Ventilating free-run layer barns

Ventilating free-run layer barns

Controlling ammonia and dust levels is important for birds and workers.

Poultry groups slam new TTP pact

Poultry groups slam new TTP pact

Poultry groups have called it a giveaway, failure and deeply concerning.

UPDATE: July 14, 2018 * Advisory liftedLOCATION: Northwest area of the Niagara region, OntarioOn behalf of Ontario’s four feather boards, the Feather Board Command Centre (FBCC) is announcing that the biosecurity ILT advisory that was issued to all commercial poultry farmers and small flock growers in the northwestern part of the Niagara Region on March 16, 2018 has now been lifted.The owner of the commercial broiler chicken operation involved, has collaborated closely with their veterinarian, processor and hatchery, Chicken Farmers of Ontario staff and the FBCC to successfully apply enhanced biosecurity and disease control measures as described in the ILT response protocol. Rigorous adherence to biosecurity principles by farmers in the risk area as well as by service providers over the last 3 months has prevented spread of the disease. Ongoing veterinary\ surveillance indicates no further signs of respiratory illness.Normal biosecurity levels can now be restored.Farmers should continue to be very diligent in observing their flocks, monitoring mortalities and tracking feed and water consumption. If you suspect any signs of infectious disease, please contact your veterinarian and your Board immediately. UPDATE:  April 30, 2018LOCATION: Northwest area of the Niagara region, OntarioThe FBCC is issuing an update to the March 16, 2018 Biosecurity Advisory relating to the diagnosis of ILT on a commercial broiler chicken farm in the northwestern part of the Niagara Region.A second case of ILT has been identified in a subsequent crop of vaccinated broiler chickens being raised in the same barn as the first case. However, the attending veterinarian stated that the vaccine appears to be effective in preventing new cases as general flock health is improving. It is important to remember that the ILT virus can be very persistent in litter, on interior wood surfaces and the environment.FBCC continues to coordinate disease response efforts with Chicken Farmers of Ontario, the farmer, their veterinarian, OMAFRA and industry partners to eliminate the disease on the index farm and prevent spread of the virus.All farmers, family food growers and service providers operating in the advisory area are strongly advised to maintain enhanced biosecurity measures at this time.Active flock health monitoring continues on-site as well as on linked farms and those nearby. To date there have been no further reports of ILT beyond the index farm.The enhanced biosecurity advisory area will remain in place until disease control can be assured. As your farm has been identified as being located within the 10km biosecurity advisory area, we request that you remain vigilant in following the enhanced biosecurity procedures that are in effect.Should you suspect any signs of health concerns in your flock, please contact your veterinarian as well as your Board.ILT is a serious, contagious disease caused by a respiratory virus.Signs to look for include: increased mortality, noisy breathing, head-shaking, off feed, decreased egg production, inactivity, ruffled feathers and conjunctivitis.Please advise any visitors to your premises of your biosecurity protocols because of this situation and keep a logbook of movement in relation to your farm.Minimize visits to other poultry production sites, avoid exchanging equipment with other poultry production sites or ensure that it is washed and disinfected.Ensure all personnel in contact with birds wear boots, protective suits, head coverings and gloves/proper handwashing procedures. Ensure adequate control of vermin and wild birds.UPDATE: March 22, 2018LOCATION: Northwest area of the Niagara region, OntarioThe FBCC is issuing an update to the March 16, 2018 Biosecurity Advisory relating to the diagnosis of ILT on a commercial broiler chicken farm in the northwestern part of the Niagara Region.WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:FBCC is coordinating efforts with Chicken Farmers of Ontario, the farmer, their veterinarian and industry partners to control spread and prevent reoccurrence of the disease on the index farm including: Extensive cleaning/disinfection/heating procedures once birds were shipped; Increased production downtime and postponement of placement; Inoculation of incoming chicks with a vaccine type approved for eradication; and Actively monitoring farms at highest risk. The Animal Health Lab at University of Guelph has determined that the virus strain associated with this case is indistinguishable from the ILT virus which caused a significant outbreak in Niagara in 2004.As your farm has been identified as being located within the 10km biosecurity advisory area, we recommend that you remain vigilant in following the enhanced biosecurity procedures that are in effect.Should you suspect any signs of health concerns in your flock, please contact your veterinarian as well as your Board. ILT is a serious, contagious disease caused by a respiratory virus. Signs to look for include: increased mortality, noisy breathing, head-shaking, off feed, decreased egg production, inactivity, ruffled feathers and conjunctivitis.Please advise any visitors to your premises of your biosecurity protocols because of this situation and keep a logbook of movement in relation to your farm. Minimize visits to other poultry production sites, avoid exchanging equipment with other poultry production sites or ensure that it is washed and disinfected. Ensure all personnel in contact with birds wear boots, protective suits, head coverings and gloves/proper handwashing procedures. Ensure adequate control of vermin and wild birds.Initial alert:DATE: March 16, 2018LOCATION: Northwest area of the Niagara region, OntarioDETAILS: On behalf of the four feather boards, the Feather Board Command Centre (FBCC) is issuing an ILT Biosecurity Advisory to all poultry industry service providers operating in the northwestern part of the Niagara Region. A Biosecurity Advisory Area map is being provided to assist with routing and enhanced biosecurity measures.FBCC has been notified by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA), that Infectious Laryngotracheitis (ILT) has been diagnosed on a commercial broiler chicken farm in the northwestern part of the Niagara region. All farmers and small flock growers within 10 km of the affected farm are being notified by board staff and advised to enhance their biosecurity and closely monitor flock health.This is the first diagnosis of ILT in an Ontario broiler chicken flock in several years. The high broiler chicken density in the area creates the potential for spread to otherunvaccinated birds. OMAFRA reports that the farmer is following proper biosecurity protocols and the situation is under control.Please reinforce your biosecurity protocols if working with flocks or travelling through this area of the Niagara Region. Suspend all non-essential visits. For essential visits, apply the following recommended biosecurity measures: wearing boots, protection suits, hats and gloves/hand washing. All deliveries/loading should be last on the route. Wash and disinfect the truck's undercarriage and steps before proceeding with any other delivery/loading. Do not go to another farm within 12 hours.Should you be aware of health concerns in flocks you deal with, please advise the farmer to contact their veterinarian as well as their Board.We anticipate this advisory status to last until at least late April.SOURCE:Feather Board Command Centre
Check out Canadian Poultry magazine's first episode of the Ask the Vet Podcast on Salmonella!Why is Salmonella such an important topic for the poultry industry and what can producers due to prevent it? Tom Inglis, CEO of Poultry Health Services, discuses this issue in our first Ask the Vet podcast.LISTEN NOW!Do you have a poultry health question you want answered on a future episode? Send it to  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  and one of our experts will be happy to answer it.
DATE: June 17, 2018LOCATION: City of Kawartha Lakes County, OntarioDETAILS: ILT has been diagnosed in a backyard poultry flock within the City of Kawartha Lakes County, Ontario. OMAFRA provided no specific location as this is an unregistered flock but has indicated that all birds on the farm have been depopulated and that there are no plans to re-stock in the near future.Farmers and small flock growers in this area are being contacted and advised to enhance their biosecurity programs. Please reinforce your biosecurity protocols if working with flocks or travelling through this area. This advisory status is anticipated to last until the end of July 2018.SOURCE:https://gallery.mailchimp.com/4baae7f69906e1771dd506b2b/files/a1592d79-7c99-42f4-b08b-8f9ba043378c/ILT_City_of_Kawartha_Lakes_June_2018_Industry_Advisory.pdf
DATE: June 14, 2018LOCATION: Village of Donchevo [Dobrich]DETAILS: An outbreak of a virulent bird flu virus has spread to another farm in northeastern Bulgaria, the national food safety agency reported on June 13, 2018.A three-kilometer protection zone was set around the farm in the village of Donchevo [Dobrich] and the sale of eggs and the movement of domestic, wild, and other birds was banned within it, the agency said in a statement.Two weeks ago, the agency authorities reported an outbreak of the virus on a duck farm in the village of Stefanovo [Dobrich] and said birds on the farm were being culled.Bulgaria has reported a handful of outbreaks in the past year, some involving the highly pathogenic H5N8 bird flu virus.SOURCE:http://www.promedmail.org/post/5856014ProMED-mail posthttp://www.promedmail.org/ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseaseshttp://www.isid.org
DATE: June 10, 2018LOCATION: 36 statesDETAILS: Multistate outbreaks of salmonella infections linked to contact with live poultry in backyard flocks. As of June 1, 2018, 124 people infected with the outbreak strains of salmonella have been reported from 36 states.Epidemiologic, traceback, and laboratory findings link these outbreaks to contact with live poultry, such as chicks and ducklings, which come from multiple hatcheries. In interviews, 55 (74 per cent) of 74 ill people with information available reported contact with chicks or ducklings in the week before their illness started. People reported obtaining chicks and ducklings from several sources, including feed supply stores, websites, hatcheries, and from relatives.A total of 70 outbreaks of salmonella infections have been linked to contact with backyard flocks since 2000 [see URL for link to PDF]. In 2017, CDC reported the largest number of illnesses ever recorded linked to backyard flocks.SOURCE:http://www.promedmail.org/post/5848079ProMED-mail posthttp://www.promedmail.org/ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseaseshttp://www.isid.org
DATE: June 7, 2018LOCATION: San Bernardino County, CaliforniaDETAILS: USDA confirms additional cases of virulent Newcastle disease in backyard birds in California.The United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service confirmed three additional cases of virulent Newcastle disease in backyard birds in San Bernardino County, California.Virulent Newcastle disease has not been found in commercial poultry in the United States since 2003.SOURCE:http://www.promedmail.org/post/5844854ProMED-mail posthttp://www.promedmail.org/ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseaseshttp://www.isid.org
DATE: June 7, 2018LOCATION: Liaozhong district, Shenyang, LiaoningDETAILS: On May 22, a new stain of a listed disease was confirmed on a farm in the Liaozahong district. Control measures are underway. Event status is continuing to be updated.SOURCE:http://www.promedmail.org/post/5844854ProMED-mail posthttp://www.promedmail.org/ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseaseshttp://www.isid.org
In a chicken industry that is minimizing the use of antibiotics, our ability to provide an optimal clean environment is paramount. This can be achieved through cleaning and disinfection (C&D) and strict biosecurity.
