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Morrisons Helps Poultry Industry Tackle Wet Litter

23 August 2012, at 2:51pm

UK - UK supermarket Morrisons has worked with its British poultry suppliers to develop an information pack aimed at helping them tackle the impact of wet litter on bird health and performance.

Problems associated with litter quality were a major factor for many farmers who are part of the Morrisons Farming Programme poultry producer groups. Morrisons funded the development of a new information-based teaching tool, using best practice gleaned from around the world, that can be used by our farmers.

Morrisons Agriculture Manager Louise Welsh said: “Debate on how to tackle problems associated with wet litter tends to dominate our producer group meetings and it was obvious there was a desire to find out what was happening elsewhere in the world to see if we could copy best practice.

“We worked with experts to examine global developments in improving litter quality and then pulled together the key points in an easy to use information pack. The main feature is a farmer friendly factsheet that can be pinned up or even loaded onto a computer and used on farm. This helps ensure everyone is aware of, and follows, measures that are known to help tackle something that is a costly problem for the British poultry industry.”

Morrisons is committed to working with poultry suppliers to help them identify ways of improving both efficiency and bird welfare.

Recent developments include the introduction of a higher welfare chicken range. This means all Morrisons standard chicken comes from farms raising birds with natural daylight and access to perches and pecking objects to stimulate activity.

The retailer has also commissioned a further raft of research from experts at the University of Bristol to measure the benefits of enrichment on bird health and wellbeing.

An initial study indicated that birds raised in higher welfare conditions were more confident. There was further good news for poultry farmers when closer analysis also indicated improvements in bird health.

For further information and a copy of the Wet Litter info pack please contact Louise Welsh on louise.welsh@morrisonsplc.co.uk.