Improved environmental management is a key for poultry industry sustainability

Welcome to another edition of eChook!

In this edition, we are highlighting some of our research projects related to environmental management. The first project is led by Dr Angus Crossan from AECL, who is developing a best practice manual for on-farm euthanasia of spent hens. The treatment of hens at the end of their laying cycle in a humane and environmental responsible manner is of utmost importance to egg farmers today, as the lack of market for spent hens and new Land Transport Standards come into effect in Australia. This project will give egg farmers a standard operating procedure for the disposal of spent hens, potentially eliminating variation in on-farm disposal methods used throughout Australia.

The second project is led by Dr Matt Reading of DAFF, in Queensland. This project is examining value-adding strategies for producing spent poultry litter which will minimise nutrient losses to the environment. Litter produced using these strategies will be characterised by nutrient supply characteristics which are superior to traditional fertilisers. Pressure on waste stream utilisation will increase in the future as our industry moves towards a low carbon production environment; although the poultry industry is already the least carbon intensive industry in the livestock sector.

In addition, there has been a tremendous amount of excellent work done by the industry in managing environmental issues related to poultry production. Dust and odour are two important on-going challenges for the poultry meat industry. Here I will recommend a report entitled “Strategies to reduce odour emissions from meat chicken farms” published by one of our participants, FSA Consulting. This report details the various strategies for reducing odour emissions from meat chicken farms.

Finally, as the end of 2012 is getting close, on behalf of the Poultry CRC I would like to thank you for your continued support, and wish you and your family a wonderful festive season!


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