DATE: May 30, 2018LOCATION: Tarkeshwor municipality, Lambagar, Kathmandu, BagmatiDETAILS: Ducks reared in backyard system started to show torticollis and greenish white diarrhea and died. Dead ducks were disposed of properly. A total of 5,393 ducks, 3,720 eggs and 250 kg feed have been destroyed and disposed of by the Rapid Response Team. Stamping out operations, cleaning and disinfection, sealing of infected premises have been completed. Post operation surveillance outside the containment area is ongoing.SOURCE:http://www.promedmail.org/post/5828169ProMED-mail posthttp://www.promedmail.org/ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseaseshttp://www.isid.org
DATE: May 26, 2018LOCATION: Arlov, Burlov, Skane LanDETAILS: A detection of LPAI has been done in a breeding farm of pheasants for restocking of game. There have not been clinical signs of disease among the animals. The pheasants were tested in accordance with the Swedish surveillance programme for avian influenza in poultry by routine sampling of blood samples.SOURCE:http://www.promedmail.org/post/5820472ProMED-mail posthttp://www.promedmail.org/ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseaseshttp://www.isid.org
DATE: May 19, 2018LOCATION: Khairehani, Chitwon, NarayaniDETAILS: Commercial layers of 72 weeks, reared by the farmer, started exhibiting symptoms of cyanotic comb, mucus discharge from nostril, swollen head, and sudden death. Loss of egg production and feed consumption were observed.Free ranged local domestic ducks nearby the infected farm started to die two weeks earlier. However, this mortality was not reported. Birds in the affected farm died within two-weeks time. Dead birds were disposed of in the disposal pit nearby the farm with proper disinfection. Stamping out of the birds in the infected zone has started.SOURCE:http://www.promedmail.org/post/5805891ProMED-mail posthttp://www.promedmail.org/ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseaseshttp://www.isid.org
DATE: May 18, 2018LOCATION: Los Angeles County, CaliforniaDETAILS: The United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) confirmed the presence of virulent Newcastle disease in a small flock of backyard exhibition chickens in Los Angeles County, California.It is important to note that the presence of the disease is not a food safety concern. This is the first case of virulent Newcastle disease, previously referred to as exotic Newcastle disease, in the U.S. since 2003.No human cases of Newcastle disease have ever occurred from eating poultry products. Properly cooked poultry products are safe to eat. In very rare instances people working directly with sick birds can become infected.Symptoms are usually very mild and limited to conjunctivitis and/or influenza-like symptoms. Infection is easily prevented by using standard personal protective equipment.APHIS is working closely with the California Department of Food and Agriculture to respond to the finding. Federal and State partners are also conducting additional surveillance and testing in the area.SOURCE:http://www.promedmail.org/post/5804931ProMED-mail posthttp://www.promedmail.org/ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseaseshttp://www.isid.org
Vast amounts of data are being collected on Canada’s farms through the advent of precision agriculture technology and the Internet of Things (IOT).Many types of tools, equipment and devices gather data on everything from crop yields to how many steps an animal takes in a day. However, much of that data is underutilized because it’s collected by systems that don’t or can’t communicate with each other.The need for better decision-making on farms through better data use resulted in Ontario Precision Agri-Food (OPAF), a partnership of agricultural organizations led by Ontario Agri-Food Technologies (OAFT) that’s developing an open agri-food innovation platform to connect and share data.The goal, according to lead director Dr. Karen Hand of Precision Strategic Solutions, is getting data, wherever it exists (both data repositories in industry or government and data generated by countless sensors) so it can be used to help advance important food production issues like food safety, traceability and plant and animal disease surveillance.For example, information about the prevalence and control of insect pests like cutworms that damage soybean crops lies with many different people and organizations, including university and government researchers, crop advisors, input suppliers and farmers.“There is no single spot where all of the information about a particular pest can be accessed in a robust, science-based system and used in decision-making and that’s where OPAF’s platform will help,” Hand says.Pilot projects are underway with Ontario’s grain, dairy and poultry producers to identify their needs in areas like crop protection, sustainability and food safety and how OPAF can provide data-driven solutions to benefit farmers.“We sit down with farmers, advisors, associations, government and researchers to find out what data they have, where they exist and if we were able to connect them, what value or benefit that would offer participants – either specific to the commodity they are producing or on larger food-related issues such as food safety or impact on trade,” she explains.And OPAF’s efforts are gaining global recognition. Earlier this year, Internet of Food and Farm 2020, a large project in the European Union exploring the potential of IOT technologies of European food and farming, recognized OPAF as one of three global projects to collaborate with.“This is going to be changing the face of data enablement in Canada and contributing globally,” says Tyler Whale of Ontario Agri-Food Technologies (OAFT). “We are creating a platform that is the base of something new, and although we are piloting this in Ontario, it will be available nationwide to those who want to use it.”OPAF partners include OAFT, University of Guelph, University of Waterloo, Niagara College, Vineland Research and Innovation Centre, Livestock Research Innovation Corporation, Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association, Grain Farmers of Ontario, Ontario Federation of Agriculture, Farm Credit Canada, Ontario Agri-Business Association, Bioindustrial Innovation Canada, and Golden Horseshoe Farm and Food Alliance.This project was funded by Growing Forward 2, a federal-provincial-territorial initiative. The Agricultural Adaptation Council assists with GF2 delivery in Ontario.
High ambient temperatures mean detrimental performance and reduced profits for producers. Extreme cases cause suffering and death in all poultry breeds. Phytogenic feed additives in poultry diets help alleviate the negative impacts of heat stress by exerting an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effect in birds.Poultry producers commonly face the challenge of heat stress either seasonally or year-round. Poultry farmed in hot and humid countries are genetically derived from strains originally bred in, and selected for, the cool climates of Europe and North America. Rearing birds outside of their thermal comfort zone could mean failing to achieve full genetic potential. Producers in warmer climates or those in cooler zones who adjust their shed temperatures to their own comfort levels, not to that of their birds, should consider the impact of heat stress on flocks. | READ MORE 
Consumers pressure restaurants and food companies to make the practice mandatory, but who will pay the extra costs?A steady stream of restaurant and food companies proclaim intentions to use eggs only from free-run operations in the future, but egg producers wonder who is willing to pay the cost of more expensive production methods.Some barns have already moved to systems with enriched housing, defined as larger cages with nesting areas, dust baths and room for each chicken to spread its wings and generally express normal behaviour. | For the full story, CLICK HERE
Capturing at least some of the heat from stale or “old” air being exhausted from poultry and hog barns is one more step in developing intensive livestock operations with net zero energy barns. The net zero term means a barn is producing as much energy as it is using.Two poultry barns in Alberta, for example, have installed heat recovery systems that capture heat from air being exhausted from broiler and layer barns and use it to warm cold fresh air that’s being vented into the barn.The heat recovery ventilators (HRV), used primarily in winter months, take some of the cold edge off the fresh incoming air, helping to reduce heating costs inside the barn. It’s not so dramatic as being able to feel hot air going out, and then being replaced inside the heat exchanger with hot fresh air coming in, but the system can warm up cold winter air by 15 to 20 degrees. | For the full story, CLICK HERE
Conventional cage laying barns have always been dusty, notes Harry Huffman, an agricultural engineer based in London, Ont. “Thus, I would assume the new floor and aviary style of housing systems will continue to be dusty as well.” Huffman notes that the more important ventilation design parameters in a layer barn hinge around the number and size of birds being housed, and how airflow should occur through the airspace to accommodate the building specs.
Sustainability, in the broadest sense, simply refers to maintaining the conditions necessary to our well-being. This clearly includes a healthy environment – for example, clean air, clean water, fertile soil and a stable climate. It also includes healthy societies and communities, in which we have opportunities to pursue what we understand to be a good life. And, importantly, it requires healthy economies.
