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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 #390614

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

Location: Poultry Microbiological Safety and Processing Research Unit

Title: Effect of exsanguination method on rate of blood loss and total blood loss in broilers

Author
item OSBORNE, RACHEL - University Of Georgia
item BAETHKE, EMILY - University Of Georgia
item Harris, Caitlin
item Buhr, Richard - Jeff
item KIEPPER, BRIAN - University Of Georgia

Submitted to: International Poultry Scientific Forum
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/7/2021
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Although blood represents a relatively low proportion of a broiler's total body composition, with over 9 billion broilers processed each year in the U.S., blood is not an insignificant by-product of poultry processing. Yet, there is relatively little research into the effect of exsanguination method on overall blood loss and blood loss rate. It has been theorized that decapitation may result in a less effective bleed out than a conventional neck cut. However, there are no definitive studies examining this issue with modern-day, feed withdrawn broilers such as could be found in a commercial processing environment. Without access to accurate bleed out data, processors may find themselves having to arbitrarily decide on an appropriate bleed out time and blood collection tunnel length. The aim of this study was to determine percent of blood loss and rate of blood loss for multiple exsanguination methods. To accomplish this, 88 male broilers at 51d of age underwent an 8-hour feed withdrawal before obtaining a live weight (mean = 3896 g). Birds were then electrically stunned and randomly assigned to be exsanguinated in one of 4 ways (n = 22): neck cut on one side (1S), neck cut on both sides (2S), decapitated at the base of the head (DH), or decapitated at the base of the neck (DN). Post exsanguination, bird weights were recorded in 15s intervals until 3 minutes had elapsed. Rate of blood loss and percent total blood loss were calculated, and data were analyzed by ANOVA in SAS JMP using Students t-test for means separation. Over the 3 minutes that blood loss was measured, DN (2.69%) showed a significantly lower cumulative %blood loss than 2S (2.99%), DH (3.01%), and 1S (3.01%) (P=0.0286). For the 0-15s post-neck cut period (P<0.0001), the DH (1.88%) and DN (1.64%) treatments were not significantly different from each other, but the DH treatment was significantly greater than the 2S (1.55%) and 1S (1.25%) treatments. After the first 15s period, the 1S treatment had a significantly higher blood loss rate than the other treatments for the 30s, 45s, 60s and 75s periods. No significant differences were seen between treatments after 75s. These findings provide insight into how best blood collection and bleed out time may be optimized when processing the modern broiler.