In the past thirty years human campylobacteriosis has emerged to be the most common cause
of acute gastroenteritis in the industrialised countries. Efforts have been made to decrease the
incidence of Campylobacter infections. A very important source of infection is poultry meat.
The results from the Dutch CARMA project strongly indicate that meat from broiler flocks
shedding Campylobacter in higher concentrations then 7 log10 cfu/g faeces involve greater
risk for consumers to suffer from Campylobacteriosis. If those herds could be identified and
separated from fresh meat production most products yielding high probabilities of illness
could be removed from the food chain (NAUTA and HAVELAAR, 2008).
To identify high shedder broiler flocks an easy to use rapid test has been developed
The rapid test was verified within the context of the Commissions Decision 2007/516/EC
called Base-line-study Campylobacter broiler.
Results stood within the detection limit of ≥ 6.7 log10 cfu/g faeces for C. jejuni and
≥ 7.1 log10 cfu/g for C. coli under laboratory conditions (WADL, 2008).
Out of 187 examined samples 102 have been tested positive and 69 negative by the rapid test. All results were confirmed by the reference method ISO 10272. The test showed only 5 false
positive or negative results. Applied on the results of the reference method, the rapid test
showed a sensitivity of 89.5 and a specificity of 94.5 %. For the reference method the
prevalence was 61 % in the sample period. Additionally all samples were examined by
real-time PCR. With this method the results of the rapid test and the reference method could
be confirmed and a prevalence of 71.7 % was calculated for the sample period.
Campylobacter, rapid test, broiler, chicken, real time PCR