Chicken Farmers of Ontario (CFO) is providing a second Ontario chicken processor with a new and unique opportunity to supply smaller-sized chickens, ‘Small Whole Birds’, aimed at meeting the demands of distinct Ontario consumer markets, including the increasingly popular Portuguese barbecue restaurants or ‘churrasqueiras’.“Earlier this year, CFO strengthened its growing suite of processing programs, which are designed to meet new and emerging markets and satisfy the complex demands of today’s consumers,” said Ed Benjamins, chair, Chicken Farmers of Ontario. “With the introduction of CFO’s Small Whole Bird Supply Program, Ontarians can look forward to even more chicken choices on retail shelves, in restaurants and foodservice establishments across the province,” stated Benjamins.The announcement welcomes a second Ontario processor into this new program. Sure Fresh Foods Inc., of Bradford, Ont., is planning to start processing ‘Small Whole Birds’ for the Portuguese barbeque market in early fall of 2018.“CFO is pleased to announce that Sure Fresh Foods will target the needs of a specific market which is intended to further enhance the ability of our industry to meet consumer demand for Premium Ontario Chicken,” said Rob Dougans, president & CEO of CFO. “All of our processor programs are designed with the consumer in mind and are developed through strategic consultation across the chicken industry value chain.”CFO’s Small Whole Bird Supply Program was established with the purpose of meeting the demands of consumer markets requiring chickens that are smaller than what is traditionally grown and processed in Ontario (approximately 1.7 kg versus 2.2 kg). Serving these distinct markets may also require different processing equipment than is used in the mainstream chicken industry to accommodate the smaller size of the bird.To learn more about how the chicken industry is committed to providing Ontarians with even more choice, check out some of the other Chicken Farmers of Ontario Programs for Ontario Processors by clicking here.
It seems like every second conversation about installing new equipment in barns eventually leads to boilers. Now I’ll grant, it may be because I have a tender spot in my heart for boilers due to my plumbing and gasfitting background. They have become so much more technical over the past few years.
Sustainability has been a topic of discussion globally for quite some time now. It is a term that we have all heard, but what exactly does it mean? How can we responsibly apply this concept to the poultry industry from the ground up?
Development of the avian embryo, or chick, can be categorized in to one of two strategies designed to meet two very different physiological and biological needs. The avian embryo will develop as either an altricial or precocial chick, each with their own specific set of needs necessary to survive after hatch.  
Bill Van Heyst grew up on a mixed farm near Grand Bend, Ont. He remembers looking after 500 laying hens – that was the maximum amount allowed under quota at the time. He also remembers switching over the old tunnel ventilated 1960s vintage poultry barn to battery cages from free-range. If he’d only known then that free-range would be fashionable once again…
Broiler litter is a mixture of poultry manure, bedding, feathers, and spilled feed. The actual nutrient content of a manure sample varies. Nutrient concentration of broiler litter is variable due to age of bird, composition of the diet, how the manure is handled, and the number of batches of birds raised since the last house clean out. The average nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) content of broiler litter is 62, 59, and 40 lbs/ton, respectively. Having your manure analyzed for its actual plant nutrient content is recommended. Armed with this and appropriate soil test information you can decide on the best plan of action to use poultry litter for specific cropping needs. | READ MORE
Lilydale, one of Canada's leading poultry brands is celebrating an important milestone. Lilydale is amongst Canada's most remarkable business success stories with innovative products such as fully cooked, ready to eat carved poultry or Ancient Grains breaded turkey strips.It's early 1940s and a group of Alberta farmers join together to create a co-operative. At first, the co-operative focuses on eggs but in 1941, the group acquires a processing plant and becomes known as Alberta Poultry Producers Limited. The plant processes both eggs and poultry.Over the years, the Alberta Poultry Producers Limited business grows and the organization expands its production capabilities in Alberta, British Columbia and Saskatchewan. The name Lilydale first appears in 1976 when the group becomes known as Lilydale Co-operative Limited. In 2005, the company renames itself Lilydale Inc. and in 2012 is acquired by Sofina Foods Inc."Lilydale has become and remains one of Canada's favourite fresh and further processed poultry product manufacturers because of the dedication, passion and hard work of all the employees, past and present, who tirelessly worked to grow its presence and provide high quality and delicious poultry products," said Wendy Harris, director, marketing for the Lilydale brand at Sofina Foods Inc."Giving back to the communities is an integral part of our company's values. With the support of the Sofina Foundation, our employees volunteered their time at the Ronald McDonald House Charities Northern Alberta to clean, paint and redesign the kitchen which was not meeting the needs of the families that this charity serves. In addition, each year, our employees participate in our Dream Builders' Campaign aiming at collecting funds for local children's charities. During the 2017 festive season, over 10,000 families were able to enjoy a turkey dinner through our support of various charities and shelters across the country," added Harris.To mark this special anniversary year, Lilydale revamped its website (www.lilydale.com) and packaging, and is launching several initiatives including a contest: "75 Years, 75 Winners." The contest opened June 4th in key markets in Canada and closes August 5th. 
AGCO Corporation, a global leader in the design, manufacture and distribution of agriculture equipment and solutions, will begin manufacturing Farmer Automatic egg production equipment in North America to better serve its largest market for these products. The decision also supports Canadian producers transitioning to new Code of Practice standards for the care, welfare and handling of their flocks.Farmer Automatic’s enriched colony housing and aviary systems will be produced at AGCO’s plant in Bremen, Alabama beginning later this year. The first products will be shipped from that facility in January 2019, with normal distribution to be maintained during the transition.“Manufacturing in North America is a long-term investment providing enhanced service and support for North American egg producers and a signal to the market that Farmer Automatic will continue to deliver high quality and innovation for years to come,” said Scott Becker, director of North America Commercial Egg for Cumberland Poultry, AGCO’s poultry production equipment brand.The state-of-the-art Bremen plant manufactures a broad range of Cumberland products used in poultry production facilities, including fans, heaters, tunnel doors, broiler nesting systems, power curtain machinery and environmental controls.Becker said establishing production in North America provides several important benefits to Farmer Automatic customers, including reduced shipping time, faster response to meet their needs, currency advantages and a full-system solution enabling producers to access the breadth of Cumberland’s product offerings.Farmer Automatic products were previously manufactured in Laer, Germany. Design and engineering functions will remain in Germany with the creation of the Farmer Automatic Engineering Innovation Center in the area later this year.Supporting new guidelinesFarmer Automatic systems currently meet new guidelines in the Canada Code of Practice introduced last year requiring all laying hens to be housed in enriched or cage-free systems by July 1, 2036.“Our Canadian dealer, Clark Ag Systems, works closely with its customers to ensure their systems have enough space, feed, water, nest area and scratch surface to meet the Code of Practice requirements for their production method,” Becker said.The Eco II System from Farmer Automatic provides all of the required enrichments and easy access to the flock with its large access doors. Farmer Automatic’s Combi II provides a solution for customers who may transition from enriched to cage-free in the future. The Combi II can be operated as both an Enriched Colony System with the doors closed or as a Cage-Free Aviary System with the door open.For those producers ready to transition to cage-free production today, the Loggia system offers excellent access to the flock, nests and egg belts with walkable floors and low system heights for easy inspection and management. The slight slope of the floor allows system eggs to roll onto the egg belt. The Loggia line was recently expanded to include the new Loggia 3 Plus, providing additional living space with a third tier allowing for greater bird density in many operations.Pullet rearing is easier with the Combi Pullet, capable of preparing birds to be housed in either enriched and/or aviary systems in the future. Multiple floor mesh sizes for the lower tier allow producers to tailor the system to their operation, and additional half levels create more space for greater stocking densities.Farmer Automatic systems can be installed in new egg production facilities or retrofitted to existing operations. For additional information, producers can contact Clark Ag Systems or visit www.farmerautomatic-inc.com.
