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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
Published in Companies
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.
Published in Podcasts
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) 527-2525

Video produced at the 2018 National Poutlry Show by Canadian Poultry magazine.
Published in Companies
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. 
Published in Companies
Two Italian photographers recently published a photographic project about chickens, a collectable coffee table book that showcases more than 100 diverse breeds.


"We felt like the chickens had been waiting for their moment in the spotlight,” said Moreno Monti. Monti and Matteo Tranchellini are a proffesional photography team and have worked together in Milano for the past twenty plus years, collaborating on countless advertising campaigns.

In 2013 the pair decided to search for a Concincina hen as a pet for their studio garden. After attending an aviary exhibition, they became fascinated by the beauty of birds. A photography project was born and soon lead to a photo collection of more than 200 pictures of 100 diverse breeds of chickens.

The CHICken series was photographed in Italy at the Milano aviary exhibition. Many of the breeders were worried that the birds were not posed according to the breed standard. However, the photographers wanted to capture the birds in their natural state of being. For more information, visit: chic-ken.it/. Follow the project on Instagram: @chicken_ph
Published in Companies
At end of February, we had just surpassed what proved to be a big stumbling block and holdup for us...the big pour of the concrete floor.

After letting the concrete floor cure for almost a week, the pads were poured.

We decided to put cement pads under each row of hen housing and these were one-and-a-half inches in depth on the edges and two inches in the middle. This is to make it easier when the barn is cleaned each year so that the water runs away from under the housing. Also, floor drains were put in place on the far end of the barn.

A few days of curing occurred for the pads, and we were eager to get the construction of the Farmer Automatic Enriched Housing started.



We had a couple different work stations—constructing frames, assembling plastic housing doors, and all of the webbing inside the frames was put together.

We have lead man, Dennis and another employee, Josh from Clark Ag Systems.

Nick has been the general contractor for the building of the barn and has good knowledge of the conventional housing that is in our present barn. He has been an asset with his experience. We also have the rest of the family to help when available and some other workers.

The construction of the housing is a huge job and there are many layers to the process. Frames are constructed and assembled with vertical braces that end up being the skeleton of the row. The dividers between each colony are put place and the floor clips and perch holders.

The wires for the cage doors, middle divider, and thicker cage floor support wire are fitted out next. Our nephew Jason was wired for these tasks. We decided to use stainless steel wire instead of the galvanized that was supplied, as Nick found that this was a weak area in our present conventional housing.

The cage floors, white PVC perches, white PVC waterlines, water cups, re-plastic scratch pads, and nesting boxes with curtains are installed a systematic order. I nicknamed our daughter Stephanie, “Scratch Pad Steffy” as she efficiently put in all the red plastic scratch pads in the first and second levels of rows one and two.

Farmerette can proudly say that she put all the perches in for the first and second levels, with some help from daughter Stephanie and Jake, and glued the joints and caps for the ends. I prefer to leave the third and fourth level work to others!

We were able to get lots of work done on the Saturday and Easter Monday with it being a school holiday.

I hung red nest curtains around the next boxes. There are four nest boxes back-to-back as the nest areas have no lights. The hens prefer to lay their eggs in a dark, sheltered area.


Manure ends are of course extremely important as the removal of manure keeps the air quality good for the hens and ourselves, keeps the eggs clean, and provides a good environment for the hens. The Clark guys handle these areas.

Another area that is a little more complicated is the egg elevators that will take the eggs from the egg belts and transfer them to a conveyor that will go into the egg packing room.

There were still a few skids of equipment outside and these would have to be brought in the barn when needed. Also, there is room in the barn for a fourth row of housing, but this is not being done now, and is there for any future growth of the egg business. This area has actually turned out to be very beneficial for storage and assembly of parts before they are installed on the housing.

Construction of parts also occurs as many of these parts come in pieces that need to be put together. For example, the cage doors have a white plastic centre, then a red left and red right hinge that must be hammered in with a mallet. We need approximately 1,800 of these. Our daughters Nicole and Charlotte did many of these. I also put together the 24 egg belt rollers that go at the far end of the barn.

