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To Sample or Not to Sample? An Analysis of the Need for Salmonella Sampling of Smaller Poultry Processors

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Sarah O'Brien

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Abstract

Within the European Union (EU), microbiological criteria (MC) sampling for Salmonella in poultry was introduced in 2005. In particular, processors had to meet a target of fewer than seven positive samples out of 50. However, processors producing small amounts of poultry meat did not have to sample if national authorities determined this was an acceptable risk. The U.K. Food Standards Agency (FSA) thus has a sampling regime based on throughput that allows smaller processors not to sample. In 2011, the limit of 7/50 was reduced to 5/50. Given the current uncertainty regarding U.K. trade relations with the EU, the U.K. FSA decided to conduct a new risk assessment of the risks of Salmonella produced by smaller processors, to determine whether sampling was now necessary. Current evidence suggests that an MC sampling regime in smaller slaughterhouses is not warranted from a national public health perspective. Because of the insensitivities of the MC sampling scheme, the introduction of MC sampling into smaller slaughterhouses would only be necessary if the suspected carcass prevalence was 15% or more. While our analysis is prone to uncertainty, we estimated that the carcass prevalence in smaller processors is below this. Thus, we recommended that the current sampling framework, allowing smaller processors not to sample, was still applicable.


Publication metadata

Author(s): Hill A, Muñoz V, Downes J, Schuppers M, Buncic S, O'Brien S, Stärk KDC

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Risk Analysis

Year: 2020

Volume: 40

Issue: 10

Pages: 2093-2111

Print publication date: 01/10/2020

Online publication date: 28/07/2020

Acceptance date: 25/05/2020

ISSN (print): 0272-4332

ISSN (electronic): 1539-6924

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.

URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/risa.13545

DOI: 10.1111/risa.13545

PubMed id: 32722859


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