SectorLayers, egg productionLocationRivière-Héva, Que.  ProductionMaurice Richard and his sons Jean-Philippe and Alexandre operate an enriched 70,000-bird layer operation over four barns.Equipment specsThree barns have enriched systems from Farmer Automatic, with the fourth being converted next year. All the barns are heated with pellet stoves, which heat water running through the barns’ concrete floors. Wood pellets are currently being used, but in the future the Richards plan to make pellets from the farm’s crop straw and fast-growing planted trees. The barns’ ventilation system is used to dry chicken manure, which is piled in grain silos between the barns. The dried manure is crushed and pelleted, then spread on the farm’s fields or sold. On sustainability“Sustainability is the key to the future,” Alexandre says. “There are so many ways to use everything we can. This not only makes us more sustainable, but we are also more autonomous and financially better off. My grandfather, although he passed on when I was young, was the founder of the farm and left to us the great legacy we have now. With my father always leaving a lot of room for me and my brother to try new things, we are trying to make the best of it.”   View the embedded image gallery online at: https://www.canadianpoultrymag.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=latest&layout=latest&Itemid=1#sigProGalleriad69debffa9
Pols Enterprises has always been committed to bringing the best and latest available equipment technologies to the Canadian agricultural market. Some of our latest products include the highest performing cage free housing system from Vencomatic, state-of-the-art barn management systems by Maximus and high efficiency fans from Dacs. Please feel free contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  for any inquiries regarding these, or other, products and new technologies.For more information, visit: www.polsltd.ca
Dealing with the high cost of food in the North is a constant challenge for producers and consumers. Through innovation and new thinking, Choice North Farms in Hay River is hoping to make a difference by undertaking the PoultryPonics Dome Project, supported with over $80,000 of CanNor funding.The announcement was made by Michael McLeod, Member of Parliament (Northwest Territories) on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for CanNor.Choice North Farms is a private egg producing company in Hay River. Their pilot project will integrate vertical hydroponic units and poultry production in a small geodesic dome. This combination will reduce the amount of nutrients and energy required for production, while providing a good supply of quality local fresh produce and meat substitutes.If the pilot project is successful, this innovative clean technology could be scaled and adapted in other Northern communities, promoting economic diversification, reducing the cost of living, and enhancing the quality of life in remote communities."The Government of Canada has long supported the development of the agriculture sector in the North. We are pleased to support innovative technologies that not only grow the economy of Hay River, but also have the potential to provide affordable food to Northern communities," McLeod said. CanNor has invested $80,497 in the project through its Strategic Investments in Northern Economic Development (SINED) program, with Choice North Farms contributing $67,910, the Government of the Northwest Territories injecting $6,586 and the Aurora Research Institute providing an additional $6,000. Total funding for the project is $160,993."We are thrilled at North Choice Farms to be able to pilot this green technology, thanks to the support of CanNor. We are confident it will allow us to produce more food locally while reducing our carbon footprint and production cost. This is great for our business, for the agricultural sector in the NWT and for Northern consumers, " said Kevin Wallington, business development manager, Choice North Farms.READ CP's related feature article: Chickens in the greenhouse
Dan Lenihan, who introduced the Cobb breed of chickens to Ireland and contributed to its success across the UK and Europe, has died at age 79.In the 1970s Cobb was one of the U.S. broiler breeds that transformed chicken from luxury to an everyday meal and Dan Lenihan saw this potential when he bought the assets of Cobb Ireland in 1974. This company had been established in the early 1960s to serve the Irish market at a time when there were severe animal health restrictions on imports of poultry.Cobb Ireland built the hatchery at Straffan, near Dublin, and after purchasing the business Dan Lenihan bought another hatchery at Mullingar, County Westmeath to expand production. This increased from less than 100,000 to more than two million parent stock chicks a year by 2000, delivering throughout Ireland and the UK.Cobb Ireland began exporting breeding stock to Taiwan and Syria in 1975 and as the Cobb breed has expanded across Europe, Middle East and Africa through the last 40 years, the company has played a significant role in this growth.During the last 20 years Dan Lenihan’s operation in Ireland has transitioned from a distributor to a contract producer for Cobb Europe. Ireland's unrivalled history in terms of notifiable diseases has played a key role in Cobb being able to protect supply to customers during the avian influenza issues that occur from time to time in Western Europe. The farms hold a combination of great grandparent and grandparent stock.“Dan has been a true ambassador for Cobb over the last 40 years,” said Mark Sams, general manager for Cobb Europe. “He was a trusted and respected partner who built up relationships within the industry from the U.S., Africa and as far as Australia. He will be deeply missed by us all.”Dan Lenihan was born in Newcastle West, County Limerick, and initially studied dairy science at Cork University. After working in a hatchery in Kill, County Kildare, he set up his own poultry business in Newcastle West with the initial Irish franchise for the Warren Brown egg layer and later sold this business to Whittaker's Hatchery in Cork.He is a former chairman of Bord Glad, the Irish Food Board, and also served as chairman of the Respect fund raising charity that helps people with an intellectual disability. He has also been chairman of the National Poultry Council in Ireland and of the Irish Chick Hatcheries Association.He is survived by wife Marian, son Daniel and daughter Caroline.
Bayer is pleased to announce it has partnered with The Do More Agriculture Foundation – a not-for-profit organization focused on raising awareness and promoting mental well-being for farmers in Canada.As part of the partnership, Bayer's Crop Science division has contributed $20,000 to the Foundation to support its mission of providing support and resources to farmers seeking mental health assistance.The need to support Canadian farmers' mental well-being has never been greater. According to a study from the University of Guelph, more than a third of Canadian producers are experiencing depression and over half experience anxiety. However, the stigma associated with mental health issues remains a significant barrier for those that need help.Forty per cent of Canadian producers reported they would feel uneasy about seeing professional help due to what other people may think."We believe that through this partnership we can help increase awareness of mental health issues and break the stigma that currently exists in the agriculture industry," said Al Driver, Bayer Crop Science Canada's president and CEO. "We see first-hand the challenges that farmers face and encourage them to access these resources to manage their well-being."The Do More Ag Foundation are champions for the mental well-being of Canadian producers and are focused on changing the culture of agriculture to one where producers are encouraged, supported and empowered to take care of themselves. This will be achieved by creating awareness, building community and supporting research."We are so appreciative to Bayer for supporting Do More Ag and Canadian producers. The support from Bayer will allow The Do More Agriculture Foundation to move forward with larger initiatives that will be able to support more producers across Canada," said Kim Keller, co-founder of the Foundation. "This will create more awareness around mental health and build more capacity within communities across Canada to be able to support community members who may be facing mental health challenges."With support from Bayer, Do More Ag will continue the conversation about mental well-being in an accessible way for producers, while breaking the stigma associated with mental health. It will encourage producers to talk about mental health within their operations, families and communities, with the hope of changing the culture in agriculture to one where all producers feel encouraged and supported to take care of their mental well-being.For more information about The Do More Agriculture Foundation, please visit www.domore.ag.
Owners Jeff and Joleen Bisschop produce Country Golden Yolks brand eggs with four other Fraser Valley farms, including organic (7,400 hens) and free-range (27,000 hens), with a pullet barn and egg packing on site.
Actium’s Compost Drums are based on a robust, simple design that is easy to operate and reliable. Our rotating insulated drums helps the composting “bugs” break down organic matter faster. Composting poultry mortalities creates a clean, pathogen and odor free compost. All that is required is a sufficient amount of a dry carbon source such as dry sawdust to be added to the drum with the mortalities. Contact us for more information! www.compostdrum.com (519) 527-2525Video produced at the 2018 National Poutlry Show by Canadian Poultry magazine.
Big Dutchman provides equipment to farms around the world and has been the worldwide leader in poultry, egg, and pig production systems since 1938.They offer practical, economical and environmentally-friendly solutions geared to your future needs. Big Dutchman stands for long-lasting quality, service, and unsurpassed know-how, and as the industry leader, our innovations will continue to positively impact the industries they serve.For more information, visit: http://bigdutchmanusa.com/Video produced at the 2018 National Poutlry Show by Canadian Poultry magazine. 
Research has shown that the consumption of long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids provides a myriad of health benefits, including lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease and death.Yet, few Americans are consuming enough of this vital nutrient to reap those benefits, a deficiency researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences hope to change by fortifying foods people frequently eat — eggs and chicken — with the heart healthy long-chain omega-3 fatty acids."With the incidence of obesity, heart disease and insulin resistance increasing toward epidemic proportions in the United States, people must make changes to improve their health," said Kevin Harvatine, associate professor of nutritional physiology in the Department of Animal Science."Production of nutritionally enriched eggs and poultry meat will help consumers meet health goals and help egg and poultry producers to increase the value of their products."Harvatine and Robert Elkin, professor of avian nutritional biochemistry, have collaborated in this research area since 2011, conducting numerous studies at the Penn State Poultry Education and Research Center with both laying hens and broiler (meat-type) chickens. Elkin has expertise in poultry nutrition and a long history of work aimed at modifying egg cholesterol content, while Harvatine has expertise in lipid (fat) nutrition and metabolism in dairy cattle.The researchers explained that alpha-linolenic acid is an 18-carbon omega-3 fatty acid found in flaxseed, walnuts, soybeans, nut oils and leafy vegetables. It is one of two essential fatty acids that the human body cannot produce on its own but is vital for cardiovascular, cognitive and immune system health. It also is touted for its anti-inflammatory properties.The other essential fatty acid, linoleic acid, is an 18-carbon omega-6 fatty acid commonly found in corn, many vegetable oils, and a wide variety of snacks and fast foods. While omega-6 fatty acids can be beneficial, consuming too much — which many people do — is not good because it promotes inflammation, Elkin pointed out.In addition, linoleic and linolenic acids compete for the same set of enzymes in the liver that convert them into