We took black plastic waterline connectors to the house and put a clamp on each end in the evening with the TV to break up the monotony of the job. The warmth of the house made the plastic more pliable when putting the clamps on.

March turned out to be a very busy month. We were relieved and happy to see the construction team finish off a back area beyond the main barn that is manure storage as they were here since November. Yippee!!!

We have made it to Easter with the hen housing well underway and will hop into April being able to see the finish line for this stage of the process.

CLICK HERE  to read more about Cindy's experience transitioning from a conventional to an enriched layer barn.
Published in Blog
February turned out to begin very cold, more snow and windy. Any work that could be done inside the new barn building was done when temperatures were not frigid. Some days were too cold to get any work done.

Electrical lines for lights got installed on the ceiling and the baffle on the west side. Any work that had to be done on the ceiling or high areas had to be done before the scissor lift got picked up.

The arrangement with the scissor lift was that you pay a weekly rate, and when you have it for three weeks, you get the fourth week free. This is what worked for us.

From February 4 - 6, the insulation got put in the attic. The first day was very mild with the snow melting on the roof causing a steady stream of dripping off the steel roof. This job had two fellows who were experienced in insulating attics completing the work.

We had two overhead doors to be installed – one for the cooler for Burnbrae Farms to do their weekly pick-up of eggs, and the other as a big entrance to the main barn when the birds arrive and then depart after 51 weeks.

Timing for this had to be when the interior was completed so that the doors could be fastened to completed walls and ceiling.

Again, working in a freezing temperature environment had to be avoided.

Both doors got installed February 11 and finishing these up occurred the next weekend.

For the entire month, we were anticipating getting the concrete for the floor poured.


I have never watched the weather forecast so diligently, and part of frustrating February was that we wanted the concrete floor to get poured.

Nick chose a warmer stretch of weather later in the month to start using propane to run the heater to begin thawing the ground.

Preparation work to level the floor for concrete took place on February 23 and continued early in the next week. The weather forecast had sun and mild temperatures for that week.

Once again, loads of stone were brought in, a bobcat brought stone inside, and a roller flattened out the floor to make it level with the help of laser level that was set up on a tripod in the corner of the barn.

February 28 brought a 13-degree day, and the concrete floor was finally poured.

There were a dozen guys doing the pour, running the concrete pumping truck, and spreading and levelling the concrete.

The first concrete truck came by 8:00 A.M. and the last truck load was done by 12-noon. A truck came every half hour. All of this activity brought curious neighbors to sneak a peek at all the action going on.

The next couple days were filled with finishing the concrete with power trowels to give it a smooth finish.

March came in like a lion on the 1st with a snowstorm in Haldimand County, about 15 centimeters of snow, and the first snow day for school kids.... so, we were glad that this big job was done.

Cindy Egg Farmerette

CLICK HEREto read more about Cindy's experience transitioning from a conventional to an enriched layer barn.
Published in Blog
Chicken is Canada's favorite protein, according to a recent survey conducted by Leger for Chicken Farmers of Canada. Eighty-four per cent of Canadians purchase fresh chicken on a regular basis, and 90 per cent place chicken among the top three meats they eat most often – consuming more Chicken than beef [72 per cent], pork [52 per cent] or other meats.

Among all respondents, 84 per cent report they have something that they like about chicken. The most common reasons Canadians like chicken products include flavour/taste, the versatility of chicken, and the fact that chicken is a healthy source of protein.

