There is an increasing interest for monitoring the occurrence of antimicrobial resistance in non-clinical reservoirs. It is virtually impossible to obtain samples from healthy humans and there can be ethical problems with sensitivity of data collected from individuals. Thus, sewage has been suggested as an alternative to obtain population-wide samples.

The Slaughterhouse Wastewater Surveillance is part of the Global Sewage Surveillance study, supported by the Novo Nordisk Foundation, WHO and DTU Food, and seeks additional contributors in the common goal of preventing infectious diseases and elucidating robust treatment strategies within a One Health approach.

In 2017, around 90 countries have collected sewage samples in June and November for the project. The samples are been processed, sequenced and analysis is ongoing on DTU. In addition, several minor projects have been set up in Europe and Asia to validate the concept by collecting sewage from other niches such as from hospitals, slaughterhouses, agricultural areas, farms etc. This part of the project will now be fortified by collecting wastewater from domestic animal slaughterhouses for comparison purposes.

FAO has joined forces with the study and encourage its members to become part of this study.
To collect representative sewage samples from domestic slaughterhouses around the world and analyze these for the occurrence of pathogens, antimicrobial resistance genes and other hazards, using, amongst others, metagenomic analysis.
The current Global Sewage Surveillance project is a six year-project, running in the years 2017-2022. During these six years, sampling for point prevalence studies will be set-up four times in the early phase of the project period. The sampling months are: June and November 2017, and further June and November 2018.

Sampling: The intention is to collect one sample (1 L) representative of the waste water from a domestic animal slaughterhouse. The waste water sample should be collected from the main flow outlet of the slaughter line, preferably in relation to removal of internal organs, and contain representative fecal matter from as many slaughtered animals as possible.

Storage of samples: The samples must be stored at -80 degrees Celsius and sent to DTU Food, Denmark, for analysis after agreement with DTU Food.
Funding possibilities related to sample collection
As organizers of this sampling we offer to provide sample containers and packaging material. In addition, we cover all shipping expenses incl. custom fees. Additional funding is not available related to the sample collection or potential additional analysis at the participant institute.

For further details, please contact Rene S. Hendriksen ( or Jette Kjeldgaard (
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