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  1. Biological, Chemical, and Physical Contaminants in Animal Food

Biological Hazards

Biological contaminants cover a broad range of contaminants including both bacterial and viral pathogens. Under the Animal Feed Contaminants program, biological contaminants that are routinely monitored and detected include Salmonella spp., L. monocytogenes, and pathogenic E. coli. These bacterial pathogens may present a hazard to animal health by consumption of the animal food and to human health by consumption of animal-derived human food or by exposure to a contaminated animal food that can cause human disease.

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Salmonella
Listeria monocytogenes (L. monocytogenes)
Pathogenic E. coli


Salmonella

Salmonella is a bacterium responsible for salmonellosis in humans and animals. Salmonella can infect animals through consumption and/or humans by handling of contaminated animal food and/or infected animals and their feces.

Animal food can become contaminated with Salmonella through the inclusion of Salmonella-contaminated raw materials (ingredient-related), Salmonella-contaminated manufacturing environment (facility-related) and inadequately process to kill the Salmonella (process-related). Meat and poultry ingredients, including rendered ingredients, have been sources of Salmonella contamination.

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Listeria monocytogenes (L. monocytogenes)

L. monocytogenes is a bacterium responsible for listeriosis in humans and animals. L. monocytogenes is unique in that it is a psychrophile, meaning it is capable of growing at refrigeration temperatures. L. monocytogenes can tolerate both acidic and salty conditions, both high and low temperatures, and fairly low moisture content. It can persist in processing facilities for years. L. monocytogenes can be introduced through a variety of foods including raw meat, vegetables, refrigerated foods (including fruits and vegetables), smoked and raw seafood, and unpasteurized dairy products.

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Pathogenic E. coli

Pathogenic E. coli is a bacterium associated with foodborne illness in humans and animals.

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Additional Information

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