WATT PoultryUSA - October 2015 - 11

WATT POULTRY USA ❙ 11

Related story: Dispelling myths of the
poultry slaughter modernization rule,
www.WATTAgNet.com/articles/15756

» Jennifer Rhodes, extension
educator for Agricultural and Natural
Resources, University of Maryland
Extension, Queen Anne's County

be expected to be of a greater total
volume.
"The other thing to remember
is that at least 40 percent, maybe
higher, of the antibiotics used in
chickens are not used in humans.
Use of these antibiotics in chickens
has no effect on antibiotic resistance that we see in human pathogens," he said.
While most poultry companies are already compliant with
new federal guidelines on antibiotic usage in the Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) Veterinary
Feed Directive, the guidance in
the directive becomes mandatory
next year.
It is a myth to say that farmers give antibiotics to their flocks
with no oversight.
"I see this myth repeated in
stories in the press quite often,"
Glisson said, "that farmers are
indiscriminately using antibiotics. That's not even possible,
because the farmers don't even

»

October 2015 ❙ www.WATTAgNet.com

have the antibiotics.
"Farmers don't own the chickens, and they don't make decisions about feeds and medications
given to the flocks. The chickens
are owned by a company, and the
company makes the decision about
whether antibiotics will be used in
the flocks.
"The poultry company veterinarian is the one who makes the decisions about how to treat the birds,
the use of antibiotics, what kind,
and for how long," Glisson said.

MYTH 2: Poultry litter is a waste

product, and poultry farms are a
major source of pollution.

"Poultry litter is not a waste
product," said Jennifer Rhodes.
"The manure that comes out of
our chicken houses is locally produced, organic fertilizer. People
forget that organic farmers can use
it to grow their crops. We use it
on our farm to grow our corn. It is
certainly not a waste of a valuable
resource."

Rhodes grows 80,000 broilers
per flock, or half-a-million birds
per year, which generates about
543 tons of manure. Not all of
that manure, however, leaves the
Rhodes farm every year. A complete clean-out of all of the litter
in her poultry houses is performed
only every five years. In the intervening years, only the litter in the
center of the house is removed,
which amounts to around 200 tons.
"We have several thousand
acres that we farm, so we're able
to utilize that litter. We're only using one to two, maybe three tons
of manure per acre on our crops."
Rhodes said the Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA) greatly
overestimates the amount of manure being land applied in the
Chesapeake Bay watershed every
year. The EPA's estimates assume
that all the manure is land applied
every year.
What's more, the manure that
is moved off farms on Delmarva is
being well-managed so as to avoid

"THE MANURE THAT COMES OUT OF OUR CHICKEN
HOUSES IS LOCALLY-PRODUCED ORGANIC FERTILIZER. WE USE IT
ON OUR FARM TO GROW OUR CORN. IT IS CERTAINLY NOT A WASTE
OF A VALUABLE RESOURCE."

- JENNIFER RHODES


http://www.WATTAgNet.com/articles/15756 http://www.WATTAgNet.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of WATT PoultryUSA - October 2015

Contents
WATT PoultryUSA - October 2015 - Cover1
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WATT PoultryUSA - October 2015 - Contents
WATT PoultryUSA - October 2015 - 2
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