October 19, 2018

Study Finds Plant Oils Cut Salmonella in Poultry

A study conducted at the University of Georgia and published in the May 2013 issue of Food Control has found that adding a blend of essential oils to chicken’s water can cut Salmonella contamination.  Salmonella bacteria cause about 1 million cases of foodborne illness in this country every year. And the cost of Salmonella enterica infections is $3.3 billion every year.

chickensPoultry is a common source of the pathogenic bacteria. There were several Salmonella outbreaks linked to live poultry in the United States last year. And the combination of Salmonella and poultry is the fourth most likely combination that causes foodborne illness in this country.

In the study, scientists added essential oils from thyme, oregano, and eucalpytol to the poultry’s water source. Those oils have antibacterial qualities. The control groups had nothing added to their water source, lactic acid, or a combination of organic acids.

Not only did the chickens have significantly less Salmonella contamination, but they had more weight gain and a lower mortality rate. Researchers have found the best concentration level of the oils, and now want to see how the product works on the commercial level.

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