The first birds have left Annyalla Chicks’ new hatchery in Boston, Lincolnshire, that offers birds access to feed and water as soon as they emerge from the egg.
Incubation equipment was provided by Dutch hatchery specialists HatchTech, which says giving birds nutrition immediately post-hatch improves broiler performance.
HatchTech will also supply its HatchTraveller, which allows chicks to eat while being transported to farm.
The new hatchery has a capacity of 500,000 birds/week, with the option to expand to 2.2 million on the site eventually.
John Mawer, chief executive of Annyalla Chicks, said: “The evidence I’ve seen shows improvement in many areas, including enhanced hatching results, superior technical performance at broiler level and reduced medication requirements. Above all, the biggest attraction for us is the much-improved welfare it brings to our chicks.”
HatchTech’s international sales manager, Michiel van Veldhuisen, added: “We’re very pleased with this successful startup and the entrance of HatchCare chicks into the UK market.
“We’re proud to be able to provide Annyalla Chicks with all the benefits of early feeding, such as improved welfare conditions, undisrupted development of the birds and better technical performance at broiler farm level. We’re really looking forward to a successful rollout.”