April 2014 - March 2017

Assessment and mitigation of contamination risks: critical knowledge to reduce diseases and increase biosecurity compliance

Principal Investigator: Jean-Pierre Vaillancourt, University of Montreal
Co-investigator: Michele Guerin, University of Guelph; Patrick Boerlin, University of Guelph; Mansel Griffiths, University of Guelph; Manon Racicot, Canadian Food Inspection Agency
Status: Completed


The objective of this study is two-fold
  1. Determining the level of contamination after biosecurity breaches at barn entrances and evaluation of sanitation procedures to mitigate them
  2. Determine how pathogen loads are affected by current barn sanitation procedures recommended by the poultry industry


Biosecurity measures are designed to protect a population from transmissible infectious agents and to reduce the consequences of an infection. This provides a means of reducing disease and thus antibiotic usage in animal production. To be effective, biosecurity measures must be applied consistently by all; unfortunately the application of biosecurity measures is often sporadic and variable. The nature and frequency of errors suggests a lack of understanding of biosecurity principles for some, and unwillingness to comply for others. Although biosecurity measures have been the object of numerous presentations and documents, the scientific literature is limited in applied studies using pathogens to demonstrate their relative impact. To significantly improve biosecurity, and consequently improve on-farm infections, it is critical to evaluate the value of the recommended biosecurity measures. There is a need to generate the necessary data to support training programs and any other measures designed to improve biosecurity compliance.


$199,972 (AAFC/CPRC $124,972, OMAF $45,000, Poultry Industry Council $25,000, University of Montreal $5,000)


*This research was part of the Poultry Science Cluster 2 which was supported by AAFC as part of Growing Forward 2, a federal-provincial-territorial initiative.

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