacteria in a commercial broiler hatchery can be detrimental to chick health and hatchery performance. Even though sanitation and disinfection occur routinely, a method of continual sanitation used in addition could be a valuable tool for commercial hatcheries to maintain cleanliness over time. A commercially available product, gaseous dry hydrogen peroxide (DHP) from Synexis Biodefense ( has been proposed for this purpose. Preliminary studies have shown that DHP is effective at reducing microbial load on hatching eggs and does not negatively impact hatchability or chick health. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of DHP on bacteria levels and hatchery performance in a commercial hatchery setting. For this trial, a hatchery with two identical sides was used. Half of the hatchery was treated with DHP, while the other half remained non-treated. Treated areas included an egg cooler, setter hall, hatcher hall, chick processing areas, and vaccine laboratories. The non-treated locations included an egg cooler, setter hall, and hatcher hall. Bacterial loads were measured by total ATP bioluminescence swab samples and static air plates using tryptic soy agar (TSA). Air samples and ATP swabs were collected for two weeks prior to treatment to establish baseline microbial load, then samples were taken bi-monthly, then weekly, then bi-weekly from similar locations on each side of the hatchery for 27 weeks for comparison. Hatchery performance data, chick quality evaluations, and residue breakout data were also collected. Data were analyzed using Prism statistical software with student's T-tests or two-way ANOVA and Sidak's multiple comparisons test. Microbial load testing was affected by a "super clean" performed in the hatchery in week 5 of the study, but reductions in microbial load as compared to baseline was seen. Chick quality data showed an increase in the percent of chicks with bacteria in the yolk-sac, but a significant decrease (p<.05) in the percent of chicks with Aspergillus in the lungs. Early dead, bacterially contaminated, and Aspergillus contaminated embryos were numerically reduced on the treated side when compared to the non-treated side in residue breakouts. The percent hatch and hatch of fertile were numerically increased (90.2% non-treated vs. 90.9% treated HOF; p=.08) on the treated side of the hatchery as well. Three-day mortality of chicks hatched from the treated side was also numerically reduced compared to chicks hatched from the non-treated side. Taken together, this study suggests that the DHP product was beneficial as a method of continual sanitation to reduce microbial load, and the microbial reduction improved hatchery performance and production in a commercial setting.