The poultry industry isn’t exactly recognized as one of frontline innovations and cutting-edge technology. However just like any industry, there is always space for improvement. And in that sense, the poultry industry is taking leaps and bounds.
Huge transformations can be seen in both ethical and technological terms within the poultry industry. First of all, the biggest supermarkets in the UK have banned the sale of battery (caged) hens. Big names like Sainsburys, Morrisons, and Marks & Spencers will only be selling barn-raised, free-range, organic eggs.
This is revolutionary for an industry that is known for low animal welfare standards, provoked by the increasingly cheap prices of animal products. These protocols have been in place for a few years now, and the next potentially ground-breaking innovation is in development.
It comes from In-Ovo, a Dutch start-up company who claims to be close to finalizing a solution to for the day old killing of male chicks. Currently, chicks are sorted into gender as they hatch. Males are destroyed, whilst females go on to produce eggs.
Each year, over 45 million chicks are killed in the Netherlands alone! Around the world, a total of 3.2 billion roosters are killed every year, for their lack of ovaries. In-Ovo’s development could cease such needless killing and waste. The technology manages to determine sex just 9 days into the incubation process, saving lives, as well as energy resources.
By a means of needle injection, it detects the marker of a fertilised egg. This is more practical and less invasive than other methods which exist today. The process takes about four seconds.
The breakthrough here is that the sex of the chick will be determined before they develop any sentience. Thus, it offers a humane solution to one of the biggest ethical concerns of consumers.
The group have collaborated with egg handling specialist Sanovo in developing the technology.
Therefore it could easily be adapted to existing equipment and methods.
In-Ovo hope to have the machine on sale by early 2018, providing that the testing is successful.
Besides the ethical evolution of the poultry industry, advancements can also be seen in the process of hygiene. If you have ever stepped foot inside a hatchery, it was probably with overalls on after a good disinfection process at the very least. Clinical hygiene is a must when it comes bringing new life into the world.
Hence, an array of technology works to ensure the cleanliest of environments. The latest technology is in the floor. Specialized flooring, such as Bolidtop 700, works in a number of ways to prevent bacteria and infections.
Its seamless, pore-free finish has a dirt repellent surface that not only meets hygiene standards, but offers additional benefits too. The flooring is slightly slip resistant and is easy to clean, whilst its seamless application prevents the growth of bacteria. It’s scratch resistant, so those feathery friends can squabble to their hearts content without making potential homes for bacteria in the floor.
The most fascinating feature of Bolidt’s product is the Anti-Microbial technology. Hailing from Bolidt’s work in the healthcare industry, the floor kills bacteria on contact. A difference in charge between bacterial cells and the floor’s surface eliminate the bacteria and prevent it from reproducing. The Anti-microbial technology is soon to be launched for the poultry industry.
This technique has been developed by Bolidt in collaboration with independent Dutch research organisation TNO. Whether in the food industry or healthcare, the floor is arguably the largest breeding ground for bacteria, so the implications of this technology is exciting to say the least!
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