Food safety refers to “a scientific discipline describing handling, preparation, and storage of food in ways that prevent foodborne illness. This includes a number of routines that should be followed to avoid potentially severe health hazards.” Food safety has always been of prime concern among the food manufacturing world. Foodborne diseases are one large aspect of food safety which is why poultry, meat and egg producer are working on this issue to ensure the security of their food products. A key factor includes an effective fly (eggs, larva, pupal stage or adults) management program at the farm. Fly menace is a global challenge faced by poultry farmers, not only challenging the food’s safety for a consuming public, but also affecting the farm profits. Billions of dollars are being spent to alleviate the harm done due to the fly problem at the farm level, not only to improve the farm’s hygienic conditions, but also to prevent the root causes behind many infectious diseases which augment poor performance and productivity at the farm level. With respect to food safety, special attention must be given to preventing contamination of poultry feed, and the products made from egg and meat, where flies thrive based on using these products as their primary development platform.
House flies transmits more than 100 human and animal disease causing organisms including protozoa, bacteria, viruses, rickettsia, fungi, and worms. House flies are considered intermediate hosts for tapeworms, and may transmit ascarids to caged birds. Flies mechanically carry ascarid and other nematode eggs on their feet from manure to pens, feed, and water. Fly maggots ingest tapeworm and ascarid eggs from the poultry manure, and retain them in the gut until maturity. In turn, infected flies are ingested by the feeding birds.
In the past, fly control measures relied almost exclusively on harmful chemicals and pesticides to keep the populations below dangerous levels or nuisance thresholds. Since these thresholds are not well defined, control practices generally have been carried out when the flies were observed in the poultry farms. To help prevent flies, very few farmers are following integrated pest management (IPM) programs. IPM programs emphasize multiple control methods to prevent pests, as opposed to a reliance on pesticides alone.
Flies get attracted to poultry farms by several factors, but mainly the poultry manure and wet feed. The manure moisture and ammonia make the environment favorable for fly attraction, breeding and feeding. The management of manure is a crucial practice for preventing the fly menace. Foul smelling matter present, at or around the farm, also is a factor in seeing high fly populations in poultry farming. In such cases the problem needs a much higher level of attention in order to control the surrounding environment as well. Moist organic matter inside the farm also attracts the different types of fly population.
Extensive or improper use of pesticides results in the destruction of biological control agents and the development of pesticide resistance. It can also create harmful and illegal residues in meat and eggs, and can contaminate the environment. Destruction of biological control agents and pesticide resistance result in larger pest populations, increased pesticide use, and higher control costs.
Fertile Ground’s Fly Treatment eliminates incidences of fly outbreaks through microbial alteration of the microenvironment, and through structural modification, preventing the larvae from hatching. Additionally, the decomposition activity of the microbes in the product enhances the nutrient content of the manure and thus, creates a value-added product. The product is non-toxic, non-caustic, non-acidic, non-pathogenic (harmless to humans, plants and animals), and biodegradable and replaces the need to use harmful chemicals that cause additional stress to poultry.