longer-chain derivatives, which have opposing functions in the inflammatory process. As a result, when the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids favors the former, fewer heart-healthy long-chain omega-3 fatty acids are produced by the liver and transported to tissues such as the brain and retina, where they have other important physiological functions.Harvatine said omega-3 needs vary, but, in general, healthy adults should set a target of about 250 milligrams per day of each of the two most important types: eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid — commonly referred to as EPA and DHA, respectively. For people with known heart disease, higher dietary intakes are recommended.EPA and DHA contain a greater number of carbon atoms and unsaturated double bonds, and because their consumption is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease, they are referred to as the heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Foods rich in long-chain omega-3s include fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, mackerel and herring; however, few people eat two to three servings each week per American Heart Association recommendations."Some people don't like fish, can't eat it due to allergies, or simply can't afford it," Harvatine said. "Whatever the reason, most don't meet the requirement. And, if every person on the planet ate the number of fish needed to achieve omega-3 targets, there would be no fish left — it is just not sustainable."While over-the-counter supplements are available, the researchers believe it is better to reach omega-3 nutritional targets through food such as enriched poultry meat and eggs because, as Elkin noted, "it's perhaps a more effective way to reach a greater number of people who are concerned about health risks (methylmercury) associated with consumption of certain fish species, the sustainability and environmental effects of aquaculture, or simply prefer to not eat fish for a variety of reasons."Eggs find their way onto American plates with frequency. According to the American Egg Board, per capita consumption of eggs is about 267 a year, which works out to about five eggs per person per week. In addition, Americans consumed approximately 91 pounds of chicken per person in 2017, according to the National Chicken Council.Unlike typical nutritionally enhanced eggs found in grocery stores, Harvatine's and Elkin's goal is to create poultry products that are richer in long-chain omega-3 fatty acids but lower in omega-6 fatty acids. Although the chicken is able to convert the 18-carbon omega-3 fatty acid found in plants to the heart-healthy long-chain omega-3s, the process is very inefficient. Humans also have a very limited ability to convert linolenic acid to EPA and DHA.In a recent study published in Lipids, Elkin and Harvatine hypothesized that reducing the dietary level of linoleic acid (the 18-carbon omega-6 fatty acid) would promote greater conversion in the liver of linolenic acid to EPA and DHA, while supplementing the hens' diets with a high-oleic acid soybean oil would simultaneously further enrich eggs with oleic acid without influencing egg EPA and DHA contents.Oleic acid is the principal fatty acid found in olive oil, which is the main fat source in the Mediterranean diet, heralded as one of the healthiest diets for cardiovascular disease prevention.The researchers found that, as compared to controls, supplemental dietary flaxseed oil resulted in an enrichment of egg yolks with EPA and DHA, but simultaneously supplementing the hens’ diet with both flaxseed oil and high-oleic soybean oil maximally reduced the yolk deposition of linolenic acid, long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, and total omega-3 fatty acids by 37 per cent, 15 per cent, and 32 per cent respectively.These results suggested that dietary oleic acid was not neutral with regard to the overall process by which dietary linolenic acid was absorbed, metabolized and deposited into egg yolk, either intact or in the form of longer chain/more unsaturated omega-3 fatty acid derivatives.Based on their knowledge of fatty acid metabolism, as well as triglyceride positional analyses of the experimental oils, Elkin and Harvatine hypothesized that oleic acid may simply have out-competed linolenic acid for absorption from the intestine, which ultimately would result in less omega-3 fatty acid enrichment of egg yolks.In addition to being the first study to report this, according to Elkin, the findings also have implications for human nutrition because the initial steps of intestinal fat digestion and absorption are similar in chickens and humans."It is possible that oils rich in oleic acid might hinder the body's ability to reap the full nutritional benefits of EPA and DHA if consumed along with fatty fish or omega-3 fatty acid supplements, such as fish oil capsules.""This also could be occurring in people consuming a Mediterranean diet, in which oleic acid-rich olive oil is the principal source of fat, and moderate to low amounts of fish are eaten," he added.Studies are underway to confirm this finding in laying hens with other oils that are rich in oleic acid, in order to demonstrate that it is an "oleic acid effect" and not an effect that is specific for high-oleic soybean oil only."The importance of this research to the (egg) industry is that we have learned of a potential new hindrance to enriching eggs with omega-3 fatty acids, and that information can be used when trying to develop the next generation of ‘designer’ eggs," Elkin said.Undergraduate student Alexandra Kukorowski, a Schreyer Honors Scholar, contributed to the research.The Pennsylvania Soybean Board and the Pennsylvania Poultry Industry Egg Research Check-Off Program supported this work.
May We Ever Be Finished? Come What May!!!Since I last wrote, we were deeply entrenched in the construction of the Farmer Automatic Enriched Colony Housing for our next flock of pullets that will arrive later this month.All of the kids helped with the housing at some point, but my son John put in the most hours. He has an eye for quality and spots if something was put together incorrectly. This can be anything from a missing perch cap to misaligned waterlines.The feed trough clips, troughing sections, feed chain and feed pans at the ends all had to be assembled in a systematic order.In addition to the various local neighbourhood young people we had working for us, we decided to take the advice of Clark Ag Systems and get a work crew of men from London to accelerate the building process. These fellows are experienced in putting hen housing together and had worked with the lead, Dennis before.Nicole, Charlotte and I worked as a team putting the housing doors together, and then installing them on the top two levels.We made this an enjoyable task by taking turns with who got to be on the scaffold installing them, and the person on the floor fetching doors and pushing the two on the scaffold.   View the embedded image gallery online at: https://www.canadianpoultrymag.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=latest&layout=latest&Itemid=1#sigProGalleria5243f7b419 Our barn has three rows of the enriched colony housing and is four levels high. We have space to put in one more row in the future.Each side of each row must be “levelled” by adjusting the legs under each housing door. Ben worked on getting one side levelled, and Philip has had to do a lot of the rest of the rows.This job is one of the more undesirable things to do. You have to be on your knees a lot and working just under the housing with an impact drill with a torque bit, wrenches and crowbar. A laser level is a great aid in doing this task.The wire sections to cover up the top rows had to be installed and fastened securely with plastic zip ties.More work on the manure ends, manure belts and egg elevators and conveyor was done as well.The manure belts took 40 minutes to pull with the aid someone guiding them through by pulling a rope to the front and then mechanically pulled to the back with a motor.Nick worked on making the opening for the conveyor that bring eggs into the pack room and a window for us to have a good view for monitoring the progression of the eggs when they advance into the packing room.He enjoyed the company of anyone who would assist him (let’s be real, the guy likes having someone fetch things for him---right Charlotte and John!).Preliminary work on the encasement for the scissor lift and was completed, and we expect to have in-floor heating installed this week and concrete floors poured in the ante room and egg packing room.During most of April and May, the electricians have been doing the many electrical tasks to make the barn functional and safe. Our last build was many years ago and the rules, rates and safety measures needed to comply for electricians are many and inflated since that time.I have never watched the weather so closely as I did this past winter and spring. The cold temperatures, snowfall, rain and wind all affect the particular task you are doing in or outside of the barn.As spring seems to have finally arrived, getting on the land adds to the pressure to get the barn completed.As a family, we have always wanted to have an open house to egg-ucate people about the direction that egg farming is going.By 2035, conventional housing has been banned and all egg farmers must have progressed to another form of housing...be it the colony enriched, free run or free range.We look forward to hosting the Open House together with Clark Ag Systems on Friday May 11. If my time permits and interest is expressed, Egg Farmerette might be persuaded to write another blog posting after our hens are settled, laying and happily clucking in their new habitat.CLICK HERE  to read more about Cindy's experience transitioning from a conventional to an enriched layer barn.
Alberta Farm Animal Care (AFAC) is involved in a new initiative called the Livestock Welfare Engagement Project. The goal of this project is a collaborative look at animal welfare in Alberta’s livestock industry, where AFAC will facilitate the collection of input from individuals and organizations across the sector.The insights and information collected through this project will be presented in a final report, which will be shared with the Government of Alberta to support its understanding of the animal welfare landscape in the province from the livestock industry’s perspective. The Livestock Welfare Engagement Project was requested and is being funded by Alberta Agriculture and Forestry.Your voice matters – Everyone encouraged to participate“Livestock welfare is important to all industry stakeholders, as well as the bodies that regulate the sector, and practices continue to change and evolve. This project will provide every stakeholder – from individual farmers and ranchers to producer association groups, veterinarians and all others – the opportunity to share their insight into what is happening in their sector today,” says Annemarie Pedersen, AFAC executive director. “These diverse insights will be critical in creating a clear picture of the extensive work being done related to animal welfare in Alberta today, and in providing direction for the future.”Industry input requiredOne of the most important parts of the project is the project survey. This survey is now online and is open to anyone in Alberta who is involved in animal agriculture in the province. Individuals and organizations of all kinds across the industry are invited and encouraged to participate. The survey is designed to incorporate four categories: 1) organizations, 2) abattoir & auction markets, 3) individuals (e.g. producers), and 4) students.Click here to complete the surveyThe survey is open until October 31st. Participants are encouraged to complete the survey as soon as possible. Any participants falling under more than one category are welcome to complete multiple surveys."Sharing and redistribution of this survey is requested. The more responses gathered, the clearer the final picture of Alberta’s livestock sector will be," says Pedersen. "Industry associations such as producer and commodity organizations are encouraged to circulate this information to their members and stakeholders and we encourage them to participate as well."Key components of the overall project include a preliminary engagement consultation session (completed in March), the online project survey (now underway), focus groups (to follow) and development of the final report. If you have questions on which survey version to complete or on other aspects of the project, please contact AFAC.
