On the 17th of October, Belgian retailer Colruyt announced an exclusive collaboration with 17 Belgian broiler farmers, in order to grow higher-welfare chicken (for press release, click here). Besides working with a slower-growing breed and reducing stocking density (European Chicken Commitment principles), Colruyt also acknowledges that optimal broiler welfare starts at day 1. For the reason, all day-old chicks will be hatched on-farm and all these farmers will apply the NestBorn system, as it is the most accessible and performant on-farm hatching system. NestBorn is facilitated in this collaboration by Belgian hatcheries Belgabroed and Vervaeke-Belavi, operating the system in Belgium, The Netherlands, France and Germany.
Bart Vermeiren, director of Belgabroed, states that he is “proud that Colruyt is taking a leading position in terms of broiler welfare, by being the first Belgium retailer adopting the innovative NestBorn technique, facilitated by Belgabroed”. Furthermore he states that “NestBorn allows the elimination of transport of day-old chicks and guarantees an immediate & uninterrupted access to feed & water, immediately after hatch. This gives a lot of benefits in terms of animal welfare and chicks can find quickly their natural rhythm of eating & drinking right after hatch, which results in better (gut)health and more robust chicks. The result is an impactful reduction of the utilization of antibiotics”.Click here for the press release