Despite their love of chicken products, the survey also reveals many Canadians don't have the full story when it comes to their knowledge of the Canadian chicken farming industry:
  • Only 43 per cent of respondents believe that Canadian chickens are raised without hormones or steroids, when in fact hormones and steroids have not been used in Canadian chicken production for more than 50 years.
  • On average, respondents who gave an answer, believed only 45 per cent of chicken farms in Canada are family owned and operated, when in reality Canada is home to 2,800 chicken farms and over 90 per cent are family owned and operated.
  • 57 per cent of respondents correctly believe there are animal welfare standards applicable to all chicken farms across Canada. These standards are consistent, mandatory and third-party audited.
  • 34 per cent of Canadians believe chicken is the most sustainable meat, and this checks out: Canadian chicken farms lead in sustainability with the lowest greenhouse gas emissions among all livestock commodities.
  • When you have access to the facts, it's clear: Canadian chicken farms lead the way in sustainability while providing affordable food to Canadians. The industry is a key economic driver, sustaining 87,000 jobs across the country while contributing $6.8 billion to GDP and $2.2 billion in tax revenue to all levels of government.
Survey completed by Leger: An online survey of 1,500 Canadians was completed between Nov 13 and 23, 2017, using Leger's online panel, LegerWeb. A probability sample of the same size would yield a margin of error of +/-2.5%, 19 times out of 20.
Published in News
The provincial government will invest up to $713 million toward a unique agreement between the University of Guelph and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) to further discovery and innovation and position Canada as a world leader in agri-food.

Through the renewed OMAFRA-U of G agreement, OMAFRA and U of G will build on world-class agri-food research, including new advances in artificial intelligence, big data analytics and precision agriculture.

“Scientific research is critical to developing innovations that benefit people, animals and the environment,” said U of G president Franco Vaccarino. Agri-food innovation also attracts investment and highly skilled talent, making the economy more robust, creating jobs and sustaining strong communities, he said.

The agreement brings together academia, government and industry to support and enhance Ontario’s agri-food sector through cutting-edge research and innovation.

The commitment to the agreement was renewed for another 10 years today during an event at U of G attended by leaders from industry, government, and academic institutions.

“The partnership has led to breakthrough discoveries and revolutionary advancements during the past two decades. It demonstrates the profound impact that government and universities can have when they work closely together with shared goals,” Vaccarino said.

“This novel partnership has positioned Ontario and Guelph as the epicentre of agricultural research and innovation in Canada, and supported industry development and growth – contributing billions to Ontario’s economy.”

Jeff Leal, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs and the Minister Responsible for Small Business, said, “Our government looks forward to continuing to partner with the University of Guelph to ensure Ontario’s agri-food sector is the most innovative and productive in the world, producing the highest quality and safest food for Canada and the world.”

Agri-food is a leading Ontario economic sector, contributing more than $37 billion to the province’s economy and employing more than 800,000 people.

As highlighted by Dominic Barton and the Advisory Council on Economic Growth, Canada can be a global leader in agri-food, with new value-added products, technologies, and solutions, said Malcolm Campbell, U of G’s vice-president (research).

He added that one of today’s great global challenges is safely feeding the world’s rising population while protecting the environment.

“It’s a hefty challenge, but U of G, as Canada’s food university, is up to the task. We have a 150-year legacy in agri-food and a reputation for innovation and discovery,” Campbell said.

The OMAFRA-U of G Agreement will provide the platform necessary to create new knowledge, and devise novel technologies and agricultural practices to produce safe, nutritious food while preserving biodiversity, animal welfare, and human health.

U of G is first in Canada and 14th in the world for agricultural science according to the U.S. News & World Report ranking of best global universities for agricultural sciences.

The Ontario Veterinary College is first in Canada, third in North America and sixth worldwide among veterinary colleges in a ranking by Quacquarelli Symonds, which names the world’s best universities in 46 academic subjects.

The University’s $77-million Food from Thought research project, funded by the federal government in 2016, is creating novel tools for producing more and safer food while also protecting the environment.

U of G and OMAFRA established an enhanced agreement in 1997; it was renewed for 10 years in 2008. The new agreement will take effect April 1, 2018.

Under the new agreement, the University receives up to $71.3 million a year to manage research and innovation programs and related facilities, including the Ridgetown Campus, the Agriculture and Food Laboratory program, the Animal Health Laboratory program, and 15 research stations and centres.