In 2014/2015 an outbreak of highly pathogenic Avian Influenza (AI) struck British Columbia. A total of 13 poultry farms were affected and approximately 240,000 birds died or were destroyed to control the outbreak. In addition, the disease was detected in the U.S. where more than 48 million birds were lost and the outbreak was estimated to have cost US$3.3 billion and resulted in shortages and price increases for certain poultry products.Wild waterfowl are known to be the reservoir for AI, and although wild bird AI surveillance programs were already in place in Canada and the U.S., it was limited to collecting and testing individual wild birds. To improve the surveillance to include environmental monitoring, in 2015 the BC Ministry of Agriculture, BC Centre for Disease Control Public Health Laboratory, and University of British Columbia joined forces to develop a new approach - a genomics-based test that identifies and characterizes AI viruses (AIV) in wetland sediments.This work, funded in part by Genome British Columbia (Genome BC) and led by Drs. Chelsea Himsworth, Jane Pritchard, William Hsiao, Natalie Prystajecky, and Agatha Jassem, successfully demonstrated that this novel approach worked, as AIV was detected in a significant proportion of sediment samples, compared to less than one percent rate of detection in the current Canadian national wild bird AI surveillance program. Additionally, the outbreak virus was found in wetlands throughout the Fraser Valley, information that could have been used to mitigate the outbreak had this technology been available.To further evaluate this novel surveillance approach, a new project, Genomic Analysis of Wetland Sediment as a Tool for Avian Influenza Surveillance and Prevention, represents a combined investment of over $2.5 million from funders and delivery partners including Genome BC, the BC Ministry of Agriculture, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Investment Agriculture Foundation of BC, and the Sustainable Poultry Farming Group. This phase follows on from previous work and is looking at what steps are required to move the technology from a successful proof-of-concept initiative to implementation. This includes scientific validation of technology, as well as its incorporation into Provincial and National Wild Waterfowl AI Surveillance Programs. It is anticipated that this innovative approach will be adopted nationally and internationally for surveillance of AI and/or other diseases associated with wildlife."This investment allows Dr. Himsworth and the team to refine and validate the AI sediment surveillance with genomics technologies, methodology and field approach," says Dr. Catalina Lopez-Correa, chief scientific officer and vice president, sectors, at Genome BC. "Most importantly it allows for the identification of the optimal combination of AI surveillance techniques for maximum efficiency and efficacy."
Auburn University's College of Agriculture, in conjunction with other schools around the nation, will conduct a study to ensure that poultry litter does not pollute surface waters with excessive amounts of phosphorous.The three-year study is being performed to combat the 1.8 million tons of waste produced annually in Alabama from its $15 billion poultry industry.Phosphorous-rich poultry litter is a big concern in Alabama and other states where the litter is used to fertilize fields. If the nutrient leaks into waterways, it can cause toxic algae blooms which can lead to deficient oxygen levels and destruction of life in the water.The study will look at the Sand Mountain region of North Alabama and a row-crop field in Wisconsin, two large agro-ecosystems that are currently having issues with managing their phosphorous levels. | For the full story, CLICK HERE.
A University of Guelph professor of poultry immunology is preparing to launch a new initiative devoted to reducing antimicrobial use in poultry through gut health.
USPOULTRY and the USPOULTRY Foundation announce the completion of a funded research project at the University of Georgia in Athens, Ga., in which a researcher showed how infectious laryngotracheitis (ILT) can spread from vaccinated flocks.Dr. Maricarmen Garcia, at the University of Georgia, recently completed a research project that studied how well a recombinant ILT vaccine protected broilers when various doses of the vaccine were used.She found that all dosage levels used protected against the clinical signs of the disease, but none of the dosage levels prevented the broilers from shedding the ILT challenge virus to other broilers. This study reinforces the observation that biosecurity is very important to control spread of ILT from vaccinated flocks.The research summary can be found on the USPOULTRY website, www.uspoultry.org.
The results of a study recently published in the prestigious international journal Science Advances have enabled researchers to better understand the role of eggshells in embryo development and hatching.The objective of the study, conducted by an international research team led by Marc McKee from McGill University in Canada and involving the participation of scientists from the University of Granada (UGR), was to analyse the nanostructure of chicken eggshells.The findings could be used to produce healthier, more robust eggs by providing researchers with the means to genetically select laying hens with specific characteristics.An eggshell is made up of both organic and inorganic matter that contains calcium carbonate. One of the important findings of the study was that the nanostructure was closely linked to the presence of osteopontin, a protein which is also found in bones.Eggshell transformation processEggshells are strong enough to resist fractures during the incubation period. However, they gradually weaken as the hatching period approaches to make it easier for the chicks to break through the shell.The eggshell weakens as its internal layer dissolves, releasing calcium which, in turn, is needed by the embryo for bone formation.The study found that this process is made possible as a result of the changes that occur in the eggshell nanostructure during the incubation period.Implications for food safetyFurthermore, the researchers were able to recreate similar nanostructures to those they discovered in the eggshells by using proteins, specifically by adding osteopontin to mineral crystals grown in the lab.The team add that: “A better understanding of the role of proteins in the calcification process that strengthens the eggshell structure could have significant implications for food safety.”According to the team, which includes Alejandro B. Rodríguez Navarro from the Department of Mineralogy and Petrology (UGR), approximately 10 per cent of all eggs break or crack before consumption, which increases the risk of food poisoning and infections such as Salmonella.Understanding how the different mineral nanostructures contribute to strengthening the eggshell could allow scientists to genetically select laying hens based on specific traits, which would put healthier, more resistant eggs into circulation.However, studying the internal structure of eggshells can be challenging because of the ease with which they break when under analysis. To overcome this obstacle, the team used a focused ion beam sectioning system that allowed them to accurately cut the samples out of the eggshells and study them using electron microscopy.The full pager is avaliable here: https://canal.ugr.es/noticia/study-healthier-robust-eggs/
As it did for most livestock species, substantial genetic improvement in turkeys started in the 21st century. In the 1960s, hybridization of turkey varieties began, followed by the development of pedigree programs for large white turkeys in the 1970s.
Currently, more than 90 per cent of broiler chicken feeds contain enzyme supplements, which have a direct positive effect on animal performance. However, new generation enzyme supplements have been developed for specific use in the feed industry.Yeast products are rich sources of mannan polysaccharides, ß1,3- and ß1,6-glucans and nucleotides, which can function as prebiotics and have been shown to stimulate the immune system and gastrointestinal tract development. This provides favorable conditions for beneficial intestinal bacteria and results in decreased attachment of pathogens such as Salmonella.Dr. Bogdan Slominski from the Department of Animal Sciences at the University of Manitoba aimed to develop a product that would contain a combination of a multi-carbohydrase preparation fortified with a yeast cell wall lytic activity with the yeast-derived product(s) as an effective and inexpensive alternative to antibiotic growth promoters.The experimentsSlominski and his research team conducted a series of experiments to first optimize the depolymerisation of yeast cell wall polysaccharides using varying enzyme activities to explore the potential for the release of bioactive components from various yeast products.They demonstrated that the use of a specific yeast cell lytic enzyme could significantly depolymerize yeast cell wall polysaccharides so they become water-soluble and, thus, more bioactive. Additionally, yeast cell lysis resulted in the release of a variety of nutrients, including nucleotides, known to play a role in immune system development.In addition to investigating the effects of enzyme/yeast-based prebiotic supplements on growth performance of broiler chickens and turkeys under commercial field conditions, the researchers also produced different enzyme-pretreated yeast products as dietary enzyme/yeast-based prebiotic supplements. They performed feeding trials with Salmonella and Clostridium perfringens challenged poultry as well.The findingsThe enzyme/yeast-based prebiotic supplements the team developed significantly decreased the incidence of Salmonella shedding and reduced Salmonella cecal counts in broiler chickens and laying hens. In the laying hen, the enzyme/yeast-based prebiotic supplements also reduced Salmonella colonization/numbers in different internal organs.The Clostridium perfringens challenge study with broiler chickens demonstrated that enzyme/yeast-based prebiotic supplements were as effective as antibiotics in birds post challenge recovery. Other findings of the feeding trials show that enzyme/yeast-based prebiotic supplements fed to broiler chickens suggests a shift in microbial population of the lower gut towards beneficial microbes and a more diversified microbial community, resulting in less susceptibility to pathogenic invasion.In the broiler chicken study performed under field conditions, researchers observed improvements in body weight gain and feed conversion ratio for diets containing the enzyme/yeast-based prebiotic supplements. In addition, the team observed a significant effect of the enzyme/yeast-based prebiotic supplements on body weight gain and feed conversion ratio in turkeys. Dr. Slominski and his associates have clearly demonstrated the benefits of enzyme/yeast-based prebiotics supplements, which may serve as alternatives to antibiotic growth promoters.The next stepsThe researchers plan to develop yeast products with further enhanced biological activity. Additionally, they aim to investigate the configuration of yeast products required for the bioactive components to exert their activity in protecting the gut from pathogens.This research is funded by CPRC/AAFC under the Poultry Science Cluster Program. This is in addition to funding from Canola Council of Canada and Canadian Bio-Systems.CPRC, its board of directors and member organizations are committed to supporting and enhancing Canada’s poultry sector through research and related activities. For more details on these or any other CPRC activities, please contact The Canadian Poultry Research Council, 350 Sparks Street, Suite 1007, Ottawa, Ontario, K1R 7S8, phone: (613) 566-5916, fax: (613) 241-5999, email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or visit us at www.cp-rc.ca.CPRC membership consists of Chicken Farmers of Canada, Canadian Hatching Egg Producers, Turkey Farmers of Canada, Egg Farmers of Canada and the Canadian Poultry and Egg Processors’ Council. 
Although research into the effects of LED lighting for poultry is ongoing, data often appears inconsistent. In addition, experts have focused less on behavioural and welfare aspects as compared to production.
