A smarter approach to control Salmonella in broilers
6 October 2016
Salmonella prevalence can be a problem at any phase of the production chain. For poultry producers this is a great challenge, as the bacteria may enter the bird via several routes. Low quality of the water and feed systems, insufficient biosecurity measures and the arrival of new animals, are important factors to take into account. Finding solutions to control Salmonella is key as it has a direct impact on both animal health and welfare, and on food safety.
Salmonella: a complex and ongoing challenge for poultry producers
A large part of broiler flocks has Salmonella prevalence above 1%. Although these animals are clinically healthy, they are frequently carriers with the bacteria present in the caeca. In broiler production this represents a problem, as bacteria are consistently excreted via the faeces into the environment for extended periods of time. This increases the environmental prevalence, leading to a spread of the organism within the flock and potential problems for the end product. Besides the negative impact in the flock growth and productivity it also has consequences for the quality and value of the broiler meat for human consumption.
As Salmonella control is such a multi-factorial issue, innovative solutions to control it are permanently tested. The current trial tested the effect of a feed additive on the Salmonella counts in the liver, spleen and caeca in broilers.
About the trial
Trouw Nutrition set up a six-week trial with 360 Salmonella challenged broilers. Three treatments were tested, comparing a control diet with antibiotic growth promoters (AGP) and a feed additive. At the end of the study, the Salmonella prevalence in the liver, spleen and caeca of selected birds from each treatment was determined.
The use of the feed additive significantly decreased Salmonella counts in the liver, spleen and caeca in the early phase of the Salmonella challenge compared to both the control and the AGP group. In the AGP group, no influence was observer in the Salmonella counts of liver and spleen when compared with the control group.
These results obtained with the feed additive, represent a promising solution for this complex challenge. Including such feed additive interventions in a total approach of feed, farm and health management can prove to be very successful Salmonella reduction for poultry production. In this case, lowering the Salmonella counts in organs reduces risk of transmission from bird to bird in a flock and so contributes to the reduction of Salmonella in the total poultry feed to food chain.
The products used in the trial
In a Salmonella reduction programme it is vital to address all main routes contributing to the spreading of Salmonella. Fysal Fit-4 is a multi-disciplinary product containing different barriers to reduce eg. Salmonella enteritidis bacteria in poultry. There are four modes of action: it lowers the viability of Salmonella in feed and crop, reduces the growth of Salmonella in the gut, reduces the risk of adhesion to the mucosal barrier and down-regulates the virulence of the bacteria to reduce the risk of invasion.