Salmonella spp. prevails as the main cause of raw meat foodborne illnesses. Implementation of food safety management systems such as Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points in swine abattoirs can help to mitigate pathogen exposure. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the impact of the HACCP system in slaughterhouses in Colombia on reducing Salmonella spp. exposure due to the consumption of fresh pork meat. Two slaughtering plants with a different degree of HACCP implementation were selected and a quantitative microbiological mapping was built by collecting 820 samples of Salmonella spp. enumeration at different processing stages. The overall Salmonella spp. mean concentration was 1.15 ± 0.55 log MPN/g, with no significant differences among plants (P > 0.05). Deficiencies during carcass disinfection and temperature during distribution of meat cuts from the slaughterhouse lacking of HACCP resulted in a significant increase of Salmonella spp. prevalence (20–40%) (P < 0.05). Processing stages with the highest pathogen prevalence were transport (28–32%) and hanging (16–36%). The exposure assessment model estimated a higher degree of pathogen contamination at the time of consumption in meat cuts from the slaughterhouse without HACCP (3.36 versus 3.68 log MPN/g) and 10-fold increase in the probability a consumer would acquire a contaminated portion (0.011 versus 0.105). Implementation of the HACCP system in swine slaughterhouses represents tangible Salmonella spp. reduction control and public health protection measures.
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© The Author(s) 2019.
- Microbial mapping
- exposure assessment
- pork meat