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Poultry World Pick of the Year 2020: Farm reports

As 2020 nears its end, we look back at our best farm reports of the year. We share our must-read articles so that you don't miss out.

Regenerative farming with innovative Eggmobile concept
On Angus MacIntosh’s farm, chickens are housed in Eggmobiles and are moved daily to live off the land. McIntosh’s ‘green transition’ happened when he left his corporate career as an accomplished stockbroker in London to return home to South Africa to build a clay home and become a barefoot regenerative farmer.

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Farmer Angus’ chickens live in Eggmobiles which are opened each morning to let the birds roam free during the day. Photo: McIntosh farm
Farmer Angus’ chickens live in Eggmobiles which are opened each morning to let the birds roam free during the day. Photo: McIntosh farm

Biosecurity by military design
Belgian broiler farmer Henk Ghyselen’s farm is located at an airbase in Koksijde, Belgium. Its airstrip also functions as the driveway to his farm. When he wants to expand he needs a municipal permit and NATO permission.

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The driveway of the farm doubles as a taxi runway for the Belgian air force. Photo: Dick van Doorn
The driveway of the farm doubles as a taxi runway for the Belgian air force. Photo: Dick van Doorn

Brazil: Dutch settlers adapting to new poultry opportunities
The Zegeren farm in Holambra, Brazil, is a 3rd-generation operation. At the heart of the farm there is a 24,000 bird parent stock facility, surrounded by an orange plantation and a potted plant business. “Every generation added something to the farm,” says Walter Zegeren. ‘’We are constantly chasing new opportunities and putting our money where it makes the most sense.”

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The entrance of Holambra in typical Dutch style. Photo: Fabian Brockötter
The entrance of Holambra in typical Dutch style. Photo: Fabian Brockötter

Farm Report: How Dutch broiler farmer eradicates Salmonella
Dutch broiler farmer Ad Jansen (54) got rid of a persistent Salmonella infection by applying multiple measures. These included filling cracks and seams and placing beetle strips, together with consistent cleaning, disinfection and sampling after each flock. His consultant, Jan van Beers of De Heus Voeders, noted the appearance of different Salmonella strains, making the battle even more challenging.

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Getting the flocks Salmonella free required an action plan that was followed for years. Photo: Dick van Doorn
Getting the flocks Salmonella free required an action plan that was followed for years. Photo: Dick van Doorn

Welfare label ensures a premium for meat and eggs
A group of poultry farmers in the French department of Sarthe focuses on animal welfare. The word ‘Liberté’ (liberty) is proudly printed on egg cartons and poultrymeat packaging. Several quality labels are designed to persuade consumers to spend more money on animal-friendly eggs and meat.

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The broilers produced under the Loue brand have plenty of space, both inside and outside the house. Photo: Hans Siemes
The broilers produced under the Loue brand have plenty of space, both inside and outside the house. Photo: Hans Siemes

Strong demand for mixed day-old chicks in South Africa
The coronavirus lockdown in South Africa really brought the country to a halt. However, for South African chicken producer Mike Bosch business was brisk. He saw an increase in demand for mixed day-old chicks.

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The Boschveld chicken has distinctive red and brown colours with white feathers in between. Photo: Boschveld
The Boschveld chicken has distinctive red and brown colours with white feathers in between. Photo: Boschveld