Poultry Transport video released!
made by Animal Transport Guides project
The practical video on how to best transport poultry, based on the guide to Good Practise ( click here) for the transport of poultry and three dedicated Fact Sheets, is now available. This video provides practical advise to ensure that birds transported remain in good welfare, and is available with translated subtitles in 8 languages.
The EU-funded Hennovation project was an exercise in bringing egg farmers together with researchers to develop practical ways to improve welfare, as Tony McDougal discovers.
Researchers have partnered with farmers to draw up practical new measures for improving the health and welfare of farmed poultry.
The 2 ½ year EU-funded Hennovation project, which ended this autumn, has been finding ways to introduce practice-led innovation in sustainable animal welfare through the development of innovation networks.
Hennovation: “Practice lead innovation supported by science and market-driven actors in the laying hen and other livestock sectors”
The Hennovation project demonstrated the potential of innovation led by producers and industry (on-farm, during transport and at the abattoir) through the establishment of innovation networks that proactively searched for and utilized new ideas to make their business more efficient and sustainable. The networks initially tackle two particular issues of concern in the production chain: injurious pecking and the transport and use of end-of-lay hens. 19 innovation networks were mobilized at different levels of the production chain, local, national and European level in five countries (United Kingdom, Sweden, The Netherlands, Spain and The Czech Republic) These networks were supported by science driven-actors, such as veterinary surgeons, farm advisors and scientific researchers, and market-driven actors, such as those that buy eggs e.g. retailers, packers, food processors, and those certifying egg production e.g. farm assurance companies and certification schemes.
The on-farm networks, 15 in total, focussed on various aspects that are known to have influence on injurious pecking. Injurious pecking is a problem that has many risk factors and the networks tested a variety of innovative ideas. The off-farm networks, four in total, focussed on various aspects that are relevant for catching and transport of End-of-Lay hens.
Alongside product or technical innovation (e.g. new design of trolleys for depopulation, new type of litter material to reduce stress and encourage natural behaviour or the use of alpacas in organic systems to reduce predation), a variety of often less expected and sometimes unintended ‘soft’ innovations also emerged through these networks. These were related to protocol or process (e.g. a new way of monitoring Poultry Red Mite infestation and new relationships between production chain actors, for example the pullet rearers).
Based on the innovative ideas tested by the innovation networks 38 Practice Abstracts and an additional five technical notes were developed by the network facilitators for use in practice by end-users.
The European Commission, DG Sante project aims to improve animal welfare around transport. The project will develop and disseminate Guides to Good and Best Practice for animals transported within Europe and to third countries for slaughter, fattening and breeding. Guides will be developed for cattle, horses, pigs, poultry and sheep transport. The project started in May 2015 and will finish by the end of 2018.
The project is divided into 5 tasks
•Task 1: Collection
Collect and collate appropriate best practices implemented and supported by scientific evidence
•Task 2 and 3: Development
Develop practical guidelines with those that will use it
•Task 4: Dissemination
Disseminate these guidelines through the networks of the main European stakeholder groups involved
•Task 5: Verification
To verify if the new transport guidelines reached the end-users
See the project website for more information (e.g. guides, factsheets and roadshows; available in 8 languages: English, German, French, Greek, Romanian, Polish, Spanish and Italian).
You can also sign up for the newsletter of the Animal Transport Guidelines project.
Head-only stunning offers alternative to gas by Jake Davies (Editor Poultry World).
Many consider water bath or controlled atmosphere stunning to be the two best choices when choosing ways to render poultry unconscious before a more welfare-friendly kill. But one Dutch company is marketing an alternative, stunning poultry by the head individually.
Feeding grit or grain on the litter is a good measure to keep laying hens occupied and reduce the risk for feather pecking. UK research found that this practice also reduced the incidence of smothering.