Northern Ireland-based integrator Moy Park has announced that the cost of its campylobacter reduction research to date has topped more than £1m.

The firm made the announcement during the Food Standard Agency’s annual Food Safety Week, which this year focuses on reducing campylobacter in the food chain. Its key message this year is telling consumers not to wash chicken before cooking.

Moy Park said work on reducing campylobacter infection had taken place at 600 of the firm’s farms across Northern Ireland and England, with inputs such as feed and water, as well as biosecurity measures and stock management techniques, all examined.

See also: A Poultry World report from the recent NFU campylobacter conference

“The company has invested substantially in its farms and processing facilities, including implementing a training programme for more than 200 farmers and catching teams, biosecurity monitoring and enhanced testing programmes,” a spokeswoman for Moy Park said.

She added the company was now using on-farm testing kits that give rapid feedback to farmers on the status of flocks via text message.

Moy Park also said it was one of the first processors to promote directly to consumers that poultry is safe to eat without washing, by adding a “no need to wash” sticker on its own-branded whole birds.