PoultryUSA - May 2018 - 34
BROILER OF THE FUTURE
Learn more: Reducing
Breast meat myopathies
Liberona brought up one of the principal problems in poultry genetics and the market's demand for
quality breast meat: If breast meat yield is increasing,
there's almost always going to be more myopathies.
For example, he said, the phenomenon such as green
muscle, pectoral and infiltration myopathies - like woody
breast - didn't exist 15 to 20 years ago.
Every kind of breast meat myopathy is somehow related
to wing flapping. Because of this, Liberona projects the appearance of technologies to reduce human contact with the
animals and therefore limit excessive flapping. One of these
technologies, he said, is the use of automatic scales where the
bird can settle down and be weighed without being touched.
This avoids flapping when a worker must grab and hang the
bird from a scale in order to weigh it.
On the other hand, breeder hens will also be more
productive. According to data Liberona presented, the initial weight of an egg has grown between 0.8 grams to 1.2
grams per year due to genetic improvement. At the same
time, the number of eggs produced is increasing by 1.3 eggs
per year. For the males, Liberona projects they will continue to be fertile and that they will not need to depend on
artificial insemination as turkey breeders often do.
The growing desire for
Along with the conventional market
exists what Hubbard calls the premium
market, or one that demands robustness, trustworthiness, tradition,
quality and animal welfare.
This market includes the socalled organic and ecological
chickens, birds grown in a setting with greater freedom and
Conventional broiler breeds will continue
making genetic progress, but there may
be a limit to improvements.
Courtesy of Hubbard
woody breast: latest
broiler nutritional research,
Dr. Abit Moray, Auburn University
34 ❙ WATTPoultryUSA
birds grown more slowly than conventional broilers.
Market demand for this sector will grow between now
"The most important country for this is really the
United States, because of its volume of demand," Liberona
said. "In the U.S., there's already great enough expectation
from the market and important companies are interested
in having a slower-growing bird. It's a contradiction and
all that, but the market is asking for slower growth."
In this line, the chicken has a lower fat content because of
being raised in pastures and they don't develop the same problems as fast-growing broilers like ascites, sudden death, legs
that cannot support their growth and calcification.
Two markets for premium
Liberona said the premium chicken line appeals to two
markets. The first is the market for gourmet meat, which
exists mainly in Europe but is growing in the U.S. This
gourmet market is defined by denominations like Label
Rouge, humane certified, organic or pasture raised. The
second market is that which wishes to have a dual-purpose
bird, or a backyard bird. The dual-purpose bird produces
males which are grown for meat and females which are
kept for egg production. This type of bird is important for
markets in Asia and Latin America.
For this market, Hubbard developed 21 lines of males
of different colors and growth potential. Of these, seven
are slow growing, 11 are intermediate and three are fast
growing. These can be mated with seven lines of females
with distinct production and growth potentials too.
Another important difference in this market is that the
birds are more expensive to produce because they do not
have the same feed conversion as the birds in the conventional market and are only available for niche markets or
for buyers in certain countries. ■
www.WATTAgNet.com ❙ May 2018