Food Safety

The Prevalence of L. monocytogenes in Cull Sows

  • I. V. Wesley (United States Department of Agriculture)
  • S. T. Larsen (Iowa State University)
  • H. S. Hurd (United States Department of Agriculture)
  • James McKean (Iowa State University)
  • T. Frana (Iowa State University)
  • M. Cox (University of Arkansas at Fayetteville)
  • M. G. Johnson (University of Arkansas at Fayetteville)
  • R. Nannapaneni (University of Arkansas at Fayetteville)
  • A. Pinkerton-Hogness (United States Department of Agriculture)
  • F. Rivera (United States Department of Agriculture)


The goal of this study was to determine the distribution of Listeria monocytogenes in cull sows and their pork. Two trials were conducted at a single packing plant in 2001 (n=179 cull sows) and in 2002 (n= 160 cull sows). Fecal samples collected antemortem (trial 1) as well as animal tissues, carcass, and environmental swabs, and meat block samples collected at the abattoir (trials 1 and 2) were analyzed. When results from both trials were combined, overall L. monocytogenes was detected in five or 0.17% of the total samples (n=2,858). Specifically, L. monocytogenes was confirmed in a tonsil sample (0.55% of tonsils positive) and in a carcass swab sample (0.56% of carcasses) before the organic acid rinse. L. monocytogenes was recovered in three (1.21%) meat block samples (n=213). These data indicate that L. monocytogenes is present in the cull sow and their pork.

Keywords: ASL R1809

How to Cite:

Wesley, I. V., Larsen, S. T., Hurd, H. S., McKean, J., Frana, T., Cox, M., Johnson, M. G., Nannapaneni, R., Pinkerton-Hogness, A. & Rivera, F., (2003) “The Prevalence of L. monocytogenes in Cull Sows”, Iowa State University Animal Industry Report 1(1).

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Published on
01 Jan 2003
Peer Reviewed