The new $14 million Cobb hatchery, using the latest energy saving technology, has been officially opened at Lafayette, Tennessee, USA.
The hatchery has been developed to supply the growing demand for Cobb parent stock in the United States, and will ultimately be supplied with hatching eggs from 27 breeder farms being constructed in conjunction with local farmers.
The opening was performed by Stan Reid, Cobb vice president of sales and marketing, before more than 140 guests from the local civic and business community and from the poultry industry.
The hatchery will begin producing parent stock in January and will have an output of more than 600,000 chicks/week when at full capacity later next year. It will be hatching predominantly the fast feathering Cobb500 and the Cobb700.
The complex, which includes a quality assurance and office facilities, will initially employ 35 people who have been undergoing training at the Cobb hatchery in Kentucky.
The design incorporates state-of-the-art heat biosecurity and also recovery systems to save energy and reduce the carbon footprint. A single-stage design was chosen to aid biosecurity and temperature profile settings. Incoming fresh air passes through micro-filters and ultra-violet light to supply the entire hatchery.
The heat recovery system, one of the first in a US hatchery, will save 35–40% energy usage and is expected to pay for itself in well under two years.
Heat is recovered from the developing embryos and recycled to warm the incoming hatchery air, which requires little or no extra heating. As an additional benefit, the warmed water in the heat exchanger returns to the chiller.