Poultry feed quality needs attention in UK

16-05-2008 | | |
Poultry feed quality needs attention in UK

Poultry farmers should pay attention to the quality of the feed they supply to their birds. That general recommendation is, in a nutshell, the major outcome of a report on the incidence of nicarbazin in British chicken.

Nicarbazin is a feed additive used for the treatment of coccidiosis. According to British figures, the incidence of residues has been falling, but still the industry wanted to know how further reduction could be achieved.
The report, initiated by the British Poultry Council (BPC), the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) and the National Farmers Union (NFU) aimed to find out why residues are still being found in chicken and how to avoid that. For that reason, samples under the National Surveillance Scheme (NSS) from February 2007 until February 2008 were tested. In addition, questionnaires were sent to the farmers involved.
The researchers thus hoped to find out what influenced nicarbazin incidence and levels.In short, the report gives the following conclusions:
• Current best practice advice be maintained
• All levels of farm staff should be trained and refreshed
• Managers remove existing blame culture to encourage mistake identification and rectification
• Managers should be aware of the precise amounts of nicarbazin needed and which feeds contain nicarbazin
• Farms should devise a system to make sure that any bin that has received feed containing nicarbazin is completely emptied in the period between the last delivery of nicarbazin containing feed and five days before the first birds go for slaughter
• Feed in the feeders should be tested regularly to protect against nicarbazin residues.
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