More than 300 submissions across sectors were made for this year’s EuroTier innovation awards, originating from 182 exhibitors from 23 countries — an all-time high for the event. The winning entries were judged by an independent panel, which awarded five gold medals and 19 silver medals. Among winners for use in poultry production were:

  • Gold . Aeroscalder, from Marel Stork Processing. The Aeroscalder bypasses the problem of high water and power use associated with traditional methods of scalding. The Aeroscalder passes water enriched with hot air at high speed over carcasses. This results in savings of up to 75 percent for water and 40 percent for power. The air/water mixture is generated directly next to the spray chamber so that the overall system requires less space than previous equipment and machinery. Scalding conditions are monitored by sensors, and as the carcasses have no direct contact each other via the water, cross contamination is eliminated. 
  • Silver . Galli-Luxmeter, from Hato BV Lighting. Poultry’s vision is different to that of humans, notably perception of light intensity at various wavelengths. This is particularly important given the new light sources that are being adopted. Traditional bulbs have emitted light primarily in the red to infrared range; however, the main spectrum for new light sources is largely in the green to ultraviolet range. The setting and checking of light intensity in poultry houses using normal lux meters does not correspond to birds’ light sensitivity. The Galli-Luxmeter measures according to the sensitivity of poultry, contributing substantially to achieving the correct lighting in line with welfare requirements. 
  • Silver . Automatic Dung Belt Control, Big Dutchman International. Dung belts run inconsistently when loaded unevenly, making correction of pre-tension necessary to stop the belts from tearing as a result of rubbing against the guides. In modern systems, belt repair or replacement is labor-intensive, and so in practice it is common to adjust them manually via a set screw when running is inconsistent. However, this is often forgotten, and the result is damage to the belt. Moreover, inconsistent running has tended to increase with newer ways of keeping layers, and so automatic correction via the dung belt control should help to keep this problem to a minimum. 
  • Silver . Anta Phyt BLT, from Dr. Eckel, is a feed additive based on phytogenic substances and carriers with prebiotic action, which has been developed with scientific research. The product has been subjected to a rigorous licensing procedure and offers the promise of action against pathogens, so lessening the need for antibiotics. Not only does it improve animal health, but helps to protect the environment. Although developed for poultry, with modification, it can be used in other species.