By Monica Dick
Argyle Farms was started in 1851 and is now farmed by the sixth generation of the McKillops
Argyle Farms was started in 1851 and is now farmed by the sixth generation of the McKillops – couples Alan and Nancy and Ian and Andi. The poultry side of the operation includes two pullet barns, one conventional that supplies the farm and one aviary that supplies pullets to nearby aviary egg farmers.
One of their two conventional layer barns did not meet layer code of practice density requirements, and the McKillops needed to build a new third barn this year to accommodate the same quota. They chose enriched housing from Tecno Equipment.
The producers prioritized their hens’ comfort in planning the new build. For hotter days, they installed tunnel ventilation and an evaporative cooling cell. They also prioritized energy efficiency. Two years ago, the McKillops completed an 85-kW solar array project on the roof of one of the pullet barns. Under a provincial program, electricity they generate flows into the grid and they are only charged a net amount based on what they use. So far, their electricity costs have been minimal. With the new barn, electricity consumption will increase but it will be held in check by LED tube/ceiling lights and three-phase fan motors with phase inverters. Natural gas box heaters warm the barn in the winter.
- Location: Dutton, Ont.
- Sector: Layers