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Br Poult Sci. 2019 Aug;60(4):472-477. doi: 10.1080/00071668.2019.1614529. Epub 2019 Jun 5.

Exposure to inhalable dust of workers shackling birds frequently exceeds occupational exposure level in abattoirs in Western France.

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a EPISABE , ANSES, Ploufragan-Plouzané Laboratory , Ploufragan , France.
b Service Sanitaire , ITAVI, Zoopôle de Beaucemaine , Ploufragan , France.


1. The objectives of this study were to measure the exposure of workers to dust when shackling poultry in abattoirs, and to identify the most effective measures to prevent human exposure to dust. The relationship between respiratory health of workers and their occupational exposure to dust was assessed. 2. Exposure to dust (aerial particles inhaled through the nose and mouth) exceeded the occupational exposure limit (maximum 10 mg/m3 over 8 h) in 65 out of 109 workers from 27 abattoirs, in the context of high levels of ambient aerial dust in small, closed shackling cubicles. Ceiling air ducts for supply of air reduced worker exposure to dust in these buildings. 3. Two-thirds of the 86 workers interviewed reported work-related respiratory symptoms. The self-reported risk of suffering from coughing tended to be associated with the highest exposure to inhalable dust and respiratory dust (aerial particles penetrating up to alveoli) observed in the study. 4. The present study demonstrates that workers may be exposed to considerable amounts of dust when shackling birds before stunning.


Dust; exposure; occupational health; poultry; slaughter

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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