A record number of delegates—more than 400—gathered in Tehran recently to reflect on 25 years of cooperation between Aviagen and its Ross distributor for Iran, Zarbal GP Company. The seminar, entitled “Production and Health in the Broiler Industry,” provided a platform for Zarbal parent stock and broiler customers to celebrate the success of the brand in the country and to learn more about best practice management for their Ross flocks.

Representatives from Aviagen and Zarbal presented on a range of topics, including egg handling, research and development and the Iran broiler industry.

Dr. Ali Baghbanzadeh, Zarbal GP managing director, talked about the strength of the Ross brand and its ongoing growth and success story in Iran. Baghbanzadeh paid special credit to David Butler, former Aviagen technical director, and other key personnel for their important roles in the early development of Ross in the country and for the strong relationships they have developed with the Zarbal team over the years. Finally, there was a presentation of Flock Awards to recognize and reward the achievements of Ross customers in the region.

Zarbal’s dedication to the Ross brand has led to an increase in market share in Iran from 0 to 70 percent over the past 25 years. A company spokesman said that the recipe for Zarbal’s success is based on the distributor’s commitment to continually investing in facilities, people and customer support: Notable investments in physical assets include the building of a new $10 million grandparent (GP) hatchery in 2011 and, more recently, farm ventilation improvements, renovations of existing farms as well as investments in information technology, personnel education and welfare

“Reaching 25 years of cooperation is a fantastic achievement, one which would not have been possible if it weren’t for the close ties and support shared between Zarbal and Aviagen,” said Baghbanzadeh. “The strength of the Ross product and the customer service provided by Aviagen have gone a long way to ensure the success of the Ross brand in Iran.”

During the seminar, Tom Exley, Aviagen president of international business, addressed attendees on the history of Aviagen’s cooperation with Iran and Zarbal, reflecting on some of the key milestones from the past 25 years. He commented, “Our strategic relationship is based on shared values, vision and principles and it is because of this we are celebrating such a fantastic anniversary. Zarbal’s loyalty and dedication to concrete investment in the Ross brand has been outstanding, with an exemplary customer service team, state-of-the-art facilities and commitment to providing tailored customer support.”