2018 - 2023

Bacteriophage intervention during poultry carcass chilling and packaging to control Campylobacter and Salmonella contamination

Principal Investigator: Hany Anany, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Status: In progress


The main objective of this project is to assess the efficacy of Campylobacter and Salmonella phage cocktails in reducing count of their hosts on poultry carcasses when applied during the chilling step and embedded in the packaging absorbent pads.


Campylobacter and Salmonella are inhabitants of the intestine of many food producing animals, including avian species, and they commonly contaminate raw meat products during slaughtering and processing. Consequently, focusing on minimizing the cross contamination during the chilling step can significantly reduce the bacterial count and, more importantly, pathogen prevalence in the processed poultry carcasses. Within this context, chlorine is used by the poultry processing industry in chilling tanks as an antimicrobial chemical to reduce carcass contamination and to improve shelf life of poultry products. However, changing the pH of the chilling system above 6.5 reduces chlorine efficacy by more than 60%. Hence, the use of other antimicrobial interventions in combination with or as a replacement for chlorine should be investigated to minimize the risk of cross contamination in the chilling system.


$387,100 (CPRC/AAFC $342,100*, Maple Leaf Foods $30,000 (In-kind), Exceldore Foods $15,000 (in-Kind))

*This research is part of the 2018-2023 Poultry Science Cluster which is supported by AAFC as part of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, a federal-provincial-territorial initiative.

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