Salmonella Control in the Colombian Pig Industry


Start date: 1 May, 2019 End date: 31 January, 2023 Project type: Research projects in countries with targeted development cooperation (earlier Window 2) Project code: 18-M07-KU Countries: Colombia Thematic areas: Food security and safety, Lead institution: University of Copenhagen (UCPH), Denmark Partner institutions: Universidad CES, Colombia Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Colombia Instituto Colombiano Agropecuario (ICA), Colombia PorkColombia, Colombia Danish Agriculture and Food Council, Denmark Project website: go to website (the site might be inactive) Project coordinator: Anders Dalsgaard Total grant: 4,995,300 DKK Project files:

Project summary

SalPork: finding good ways to raise food safety standards in the Colombian pork industry

As an emerging economy, Colombia has seen growing production and consumption of pig meat. Today, the country produces about 400,000 tons of pork per year, mostly consumed domestically but the country wants to grow its exports as well.

Veterinary and food safety are however key concerns in Colombian pig production. Research suggests that contamination with pathogens such as Salmonella affects pork products on the domestic market, and most abattoirs cannot meet strict international food safety standards. In a Strategic Sector Collaboration with Denmark, Colombia plans to raise the veterinary and food safety standards in its pork industry.

Reducing hazard contamination requires better surveillance and better control practices. SalPork, a public-private Colombian-Danish pilot project, aims to assess Salmonella contamination risks across the Colombian pork production chain, from pig farms to food products. For example at pig farms, bacteria may enter the chain through drinking water, feed, other pigs, wild birds, or rodents. Risks might be reduced through measures such as water acidification, feed fermentation, or better rodent control.

Downstream, contamination may occur during pig transport, slaughter or meat processing. Here, too, a range of potential measures could reduce risks, including better carcass singeing/flaming, hot-water or organic-acid washing, or intense cooling. SalPork will quantify current Salmonella risks across the production chain, identify high-risk places and practices, and identify those interventions that will reduce the overall risk to internationally accepted low levels most cost-effectively.

Grounded in evidence, SalPork’s conclusions will help future Salmonella surveillance and control efforts in Colombia. It will ultimately lead to safer pork products for the country’s consumers and better export opportunities for its many pig farmers.

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