Barn Spotlight: Nest Egg Poultry
Free-run barn includes a number of firsts.
By Brett Ruffell
Location: Abbotsford, B.C.
Nest Egg Poultry is a third-generation egg farm. Andrew Penner bought the business from his father about a year and a half ago. He now runs the day-to-day operations along with one employee who helps collect eggs. The producer has quota for just over 20,000 hens.
Penner grew up two doors down from the farm and worked there off and on for years. That’s why when he bought the business he already knew it needed upgrading. Adding to that need to expand was a six per cent quota increase. “I realized we were completely maxed out in the existing facilities,” Penner says.
Working with AgPro West Supply, Penner replaced the aging conventional barn with a new aviary facility large enough to house 40,000 hens – plenty of room for future growth. The barn is the first in North America to include Big Dutchman’s NATURA Step XL system. It’s similar to the NATURA Step only longer and wider, with larger nest boxes that are surrounded by dual egg belts on each side. The facility includes two barns under one roof with two rows of equipment on each side. Penner says the free-run barn allows him to keep a closer eye on his flock. “In an aviary barn, you’re really watching what they’re doing, how they’re interacting and how comfortable they are,” Penner says.
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