September 27, 2021


UK sees increase in salmonella in livestock last year



Overall findings of salmonella in livestock in the United Kingdom in 2020 went up, according to a report.


Data collected by the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) last year covers salmonella reports from livestock in England, Wales and Scotland. Samples were taken from premises including farms, hatcheries, veterinary practices, zoos and slaughterhouses.


The rise came despite a reduction in non-statutory surveillance and clinical diagnosis submissions in many species due to the COVID-19 pandemic and associated lockdown measures.


In 2020, the number of salmonella isolations overall from cattle, sheep, pigs and poultry increased by 7.6% compared with 2019 to 3,279 from 3,046 isolations but decreased by 7.3% on 2018 numbers.


Compared to 2019, fewer isolations from cattle, sheep, turkeys and ducks were recorded, but those for pigs and chickens rose. Most salmonella reports from cattle, sheep and pigs are due to clinically diseased animals whereas those from chickens and turkeys are mostly from surveillance.


There were 52 isolations of Salmonella Newport in chickens, which is more than 10 times the number in 2019. Many of these were from an ongoing outbreak investigation in the layer sector. A single isolate of Salmonella Mikawasima — not related to a human outbreak strain — was isolated from chickens in the UK for the first time. The presence of one strain of salmonella indicates others may be present.


There were two and a half times more isolations of Salmonella Agona with 103 in 2020 versus 40 in 2019, twice as many of Salmonella Bovismorbificans from 20 to 43 and almost three times as many Salmonella Newport isolations to 66. Salmonella Kedougou also went up. Isolations of Salmonella Typhimurium increased from 124 in 2019 to 159.


There were fewer isolations of Salmonella Derby from 183 to 39, Salmonella Indiana fell from 101 to 65 and Salmonella Mbandaka dropped from 451 to 326. Reports of Salmonella Enteritidis were at 34 in 2020 compared with 50 in 2019.


A total of 3,527 isolations of salmonella from livestock in 2020 were noted, which is up almost 3% from 2019. They mostly came from chickens, followed by cattle, ducks, turkeys, pigs, sheep and horses.


Surveillance data for 2020 shows that only 23.1% of the isolations of salmonella reported to APHA resulted from samples taken because of clinical disease in livestock. This is lower than during both 2019 and 2018. It contrasts with data for salmonella in humans where reports usually originate from cases of clinical disease.


There were 756 isolations of Salmonella from animal feeding stuffs in 2020, including from compound feed and feed ingredients or products associated with testing under animal by-products regulations. This is an increase of 6% compared with 2019 and up from 627 isolations in 2018.


In total, 107 isolations of regulated salmonella serovars were detected in animal feed and related products. This is higher than 88 in 2019 and 63 in 2018.


Of the more than 4,200 salmonella isolates examined during 2020, 68.3% were susceptible to all 16 antimicrobial compounds tested. The percentage of isolates resistant to ciprofloxacin in 2020 was 0.5%.


- Food Safety News