The Agreement also supports knowledge mobilization and commercialization.

Examples of innovations stemming from the OMAFRA-U of G Agreement:
  • New detection methods and management systems for diseases such as avian influenza and biocontainment facilities. Researchers study highly hazardous food and animal-to-human pathogens and viruses such as West Nile virus and tuberculosis, and lower-level pathogens, such as coli 0157:H7, Salmonella and Listeria, in a safe and secure environment
  • The world’s first compostable coffee pod, PurPod100, developed by a research team at U of G’s Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre working with Club Coffee and Competitive Green Technologies
  • Governor General’s Award for Innovation-winning technology to identify and breed cows with better immunity to diseases, reducing antibiotic use and saving livestock producers millions of dollars annually
  • A national research group studying cropping practices that mimic natural ecosystems and improve resiliency to climate change
  • The commercialization of discoveries and innovations via Gryphon’s LAAIR (Leading to the Accelerated Adoption of Innovative Research). Researchers pitch their ideas to a panel of industry experts and business managers; winners receive grants to turn ideas and discoveries into a marketable product or technology
  • Research on biocarbon and other unconventional fuels to improve efficiency and sustainability
  • A natural formula, hexanal, to prolong the shelf life of fresh produce
  • Smartphone applications that identify and control field pests
Published in News
As the due date approaches for the transition from conventional cages to either fully enriched or cage-free layer systems, we will discuss the differences between these systems. We also will explore the other question many farms are facing: build a new barn or retrofit an existing structure. Join us as we share on these important topics, and respond to your questions.
Published in Webinars
December 6, 2017, Toronto, Ont. - The holidays are a time when the issue of hunger seems to hit home a little harder, and when an army of Food Bank volunteers continue to work, helping their neighbours.

This season, Egg Farmers of Canada (EFC) has decided to celebrate those generous people with a delicious and nutritious surprise breakfast hosted by none other than Chef Lynn Crawford.

"I have been a partner of Egg Farmers of Canada for many years now and I know how deeply Canadian egg farmers are rooted in their communities," chef Lynn Crawford, EFC's national chef ambassador, said in a press release.

"Preparing this meal to say thank you to food banks volunteers was a very humbling experience."

EFC has been supporting Food Banks Canada for more than two decades, helping to deliver fresh, nutritious food items that help the issue of hunger in Canada.

"Every year, egg farmers donate more than a million eggs to community food banks," EFC chairman Roger Pelissero said.

"We're proud to partner with Food Banks Canada and Chef Lynn Crawford and are happy to celebrate the people who, by volunteering their time, contribute to the fabric of our communities."

Along with its affiliates, Food Banks Canada assists over 860,000 Canadians who turn to food banks each month.

Throughout the holiday season there is an increased demand for food banks services, creating a greater need for volunteers, support and donations.

"Sometimes an action as simple as making a cherished recipe or a meal can bring a lot of joy in someone's life," added Tania Little, director of development and partnerships at Food Banks Canada.

"We're very touched by the wonderful breakfast Egg Farmers of Canada and Chef Lynn Crawford prepared for our volunteers."

In the spirit of the holiday season, EFC and Food Banks Canada is calling on all Canadians to set aside some time for friends and neighbours who need them.

Bring joy to someone's life by sharing a cherished recipe or a meal on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #RecipesThatGive, or by supporting your local food bank.
Published in Companies
Blog number three follows what turned out to be a very busy November. I knew things were ramping up when I heard my husband Nick tell a salesman that he “wished there were two of him”.

First, I think I should elaborate on why we chose to convert to an enriched colony system. We looked at free-run and free-range, but our gut is telling us that the consumer will still want to purchase the cheapest eggs available in grocery stores.

Our son works at Food Basics and sees the specialty eggs passed over. Actually, they have to be shipped back as they are on the shelf to the expiry date.

As a family, including our children (all of whom are in their twenties), we decided we did not want to work in an environment where our hens would greet us openly upon entering the barn.

We also think an enriched system will give us more control with respect to animal care, our routine and the amount of time we spend in the barn.

