Location: Mitchell, Ont.
Sector: Turkey processing
Sofina Foods installed a Maxitech gas stunning system at its new turkey plant in late-2017.
Once producers make a final decision between whether they want to build cage-free or enriched housing for their flock, what next? Every farm is unique and every barn is custom designed, so decisions of all kinds still lie ahead.
Across the country, egg producers looking to comply with the phase-out of conventional layer housing are facing a big decision of whether to invest in aviary or enriched housing. For many producers, the choice is challenging: not only do both systems provide management benefits and drawbacks, the single most critical factor – future consumer demand – remains a huge wildcard.
A significant issue for the poultry industry is the disposal of bird carcasses and manure when they are contaminated with avian influenza virus.
According to the "Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Response Plan" developed by the USDA, there is a clear need for better disposal technology.
One intriguing way forward is to heat the carcasses and manure in a mobile trailer to quickly react to outbreaks before they can spread. The trailer would hold multiple gasifiers, which would be used to heat up the trailer. From there, a conveyor system would take the carcasses and manure through the trailer until the virus is destroyed. The gasifiers use a solid fuel like seed corn or wood chips to provide the energy at very low cost and produce an in-situ charcoal bed that breaks down organic pollutants.
The University of Iowa has more than four years of experience in operating an industrial scale gasifier based on these principles and uses it in conjunction with lab testing and computer modeling to understand and predict general gasification behavior. The focus of this research project was to study the issues involved in trailer gasification and avian influenza virus elimination.
Project #BRU008: Analysis of Poultry Gasification Parameters for Elimination of Avian Flu Exposed Birds and Manure, was conducted by Dr. Albert Ratner, University of Iowa.
The project was recently completed by Ratner and colleagues in the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at the University. They developed the design for a mobile system to heat poultry carcasses and manure to inactivate avian influenza virus. This system could be utilized during an avian influenza outbreak to quickly help eliminate the virus from infected farms and better contain the spread of an outbreak.
For more information, visit: http://www.uspoultry.org/
To veiw the full research report, CLICK HERE
Maple Leaf will convert its transportation, lairage and receiving area and handling systems to optimize rest-time and create a climate-controlled environment as it implements this technology.
The new lairage system will enhance lighting, air quality and temperature control, allowing chickens to rest comfortably and significantly reducing stress.
The CAS technology selected is a very humane system that will ensure birds are fully insensible prior to processing. The conversion will result in a 26,000-square foot expansion at the Edmonton facility, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2019.
"We are on a journey to become the most sustainable protein company on earth and being a leader in animal care is a cornerstone of this vision," said Michael McCain, president and CEO, Maple Leaf Foods. "We are deploying world-class technologies and best practices that support our goal to eliminate stress and pain and provide humane treatment of animals in our care, while enhancing employee health and safety and food quality. With Canada's leading poultry brands, we are advancing many dimensions of sustainability, from eliminating antibiotics, to best practices in animal care and dramatic reductions in our environmental footprint."
"CAS provides many advantages to animal welfare, ensuring chickens are fully unconscious and humanely euthanized, while greatly reducing stress," according to Dr. Greg Douglas, vice-president, animal care. "This technology, which we have also installed at our pork processing facility in Manitoba, is acknowledged as a best practice around the world," Douglas added.
Maple Leaf Foods is also installing Remote Video Auditing at this facility, a powerful training and auditing tool that supports rigorous monitoring and compliance to best practices of animal care.
This will be the ninth implementation as part of Maple Leaf's commitment to incorporate Remote Video Auditing across its network.
Poultry is the most consumed protein in Canada and Maple Leaf Foods has the leading national brands and market position in value-added poultry, which continues to experience significant growth.
To support its leadership, Maple Leaf has added a second shift at this facility to keep pace with demand and recently invested approximately $16 million to expand capacity at its hatchery operations in Wetaskiwin, Alberta.
Maple Leaf has additionally reached an agreement to acquire two poultry processing facilities and related supply, with significant value-added capabilities, from Cericola Farms.
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.
Many of the 125 farm dealerships in the province have at least a couple openings for agricultural equipment technicians.
"Where dealers use to get people walking in the door looking for jobs, now they are having to go search for them," says Larry Hertz, vice-president, Canada for the Western Equipment Dealers Association.
The association anticipates additional openings in the future as current employees begin to retire. | For the full story, CLICK HERE
In June and July alone, Ritchie Bros. will conduct more than 65 agricultural auctions, including on-the-farm retirement dispersals; site sales in Saskatoon, Regina, North Battleford and Lethbridge, Alta., as well as a special, pre-harvest IronPlanet online auction on June 27. Equipment highlights include 750+ agricultural tractors, 225+ combines, 200+ cultivators, 200+ headers, 125+ swathers, 80+ discs, 70+ harrows, and more.
"We have items for all types and sizes of farms, available to purchase when, where and how you want—whether onsite or online," said Jordan Clarke, sales director, Ritchie Bros. "We are so excited to add a special IronPlanet online ag event to the calendar this year, on June 27. Plus, this summer we have decided to make our Saskatoon site auction one big summer event in mid-July, instead of two separate auctions in June and August. I encourage interested bidders to come out to, or participate online in, one of our many ag auctions this Summer."
- June 19 at Carlyle, Sask.
- June 25 at North Battleford, Sask.
- June 26 at Kenaston, Sask.
- June 27 IronPlanet pre-harvest event
- July 11 at Regina, Sask.
- July 18 at Saskatoon, Sask.
- July 20 at Lethbridge, Alta.
- July 24 at Brandon, Man.
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 guidelines
Farmer 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.
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.
For more information, visit: www.polsltd.ca
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
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) 527-2525
Video produced at the 2018 National Poutlry Show by Canadian Poultry magazine.
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.
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.
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.
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