WATT PoultryUSA - January 2018 - 22
22 ❙ WATTPoultryUSA
Why welfare is integral to
good poultry management
Whether during rearing or at broiler slaughter,
following best practices can ensure bird welfare.
contribute to healthy
footpads, keep air quality
high and protect birds
from cold floors.
Mafoto | Dreamstime
Good flock management, health and welfare are inseparable. Welfare is not a separate set of management
practices; it is ensuring that all management practices are
performed correctly and in a timely manner.
This was among the key messages during " Global
Focus on Poultry Welfare ," a webinar hosted by WATT
Global Media and sponsored by Cobb-Vantress .
Large companies increasingly have their own poultry welfare standards , but they may also be subjected
to audits from suppliers that have their own welfare
criteria, and it is essential that any standards to which
producers adhere are fully understood.
Attendees heard from Dr. Karen Christensen, associate professor and extension manager, University of
Arkansas, that it is not enough to be familiar with welfare standards, be they internal or external. Producers
must have a deep understanding of why standards are
in place and their impact on broiler welfare. It is only
by understanding expectations, and what is behind
them, that producers will remain committed to improving welfare on-farm.
Alongside strict adherence, rapid reactions when
issues emerge is as important as, given ever-shorter
rearing periods, even losing a few hours can affect
Every detail must be managed 24 hours a day, but
the first 14 days of a broiler's life are critically important. These first two weeks can represent 20-25 percent of production time.
Management best practices
Following management best practices can have a significant effect on welfare, for example ensuring access to
fresh feed and water. Maintaining and sanitizing water
www.WATTAgNet.com ❙ January 2018