In addition, we would probably have to have a bigger barn for free-run or free-range. That being the case, our present building site would have been compromised by size and perhaps would have had to be moved to a different location on the farm.

We decided to stay with Clark Ag Systems partly because they are only a half-hour away. Being nearby has aided in service calls for repairs to our conventional system.

What’s more, the Farmer Automatic system includes many interesting add-ons. I will discuss these more when we are at the housing installation phase of the build.

A busy month
In the last month, concrete work finally began. We built the forms for the concrete walls in the cooler, packing room and front area of the barn in a few days.

The first cement truck came on November 6th. This was exciting and relieved some stress for both of us, as we could see the barn build finally physically taking shape.

We had to bring in loads of stone. Also, the barn floor had to be levelled and packed with a roller to make a smooth floor for the concrete that would be poured on top in the future.

We used the services of Chris Best to haul in stone, move it, roll it and pack it. They also helped with excavating a new electrical line.

In the week of November 20th, three contractors were working on the same day.

Two were doing the concrete walls. Three were moving stone from the dump pile to a dump truck to the back of the barn site, spreading it on the floor and rolling/packing the stone to make a level floor.

And three men from Jorna Construction had started the preliminary work for building the first wall.

Nick is being the general contractor for the barn build project. He was overseeing all aspects, such as making sure the present water line from the deep well to our existing layer barn was buried beneath the floor, doing drawings for fan placement so the builder made the correct size of opening in the side walls and getting anything else that was needed.

Building a cistern under the cooler was a last minute decision. There was such a large hole under the cooler that it made more sense to use it as a cistern, instead of filling it in with gravel.

In that week, we also had the electricians come and install underground conduit for the electrical service. I think at least 10 truckloads of stone were brought in, and three loads made by the cement truck.

On Wednesday, November 22, the first west framed wall was up, and the size difference of the new barn compared to the present conventionally housed barn is quite impressive.

The opposite east wall was up two days later and we had the weekend to gaze upon all of the week’s efforts.

Saturday, Nick called upon a former worker to help him take down more of the existing pig barn so the carpenter has more working space at the south (far) end.

We are going to hold on to our hats for December, as it looks like we will need good weather to get everything enclosed before winter.

Even with all of this activity, barn chores still must get done. I find myself in the barn alone more, but know it is important for Nick to be present when building work is being done.

I can hear lots of extra banging, vehicles beeping, engines revving and hammering from inside the barn. I do think the chickens are getting used to this!

CLICK HERE to read more about Cindy's experience transitioning from a conventional to an enriched layer barn.
Published in Blog
July 12, 2017 - Biosecurity needs to be approached as a comprehensive process, not as a series of segregated actions, according to Jean Sander, DVM, senior technical services veterinarian for Zoetis.

For example, people about to enter a poultry house will put on their boots, coveralls, hair nets, but then remember they need a piece of equipment that’s in another house. They quickly retrieve it and bring it into another building without cleaning it first.

That’s a breach of biosecurity, Sander told Poultry Health Today.

The intent is to try and do the right thing, but too often biosecurity isn’t viewed holistically, continued the veterinarian, who primarily works with layer producers. READ MORE 
Published in Barn Management
June 29, 2017, Toronto, Ont. - Yorkshire Valley Farms is pleased to launch its organic pasture-raised egg program for the 2017 season.

In addition to following organic practices, farmers in the pasture-raised program provide an enhanced pasture area for hens to forage outdoors. As with all Yorkshire Valley Farms laying hens, the pasture birds enjoy organic non-GMO feed and a cage-free environment in which to lay their eggs.

Since ‘pasture-raised’ is not a defined labelling term in Canada, Yorkshire Valley Farms set about to create a set of standards to which all participating pasture farmers must adhere.

These pasture-raised criteria incorporate the organic standards, while also requiring that hens spend a minimum of 6 hours outdoors per day, weather permitting, in an organically-managed pasture that offers at least 20 ft2 (1.85m2) per hen.

