Risk Factors for Salmonella Prevalence on Egg Farms in Japan

Salmonella was identified in about 20 per cent of the farms tested, according to new research from Japan. The incidence was higher in closed houses than in those with open sides and additional risk factors were forced moulting and in-line egg processing.
calendar icon 24 September 2011
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Human salmonellosis cases, particularly those caused by Salmonella Enteritidis, have been closely linked to egg consumption. Y Sasaki of the Food Safety and Consumer Affairs Bureau at Japan's Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and co-authors at the Research Institute for Animal Science in Biochemistry and Toxicology and at the National Veterinary Assay Laboratory explain that their epidemiological survey was conducted to determine the baseline Salmonella prevalence and identify the risk factors for Salmonella prevalence in laying hen farms in Japan. Their paper is published online in the journal, Epidemiology and Infection.

Caecal excrement samples and dust samples were obtained from 400 flocks in 338 egg farms. Salmonella was identified in 20.7 per cent of the farms and 19.5 per cent of the flocks.

The prevalence of Salmonella was significantly higher in flocks reared in windowless houses than in those reared in open houses. In addition, the risk of Salmonella presence was significantly higher when the windowless house farms implemented induced moulting or in-line egg processing.

Efforts to reduce human salmonellosis in Japan should continue to focus on the establishment of control measures in laying hen farms, according to Sasaki and co-authors, especially those with windowless houses implementing induced moulting and equipped with in-line egg processing.


Sasaki Y., M. Murakami, N. Maruyama, Y. Tsujiyama, M. Kusukawa, T. Asai and Y. Yamada. 2011. Risk factors for Salmonella prevalence in laying-hen farms in Japan. Epidemiology and Infection. [published online]. doi: 10.1017/S0950268811001506

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September 2011
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