Five genes that affect sociality-related behaviour in chickens have been identified by researchers at Linköping University in Sweden.Several of the genes have been previously linked to nervous system function or behaviour. The new study, which is published in Genetics, is the first that assigns these genes a role in sociality.Sociality and social behaviour covers a wide range of behaviours. Dogs seeking human contact and honeybees using complex waggle dances to exchange information on where to find good food sources are two examples from the animal world. But what actually governs social behaviour?“By identifying the genes responsible for the variation in such sociality we can understand how sociality is formed and how social behaviour is controlled at a genetic level. Why some people or animals are more gregarious by nature and others more independent is just one such example,” says Dominic Wright, senior lecturer at the Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology (IFM), who has led the study.To assess this, the researchers used a cross between wild and domestic chickens. The AVIAN research group at Linköping University is one of the few groups in the world with a breeding population of Red Junglefowl, the wild ancestor of the domestic fowl.For 8,000 years, humans have selected the individuals that have desirable traits and bred them, a process known as domestication. As a result, today’s domestic fowl and the original wild fowl differ strongly in their social behaviour. For example, Red Junglefowl typically take longer to approach other birds, but spend more time with them when they do.By crossing the domestic and the wild fowl for several generations, the researchers obtained chickens that exhibited a large range of social behaviour.The researchers measured sociality by placing chickens in a novel environment (a large box) and observing how likely they were to seek contact with other chickens. A more social chicken approaches the others more rapidly and spends less time exploring the new surroundings. The same behaviour is also displayed by more anxious chickens.The investigators also measured gene expression in one of several regions in the brain involved in the regulation of social behaviour, the hypothalamus. By correlating behaviour, gene expression and genetic variants, the researchers identified five genes that seem to control aspects of this behaviour.“Although these genes had been implicated with behaviour or nervous system function previously, this is the first time they have been shown to control sociality also. We also found that several of the genes affect both sociality and anxiety in the chickens,” says Dominic Wright.The research was supported by grants from the Carl Trygger Stiftelse, the Swedish Research Council, the Swedish Research Council for Environment, Agricultural Sciences and Spatial Planning (FORMAS) and the European Research Council.
Chickens perform best when the barn has a certain temperature range. When temperatures get higher, the birds can experience heat stress, thus leading to fewer eggs or compromised growth. Luckily, there are some nutritional strategies a farmer can implement.The damaging effects of heat stress on broilers and laying hens are reduced growth rates, decreased egg production and poor meat and egg quality. The burden exerted on the profitability of poultry farming will grow worldwide in the future as genetic selection for fast growth increases sensitivity to heat stress.In addition, poultry markets of warm regions are forecasted to grow in the following decades. Strategies to alleviate the detrimental effects of heat stress on the productivity of poultry are, therefore, sound and should be based on several complementary approaches. Such approaches include housing conditions, management practices and nutritional strategies. This review focuses on the latter. | For the full story, CLICK HERE.
USPOULTRY and the USPOULTRY Foundation announce the completion of a funded research project at the University of Delaware in Newark, Del., in which researchers found that European infectious bronchitis vaccine does not protect against U.S. strains.The research is part of the Association’s comprehensive research program encompassing all phases of poultry and egg production and processing.Dr. Jack Gelb and colleagues recently completed a research project in which they examined the use of multiple strains of infectious bronchitis vaccines to induce protection against new infectious bronchitis variants.They found that combinations of existing vaccines did not provide protection to the new strains. Inclusion of the European 4/91 vaccine also failed to provide significant protection against current variant strains of infectious bronchitis.A complete report may be obtained by going to USPOULTRY’s website, www.uspoultry.org.
Jamesway Incubation Company Inc., incubation and hatchery equipment manufacturer, announced that Denis Kan, CPA, CMA, will assume the role of president replacing former president Christopher Omiecinski. In his former positions as Jamesway C.O.O. and director of finance, Kan has led the company through many new processes and has used his formidable organizational skills to propel the company to new achievements. As president, Kan can be expected to continue this forward surge as Jamesway continues to acquire market share in the hatchery sector.Denis brings a strong set of technical and analytical skills in financial management, reporting, and organization and planning coupled with key knowledge in operational monitoring, analysis and control and strong business acumen in strategic analysis and planning and tactical business and process alignment. He has experience directly in field sales and national accounts as well as a history of partnering with sales to work with strategic customers. Jamesway welcomes the senior management change and looks forward to continued growth with Kan at the helm.
Canada's system of supply management has been the target of heated political debate for the better part of half a century — but very few Canadians outside of the affected farm sectors actually understand how it works, or who foots the bill for stabilizing farmers' incomes.Supply management is a system that allows specific commodity sectors — dairy, poultry and eggs — to limit the supply of their products to what Canadians are expected to consume in order to ensure predictable, stable prices.While the federal government has played a role in supporting agricultural pricing policies for more than a century, the current system of supply management traces its origins to the 1960s — a period of overproduction due to technological advances that resulted in low prices for farmers. | READ MORE
Olymel L.P. executives announced the acquisition of all the shares of Pinty's Delicious Foods Inc., an Ontario poultry slaughtering and processing company that specializes in fully cooked products and other related products. Headquartered in Burlington, Ontario, Pinty's employs 360 people. The company operates three processing plants, respectively located in Port Colborne, Paris, and Oakville, Ontario. Pinty's markets its products throughout Canada and the United States under the brands Pinty's Food Service, Pinty's Pub & Grill, Pinty's Eat Well, Pinty's Perfect Portions and Pinty's Delicious Food Inc."Olymel is confident that this transaction will benefit our development and growth. We are proud to welcome the employees of Pinty's Delicious Foods Inc. Over the past 70 years, Pinty's has developed great expertise on the Canadian and American markets by offering innovative and exclusive products under brand names that have become extremely popular with many consumers and customers. We know that this family business has been served by passionate owners throughout its history. We are also pleased to invest and strengthen our presence in Ontario and on the Canadian market," said Réjean Nadeau, Olymel's president and CEO.Current employees of Pinty's Delicious Foods Inc. will continue to work within the company. The closing of this transaction is subject to the approval of the Competition Bureau. Meanwhile, both companies will continue their activities separately and independently."The owners and management of Pinty's Delicious Foods are happy to have found a Canadian buyer. We are confident that Olymel will grow our company and ensure it a promising future. I truly believe that our employees will benefit from the advantages of working for a large group like Olymel, a company that has a unique expertise in the processing and marketing of poultry products. We are proud of the company and the business network that we have built around Pinty's brands for decades and I am certain that this transaction will also benefit our customers and consumers," said Jack Vanderlaan, executive chairman of Pinty's.This acquisition is part of Olymel's action to consolidate its position in Canada as the leader of the pork and poultry slaughtering and processing sector. Specifically, in the poultry sector, Olymel owns seven poultry slaughtering and processing establishments in Quebec, Ontario and New Brunswick serving the entirety of the Canadian market under the brands Olymel, Flamingo and Galco, in addition to placing its production capacity at the service of private brands. Pinty's will pursue its activities, continue to serve its current customers and honour its supply agreements according to the prevailing poultry market conventions in Ontario.
Proposed service fee increases for veterinary drugs will create serious and unintended consequences, says a new report from Agri-Food Economic Systems.The report, commissioned by the Canadian Animal Health Institute, finds that proposed service fees for the review and maintenance of veterinary drugs are to increase up to 500 per cent, effective April 1st, 2019. Access to veterinary drugs would become more challenging as a result of these excessively high fees. This in turn will result in fewer veterinary drugs available in Canada leaving our food animal industries in a less competitive position, and leaving pet owners and horse enthusiasts with an increasingly difficult challenge to maintain their animals’ health and welfare.Health Canada suggests that the proposed fees make Canada consistent with those applied in the United States (US), the European Union (EU) and Australia, “But Canada has a much smaller livestock population than the US, EU, or even Australia, and as such the animal health marketfrom which to recover these service fees is much smaller”, says Douglas Hedley, Agri-Food Economic Systems Associate and co-author of the report. “These service fees proposed for Canada will exceed those in competing regions, on a unit basis, by a considerable margin."The report finds that the high fees being proposed for Canada would result in fewer veterinary drugs being registered in Canada. It says that some companies will cease to market drugs for minor species and for niche products in this country. Options such as not treating and culling ananimal, finding alternative therapies to licensed medicines, increased use of compounded drugs and other unapproved products will be used in the absence of licensed veterinary drugs. In other cases, firms may attempt to pass through increased costs in pricing, and many will find animal health products unaffordable. Reduced access to veterinary drugs could harm the health status of food animals due to the substitution of unregistered product as a means of keeping animals healthy. This in turn threatens the phytosanitary standards of Canadian food animal exports.“The proposed fees will have unintended consequences that will hurt the safety of our food supply, our trade with foreign countries and reduce pet owner access to health management tools for their pets”, says report co-author Al Mussell, Agri-Food Economic Systems research lead.“This is an administrative decision made without the full understanding of the ramifications for Canada’s economic competitiveness and welfare of its animals; it also sets an alarming precedent for regulatory service fees that could apply elsewhere in the agri-food chain”.The report can be accessed at www.agrifoodecon.ca. Agri-Food Economic Systems is an independent economic research organization dedicated to agri-food located in Guelph, Ontario.