The realities of the Ontario climate mean that this enhanced pasture access can only be ensured for a limited period each year. The pasture program generally runs from late May to October and the eggs are offered as a special seasonal offering.

When consumers buy a Yorkshire Valley Farms product labelled ‘pasture’, they are getting a product that comes from animals that have truly spent time outdoors, foraging on pasture.

In 2016, CBC Marketplace conducted nutritional analysis of a range of eggs and found that eggs from hens that spend time on pasture have higher concentrations of fat-soluble vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids. In particular, eggs from Yorkshire Valley Farms growers had more than double the amount of vitamin D, 3.5 times more vitamin E, and were the lowest in saturated fat compared to other eggs included in the sample set.
Published in Companies
May 9, 2017, Ottawa, Ont. – Dr. Bonnie Mallard, professor at the University of Guelph (U of G) has been named a recipient of the 2017 Governor General’s Innovation Award.

Mallard created the High Immune Response Technology (HIR), which manages livestock health through genetic identification. This sustainable and efficient approach was designed to meet consumer expectations for healthy, non-GMO products while maintaining profitability and addressing global food demands.

Mallard was nominated for the award by Universities Canada.

The Governor General's Innovation Awards recognize and celebrate outstanding Canadian individuals, teams and organizations whose exceptional and transformative work help shape our future and positively impact our quality of life.

The Governor General will present the awards to the winners during a ceremony at Rideau Hall, in Ottawa, on May 23, 2017, at 6 p.m.

Listed below are the other winners and their citations:

David Brown
Island View, New Brunswick

David Brown founded MyCodev Group in order to resolve a lack of supply of chitosan, a valuable pharmaceutical ingredient that is essential in a wide variety of medical devices and drugs. Mr. Brown's innovative technology produces chitosan directly from a fungal fermentation, a process that uses very little energy or chemicals. Mycodev Group is only four years old and is selling its chitosan to major pharmaceutical and medical device companies around the world.
Nominated by Futurpreneur Canada

Marie-Odile Junker
Ottawa, Ontario

Marie-Odile Junker has been a pioneer with respect to endangered Aboriginal languages in Canada, exploring how information and communication technologies can be used to preserve these languages. She has also brought together numerous speaker communities by using a participatory-action research framework that has resulted in the creation of several collaborative websites, including the Algonquian Linguistic Atlas and its online dictionary.
Nominated by Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

Patricia Lingley-Pottie and Patrick McGrath (Strongest Families Institute)
Halifax, Nova Scotia

Dr. Patricia Lingley-Pottie and Dr. Patrick McGrath are the creators of the Strongest Families Institute, a non-profit organization that delivers evidence-based programs to children, youth and families through a unique distance-delivery system. Using proprietary software technology, trained coaches are able to connect with users by phone or via the Internet, thus allowing families greater flexibility when accessing services. The programs address common mental health problems and other issues impacting overall health and well-being.
Nominated by Ernest C. Manning Awards Foundation

Audra Renyi
Montréal, Quebec

Audra Renyi co-founded World Wide Hearing (WWH) Foundation, which uses affordable technology, market incentives and rapid training to help underprivileged people affected by hearing loss. Ms. Renyi is also the founder and CEO of earAccess, a for-profit social enterprise that aims to cut the price of hearing aids by 75 per cent. HAW uses innovative distribution models to ensure hearing aids and related services are available to those who need them the most.
Nominated by Grand Challenges Canada

Paul Santerre
Toronto, Ontario
Dr. Paul Santerre invented Endexo technology, a unique compound of surface-modifying macro molecules that are added to plastics during the manufacturing process of medical devices, like catheters. The special coating helps reduce clotting when the devices are used to treat patients, reducing the risk of adverse reactions and potentially deadly complications. Now being used in commercialized products in Canada, the U.S. and Europe, Endexo is helping to improve treatment outcomes for thousands of patients.
Nominated by Ernest C. Manning Awards Foundation
Published in Researchers

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