Effect of acidified feed on suscebtibility of broiler chickens to intestinal infection by Campylobacter and Salmonella

L. Heres, B. Engel, H.A.P. Urlings, J.A. Wagenaar, F. van Knapen

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76 Citations (Scopus)


Consumption of poultry meat is associated with human Campylobacter and Salmonella infections. One way to control the presence of these bacteria in broiler flocks is to make chickens less susceptible for colonisation. Acidification of feed may be a tool to reduce the Campylobacter and Salmonella carriage in broiler chickens. In the present experiments an acidified feed with high levels of organic acid, 5.7% lactic acid and 0.7% acetic acid, was applied. In an in vitro experiment the reduction or growth of Campylobacter and Salmonella was measured after addition of 107 cfu of these bacteria into a conventional broiler feed, acidified feed and fermented feed, whereas the numbers of Salmonella increased in non-acidified feed. The number of Campylobacter decreased 2¿3 10log cfu. In the acidified and fermented feed a complete reduction of Campylobacter was observed within 20 min, and a total Salmonella reduction started after 1 h, and was complete after 2 h. Subsequently, an in vivo experiment with 100 individually housed broiler chickens showed that chickens fed acidified feed were less susceptible to an infection with Campylobacter than were chickens fed conventional feed. The size of reduction was however limited. The susceptibility for Salmonella colonisation was not affected by acidified feed. It is concluded that the role for acidified feed in the control of Campylobacter and Salmonella is limited
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)259-267
JournalVeterinary Microbiology
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 2004


  • fermented liquid feed
  • formic-acid
  • airborne transmission
  • propionic-acid
  • chicks
  • enteritidis
  • colonization
  • typhimurium
  • performance
  • netherlands

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