Independent hatchery business Annyalla Chicks has announced it will install the UK’s first HatchTech system, which provides feed, light and water to chicks as soon as they emerge from the egg.
Now operating in 10 countries, the Netherlands-headquartered business says its system improves bird performance and chick quality.
In conventional hatcheries the chicks that emerge from eggs first have up to a 72-hour wait for feed and water, relying on their yolk sac for nutrition.
But HatchTech’s Hatchcare system offers chicks both feed and water as soon as birds leave the egg.
Annyalla Chicks will install the system in its Boston Hatchery, Lincs, which will be operational by May next year.
Annyalla UK’s John Mawer said: “The evidence I have seen brings improvement in many areas including improved hatching results, technical performance at broiler level and reduced medication requirements to name but a few, but undoubtedly the biggest attraction for us is the much-improved welfare it will bring to our chickens.”
“We’re confident that early feeding is the correct direction for Annyalla to be going and will make a major contribution to our own operations and those of our customers.”
Michiel van Veldhuisen, international sales manager at HatchTech added that a key way to improve profits was through improving chick quality.
“At the same time, we’re seeing increasing pressure from public opinion for unconditional attention to be paid to animal welfare, antibiotic-free (ABF) production and 100% transparency.”