OptiBrut GmbH and HatchTech have signed an agreement for the construction of a new turn-key hatchery project, which will be located in Emlichheim, Germany. The hatchery will be equipped with 28 MicroClimer Setters 115.200 and 12 units of HatchCare–the hatcher with feed and water–initially producing 500,000 day-old-chicks (d.o.c.), with a future increase to a total of 800,000.

Initiators of the project are Klaas Knol and Hans Groot Koerkamp, who both bring a wealth of experience with them in the areas of breeder and broiler management, animal nutrition and hatching. Knol said, “OptiBrut strongly believes in the huge German and Dutch market potential for the supply of stronger and healthier chicks. As a hatcher, we will use the unique HatchCare system, in which newly hatched chicks are completely supplied with the basic necessities of life: feed, water and fresh air. HatchCare allows them to use the residual yolk, which is full of extremely important nutrients, for organ and immune system development. The experiences at our own broiler farms have convinced us that early feeding and direct access to water results in significantly healthier and stronger d.o.c., and a strongly reduced need of antibiotics.”


After hatching in the tray, chicks end up in the HatchCare basket, which is free from unhatched eggs and egg debris. This provides chicks with 40% more free living space. The chicks will not have to go through separators, significantly reducing stress. Because they leave the egg in an illuminated space, chicks experience less stress when the hatcher door is opened. HatchCare is equipped with noise-reducing motors that help to fade stressful motor humming softly into the background. The combination of reduced stress and access to feed, water and fresh air, lead to a system that is fitting well into today's demand for animal-friendly production.

Joost ter Heerdt, commercial director HatchTech, said, “There is a strong tendency to substantially decrease the use of antibiotics and grow chickens under more animal friendly production circumstances. We are continuously researching and developing products that meet the industries’ and consumer expectations and are extremely proud and happy that OptiBrut GmbH has chosen HatchCare for their new project.”