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European Health and Digital Executive Agency (HaDEA)
News article6 July 2022European Health and Digital Executive Agency

Safeguarding animal and human health: EU’s successful fight against salmonellosis

world zoonoses day
© European Union 2022. All rights reserved.

World Zoonoses Day is observed annually on 6 July. The day aims at spreading awareness on the importance of controlling zoonoses - diseases that can spread between animals and humans.

There are many types of zoonotic diseases, however, some are more common and prevalent than others.

Salmonella is the most frequently reported cause of foodborne outbreaks in the EU. The European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) has estimated that the overall economic burden of human salmonellosis could be as high as €3 billion a year. Symptoms vary from very mild to severe and fatal.

Salmonella spp (several species) is transmitted through the consumption of contaminated food such as eggs, pig meat and poultry meat. Thus, controlling the source of infection in animals is crucial in breaking the transmission chain from animals to humans.

The EU co-finances actions to prevent, detect, control or eliminate animal diseases through its veterinary programmes. Enhanced Salmonella programmes in poultry have been implemented in all EU countries to reduce the bacteria in poultry flocks (laying hens, broilers and turkeys). This includes sample testing at different levels of the production chain.

The coordinated approach by all EU actors has had significant results and can be considered a major success. Salmonella cases fell by almost 50% in the EU between 2004 and 2009. In 2020, 52,702 people were affected compared to 88,000 in 2019.


HADEA is managing the food strand of the Single Market programme. It implements the European Commission’s actions to protect human, animal and plant health. Among the funding areas, the veterinary programmes aim at reducing the negative impact of animal diseases on health and food safety.


EU Policy on food-borne diseases (zoonoses)


Publication date
6 July 2022
European Health and Digital Executive Agency
Programme Sector
Single Market Programme Food Chain
EUFundedFood safety