Several years ago, the people at Egg Farmers of Canada (EFC) noticed a trend. In an increasingly urbanized society, fewer people had a direct connection to where their food came from. Despite this shift, the organization’s CEO Tim Lambert noticed younger Canadians were more interested in where their food came from. They appeared particularly concerned about the environmental impact of production.
With farms, woods, wildlife and fresh air, rural residents cherish the charm and beauty of the countryside. Many people move from cities seeking peace and a pristine environment in the country.Most people understand that a rural community includes farmers and that farming is a business. Ontario’s agriculture and food sector employs 760,000 people and contributes more than $35 billion to the province’s economy every year. This means that certain activities take place according to a production schedule; and some affect residents living close to farms. In almost all cases, farmers and their rural neighbours get along well together. However, there are some exceptions.For the year of 2015- 2016 the ministry received 107 complaints related to farm practices. Of these, 45 (40 per cent) were about odour, while the others were mainly about noise (26 per cent), flies (19 per cent) and municipal by-laws (nine per cent).Odour complaints are generally related to: Farmers spreading manure on fields Fans ventilating livestock barns Manure piles Mushroom farms To manage conflict about farm practices, the Ontario government enacted the Farming and Food Production Protection Act (FFPPA). This act establishes the Normal Farm Practices Protection Board (NFPPB) to determine “normal farm practices”. When a person complains about odour or other nuisance from a particular farming practice, the board has the authority to hear the case and decide whether the practice is a “normal farm practice”. If it is, the farmer is protected from any legal action regarding that practice.When people make complaints about farm practices, a regional agricultural engineer or environmental specialist from OMAFRA’s Environmental Management Branch works with all parties involved to resolve the conflict. The board requires that any complaint go through this conflict resolution process before it comes to a hearing.Each year, through the conflict resolution process, OMAFRA staff have resolved the vast majority of complaints. In 2015-16, only twelve of the 107 cases resulted in hearings before the board. Of these, only two were odour cases involving multiple nuisances such as noise, dust and flies. Thus, while odours remain the biggest cause of complaints about farm practices, OMAFRA staff working through the conflict resolution process has proved very effective in dealing with them.
I first heard the word ‘sustainable’ in university many moons ago. It seemed academic, and the right thing to do as we studied agriculture and how to feed the world in the future. Then I didn’t hear that word for about a decade.
As if tax planning weren’t painful enough for poultry producers… Over the past year, the federal government has made things even more confusing – and drawn the ire of farmers in the process. Last summer, the feds unveiled controversial small business tax reforms.
Chicken Farmers of Canada is proud to announce the election of the 2018 executive committee. The elections followed the annual general meeting and the 15-member board of directors, made up of farmers and other stakeholders from the chicken industry, has chosen the following representatives:Benoît Fontaine, Chair (Stanbridge Station, Quebec)Hailing from Stanbridge Station, Quebec, Benoît Fontaine, chair of Chicken Farmers of Canada, most recently served as the first vice-chair of the executive committee. He first joined the board of directors in 2013 as an alternate, and became the Quebec director in 2014. He farms in the Lac Champlain area and raises 5.5 million kg of chicken and 500,000 kg of turkey. A former high school Canadian history teacher, and second generation chicken farmer, Benoît has also been heavily involved in the Union des producteurs agricoles since 1999. Benoît has also served on Chicken Farmers of Canada’s policy committee and the production committee.Derek Janzen, first Vice-Chair (Aldergrove, British Columbia)Derek Janzen, first vice-chair, and his wife Rhonda have farmed in the Fraser Valley since 1998. They currently produce 1.4 million Kg’s of chicken annually and manage 22,000 commercial laying hens. Prior to farming, Derek worked for B.C.’s largest poultry processor for nearly nine years. He worked his way up from driving delivery truck to sales and marketing where he took the position of Major Accounts Manager. Derek’s experience in the processing industry has served him well with his board involvement. Derek has held various positions on a variety of boards including chair of the B.C. Egg Producers Association and also was appointed by the Minister of Agriculture as a member of the Farm Industry Review Board, B.C.’s supervisory board. Derek enjoys being involved in the industry and is excited to represent B.C. at the Chicken Farmers of Canada.Nick de Graaf, 2nd Vice-Chair (Port Williams, Nova Scotia)Nick de Graaf is a third-generation poultry farmer in the Annapolis Valley of Nova Scotia operating the farm founded by his Dutch grandfather in the early 1960’s. Today the farm produces more than 660,000 chickens, and 67,000 turkeys per year. Nick is also part of Innovative Poultry Group (IPG). IPG farms 55,000 broiler breeders and owns Maritime Chicks, a new, state-of-the-art hatchery employing the HatchCare system. In addition to poultry, Nick grows more than 1,600 acres of wheat, corn and soybeans. He is self-sufficient in the production of corn and soybeans for his on-farm feed mill where he processes poultry feeds for his own flocks. Nick is in his 8th year as a director with Chicken Farmers of Nova Scotia. He has participated in Chicken Farmers of Canada as an alternate director and as a member of the policy committee. Nick and his wife, Trudy, have three children and two grandchildren.Tim Klompmaker, Executive Member (Norwood, Ontario)Tim Klompmaker lives in Norwood, Ontario and was elected to the Chicken Farmers of Canada Board in 2017. Tim started farming in 1984 along with his wife Annette and his three sons. He is a third generation chicken farmer with the fourth generation already in place and running chicken farms of their own. Tim served as a district committee representative for Chicken Farmers of Ontario before being elected to the Ontario Board in 2000. He served as CFC alternate representative for Ontario from 2012 to 2013, and has represented Ontario on the CFC Production Committee, the AMU Working Committee, and at NFACC. He has also served as first vice-chair of Chicken Farmers of Ontario.The Board looks forward to continuing its work together, ensuring that Canada’s chicken industry continues to deliver on consumer expectations for excellence. With an eye to the future, Chicken Farmers of Canada will work with all its partners, ensuring clear, common goals for the future, and setting a solid path and purpose for all stakeholders, and for generations of chicken farmers to come.Canadians want Canadian chicken, so we deliver them fresh, locally-raised food, just the way they like it. Our farmers are a stabilizing force in rural Canada, where they can – and do – reinvest with confidence in their communities, but their contribution is much wider. In sum, we are part of Canada’s economic solution, and do so without subsidies, and are very proud of both.Chicken Farmers of Canada introduced its “Raised by a Canadian Farmer” brand in 2013 to showcase the commitment of farmers to provide families with nutritious chicken raised to the highest standards of care, quality and freshness.People care deeply about their food, about knowing where it comes from and that what they’re serving to their family and friends is of the highest quality; our farmers and their families are no different. So, when we say that the Canadian chicken industry is good for Canadians, it’s because we know that we’re raising our chickens to the highest standards: yours.
It wasn’t exactly the kind of product launch that consumers – and, for that matter, retailers – were expecting. Almost two years after receiving government approval to supply Ontario-sourced kosher chickens, Premier Kosher introduced its free-range birds in 50-pound boxes that were shipped directly to customers, bypassing retailers entirely – at least for now.The move came only a few weeks after Premier Kosher received final government approval for its production plant in Abingdon, Ont., and only a few weeks before the Passover season, the busiest time of year for kosher food retailers. | For the full story, CLICK HERE.
The idea of using a biological system to produce products for human use is not new. Since civilization began, humans have harnessed bacteria, yeast and more to produce alcoholic drinks, fermented foods and, later on, things like silk and insulin.
As part of Cargill Protein’s efforts to address growing interest from customers and consumers for continuous improvement in humane handling of food animals, Cargill Protein is investing $22 million (CDN) to install a state-of-the-art Controlled Atmospheric Stunning (CAS) system at its London, Ont., chicken processing facility. The system replaces electric stunning and will be operational this spring.“As we grow our business to meet consumer and customer demand for wholesome, nutritious, affordable animal protein, we continuously explore enhancements that position us as an industry leader in both animal welfare and protein production,” said Claudecir Pagnussatto, plant general manager at London. “Our new CAS system will help reduce handling stress with chickens, resulting in a higher-quality, more consistent product.”While both electric and CAS stunning systems are approved, proven and acceptable for humane poultry harvesting, a growing number of consumers and customers are expressing a desire for CAS systems at poultry facilities. Cargill was a pioneer in the use of CAS at a U.S. turkey processing facility more than a decade ago.“Cargill is committed to ensuring the highest standards of animal welfare are maintained and believes all food animals deserve respect and dignity prior to harvesting. We have led the way in many areas of animal welfare,” said Dr. Stephanie Cottee, Cargill’s global head of poultry welfare. “We were the first to install third-party remote video auditing at our harvest plants to ensure our animal welfare program is properly implemented.“For the past two years, we have been named to the second highest international company ranking tier by the U.K.-based Business Benchmark for Farm Animal Welfare. We are dedicated to animal welfare because it’s the right thing to do.”This investment also underscores Cargill’s commitment to its traditional protein business, with nearly $900 million of investments in North America over the past two years to ensure continued growth. Cargill’s London, Ont., chicken processing facility serves customers throughout Canada and produces a variety of products to meet customer specifications. It was opened in 1987 and employs more than 830 people.

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