Submitted to: Journal Of Poultry Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/25/1997
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Broiler carcasses were removed from commercial processing lines after defeathering, before chilling, and after chilling to determine whether any relationship exists between aerobic bacteria and the human enteropathogens salmonellae and Campylobacter. A whole carcass rinse procedure was used to sample 30 carcasses after defeathering, 90 carcasses before chilling, and 90 carcasses after chilling, for a total of 210 different carcasses. Aerobic bacteria and Campylobacter spp. were enumerated and the incidence of salmonellae was determined. Salmonellae and Campylobacter incidences were 20 percent and 94 percent, respectively, for all carcasses sampled. Before chilling, aerobic and Campylobacter counts (log10 cfus per carcass) were 7.12 and 5.33, respectively. Immersion chilling reduced aerobic counts by approximately 1.8 logs and Campylobacter by 1.5 logs, with no change in salmonellae-positive carcasses sThere was no difference in aerobic or Campylobacter counts between carcasses that were positive or negative for salmonellae at any of the sampling locations, nor was any correlation found between levels of aerobic organisms and Campylobacter. Carasses with aerobic counts above the mean or more than one standard deviation above the mean also failed to show any relationship. Discriminant analysis indicated error rates as high as 50% when numbers of aerobic bacteria were used to predict incidence of salmonellae or Campylobacter on individual carcasses. Aerobic bacteria are not suitable as index organisms for salmonellae or Campylobacter.