There is an accepted truth in the free-range egg industry that the better the welfare conditions for a chicken, the longer it will live, and the more it will produce. But despite this, producers have struggled to find a solution to reduce the number of chickens which die prematurely which is around 8%.
David Brass has spent decades working with industry leaders, scientists and academics to develop ways to overcome these problems.
“Genetically, the chickens used in our industry have been pushed to the limit, so the smallest human error - like leaving the lights on for too long, or the feed or water distribution not working properly for a few hours – or a disease challenge, can result in significant problems,” David explained. “A lost egg here and a lost egg there over the lifetime of a flock really adds up, and at the sharp end you’re looking at deaths, which can be significant numbers. Farmers and producers simply cannot stay on top of those problems 24-hours a day. And then it can be too late.”