Our latest research paper has just been published in the journal "Poultry Science" and focuses on the detection of eggs in carcasses and products from spent hens. This work was done with the support of the Canadian Poultry & Egg Processors Council.
The presence of egg protein in spent fowl products produced under current practices was investigated to assess the risk of these food products to egg-allergic consumers and to determine if precautionary allergen labelling (PAL) is recommended. The slaughter and processing operations of spent poultry in two Canadian facilities were studied. Raw hens (n = 134) and intermediate and processed products containing spent fowls (n = 57) were tested by ELISA. All samples tested positive for egg protein. In addition, 88 water samples from the cooling tanks were analyzed and indicated that this step may be the source of the overall contamination observed with an increase in egg protein over time during the production program. Since egg contamination is not adequately controlled under current good production practices, the use of the PAL method would be recommended for raw spent fowl products.
The article is freely available at the following link: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psj.2022.102003