Over 7,000 birds on eight poultry farms to be culled due to salmonella outbreak

"The affected flocks were restricted and there was no threat to human health, he added," said IFA poultry chairman Nigel Sweetman

"On-farm incident has arisen following the food recall of Western Brand,” says the FSAI



1 February 2023

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More than 7,000 birds will have to be culled in order to to ensure potentially-infected chicken products do not enter the food chain, following a salmonella outbreak on eight poultry farms around the country.

Due to the risk to human health from the bacteria, The Irish Times reports restrictions have been applied in the vicinity of the farms, most of which are in Co. Cavan.

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) is cuurently working with the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) in a bid to curb the outbreak and to determine its cause.

The FSAI has confirmed that incidences of salmonella infection in broiler flocks were linked to a raw-chicken food recall it issued earlier this month, when some poultry products were removed from supermarket shelves.

The department reported it was working closely with the FSAI and the National Reference Laboratory for Salmonella to determine how the outbreak caused by salmonella typhimurium appeared in several different areas at the same time.

Testing was increased at processing units after the recall, and commercial poultry flocks nationwide, in an attempt to determine if outbreaks arose from the one source. Augmented testing including “whole genome sequencing” will be used to identify particular bacterial strains in circulation and establish if there is a link.

According to the FSAI: “To date, there are no human cases of illness linked to this investigation into the broiler flocks. This on-farm incident has arisen following the food recall of Western Brand undertaken last week.”

The FSAI has been notified by the department that affected flocks “will be culled and will not enter the food chain”.

It is understood the salmonella was detected in a processing facility, which led to a check back to supplier farms.

The outbreak was described as “devastating for the flock owners concerned” by IFA poultry chairman Nigel Sweetman. The affected flocks were restricted and there was no threat to human health, he added.

The authorities were working to deal with the situation as quickly and effectively as possible, he said.

Sweetman also asked poultry owners to review their biosecurity measures and to be extra vigilant.



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