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FDA Finds Rodents, Manure Piles at Farms in Egg Recall
Date:8/31/2010

By Amanda Gardner
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Aug. 30 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. health investigators on Monday detailed a slew of violations that included the presence of manure pits, rodents and dead flies at two Iowa farms implicated in the recent egg recall due to salmonella infection.

"These are significant deviations from what should be happening," Michael Taylor, deputy commissioner for foods at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, said during an afternoon news conference at which the agency released the results of what is known as a "483" inspection report.

The "observations" are a clear violation of the new egg rule put into place in July, added David Elder, director of the FDA's Office of Regional Operations.

Both Wright County Egg and Hillandale Farms "failed to fully implement and follow procedures in its salmonella and derivatives prevention plan," Elder said.

At Wright County Egg, infractions included manure piles seeping into hen houses.

"In some cases, the manure piles were four-to-eight feet high," Elder said.

Rodents and wildlife, including wild birds, also had easy access to poultry houses, and investigators observed "dead flies too numerous to count" and dead flies which were "crushed underfoot" when employees traversed the poultry houses, Elder said.

Dead maggots were even observed in the manure at one farm.

Also, "employees failed to change protective clothing when moving from one house to another," Elder said, and they weren't sanitizing equipment.

Similar violations were logged at Hillandale, with rodents having convenient entryways into the poultry houses. Standing water was found near manure piles and "uncaged hens were tracking manure from the manure pit into the caged areas," Elder said.

"There was a failure to manage waste from animals that created a risk for contamination," Taylor concluded.

At the same news conference, Dr. Jeff Farr
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