Occurrences of thermophilic Campylobacter in pigs slaughtered at Morogoro slaughter slabs, Tanzania

Trop Anim Health Prod. 2011 Jan;43(1):83-7. doi: 10.1007/s11250-010-9657-4. Epub 2010 Aug 21.


Occurrences of thermophlic Campylobacter in pigs and pig carcasses was investigated in a cross-sectional study that was carried out in three selected slaughter slabs in Morogoro municipality, Tanzania. Before sampling, the slab hygiene, slaughter, carcass dressing, and meat handling was assessed. Fecal samples were collected from 66 slaughter pigs at the kill floor. After slaughter, a 100-cm(2) area on medial surface of the thigh muscles of dressed carcasses was sampled using sterile cotton swabs. Thereafter, the jejunal, cecal, and colon contents were also sampled. The samples were subjected to standard bacteriological examination using Skirrows protocol. In all slaughter slabs visited, it was found that pig slaughter, dressing, and meat handling was done on the ground under unhygienic condition. All the slaughter slab environment were dirty and had neither tap water or drainage systems. Thermophilic Campylobacter prevalence in slaughtered pig was 66.7% while contamination rate of dressed carcasses was 10.6%. Of the Campylobacter-positive carcasses, five (12.2%) were from the animals which were also positive to Campylobacter. The isolation rate of Campylobacter in the cecum was higher (34.8%) compared to the small intestines (28.8%) and colon (16.7%) although the difference was not statistically significant (P > 0.05). Campylobacter jejuni was the most prevalent species as it constituted 74% of all isolates, while Campylobacter coli was isolated at 26%. This suggests possible risks of infection to people through consumption of contaminated pork or through contact with infected pigs. Cecum was found to be the major part of intestine highly colonized by Campylobacter.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Abattoirs
  • Animals
  • Campylobacter Infections / epidemiology
  • Campylobacter Infections / veterinary*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Feces / microbiology
  • Food Microbiology / statistics & numerical data*
  • Intestines / microbiology
  • Prevalence
  • Species Specificity
  • Swine
  • Swine Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Swine Diseases / microbiology*
  • Tanzania / epidemiology