Seven hatcheries adopt new air cleaning technology

The latest air cleaning technology from Air Scientifics for destroying micro-organisms is now installed in seven Aviagen hatcheries in Europe.

The Close Coupled Field Technology (CCFT), using a controlled high voltage field against airborne viruses, bacteria and fungi, is operating in vaccine preparation rooms at the hatcheries across Western Europe.

Food Chain Innovation, which is working with Air Scientifics in introducing the technology to the poultry industry, has been working with Aviagen on trials at its hatcheries over the past 18 months.

David Harrower, UK head of hatchery and egg distribution centre for Aviagen, said the technology was doing a fantastic job in keeping the air extremely clean in the vaccine preparation areas.

“We carried out trials in the UK for over a year and invariably the equipment reduced the bacterial counts to extremely low levels,” said Mr Harrower. “The equipment is unobtrusive and has very low running costs”.

“We are now looking at extending use of the technology to other areas of the hatchery and farms. It is not a substitute for good hygiene — but an effective complement to it.”

The trials at Aviagen and other locations showed a consistent pattern in reducing the bacterial count, said Allan Meldrum, director of Food Chain Innovation.

“There is increasing focus generally on the importance of having a clean environment for preparing vaccine given to day-old chicks. We are consistently finding that CCFT technology is achieving a significant reduction in bacterial count in these areas,” said Mr Meldrum.“Aviagen has recognised the value of this new technology as part of their commitment to continued improvements in chick quality and performance.”

Mr Meldrum added that long-running trials had also shown the benefit that CCFT technology could bring to other critical areas — with the candling and egg transfer rooms in the hatchery and surface counts in farm egg stores consistently showing a considerable reduction in bacterial counts.

● The CCFT units generate a controlled high voltage field that destabilises all airborne biological and chemical compounds passing through the equipment and degrades them to their constituent molecular parts.

● Food Chain Innovation is a joint venture between Allan Meldrum and Jim Johnston, two widely experienced entrepreneurs in the global poultry business, aimed at bringing innovative technology from other industries to the food chain.

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