Key Trends for Commercial Poultry Farmers to Watch

First Financial Bank
Aug 25, 2021
What are some of the key trends in poultry farming? Check it out.

According to industry reports, the global poultry market is expected to grow from $310.7 billion in 2020 to $322.55 billion in 2021, reaching a truly astonishing $422.97 in 2025. This growth is largely driven by companies updating their operations and recovering from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, which presented a number of challenges and setbacks for the poultry industry.

As the poultry market continues to evolve, there will be opportunities for farmers to grow and change along with it. Below are some of the key trends to keep an eye on as you consider potential ideas for your business success.

1. Remote Sensing

One of the main challenges faced by poultry farmers during the pandemic was people being unable to move between different farms and locations. This forced many farmers to adjust how they manage their animals and business operations. Some farmers turned to remote sensing, which gave them the tools to access real-time status updates on their farm from their phone, tablet or computer.

Even without a pandemic, remote sensing can help. Now regardless of the weather, your staffing levels or time of day, you can get real-time updates on a variety of factors, such as conditions within your poultry house, bird performance, bird health and welfare, feed and water consumption levels, and more. These can also be used to set alerts for when something falls outside the norm – for example water levels or air quality. This technological approach to poultry farm management is proactive instead of reactive, identifying problems when they happen before they cost you valuable time, stock or resources.

As a poultry farmer, remote sensing can help you monitor your flock away from the farm, allowing you to improve the health and welfare of your animals and optimizing your business’s operations.

2. LED Lighting

From great light efficiency to low power consumption plus a long service life, there are many reasons why LED lighting is becoming an increasingly good option for the cost-conscious and environmentally friendly poultry farmer. The energy-efficient, narrow-band emission of LED sources make this piece of technology an invaluable tool for poultry farms by reducing both electrical expenses and potentially increasing production.

Light is a critical environmental factor in poultry production, impacting a farm’s efficiency, animal welfare, and growth rate. You can use LED lighting to reduce your flock’s stress and mortality, regulate their circadian rhythm, and boost the production of egg, meat, and other protein sources, while simultaneously lowering your energy use and utility bill. For context, some estimates state that LED bulbs can result in as much as 80-85 percent energy savings when compared to incandescent bulbs.

If you’re interested in upgrading your lighting system, make sure to consult with an expert or confirm that your integrator will allow you to use LED bulbs. If you can use LEDs, your integrator or service technology provider may specify which brands they allow.

3. Artificial Intelligence

By 2050, the average poultry farm will generate 4.1 million data points through online sensors and devices, a staggering amount of data that no mere mortal could be expected to parse through. What solution can poultry farmers apply to manage such an overwhelming amount of information?

More and more farms are turning toward artificial intelligence (AI) to automatically collect data that provides in-depth analysis and optimizes farm output. For example, one Finnish farm used smart cameras to monitor chicken broiler activity and welfare, then used AI to quantify the collected data and identify variations in bird behavior that then allowed them to improve efficiency and address animal health challenges.

There are many applications for artificial intelligence, from poultry production to supply chain management, for both large and small operations. Advancements in cloud computing and hardware have lowered the cost of AI technology, making it more accessible to poultry farmers without endlessly deep pockets.

As you plan to expand your business, consider using AI to unlock new insights on the environmental conditions of production facilities and day-to-day management activities, to improve animal health, reduce losses, and help your staff improve production efficiency.

4. Probiotics

Consumers are more health and safety conscious than ever, and the wise poultry producer should make sure to invest in maintaining a disease-free operation. Researchers have identified several challenges for poultry farmers after the COVID-19 outbreak, identifying poultry immunity, health, and production as barriers to the future growth of the industry.

Probiotics may help in these efforts. They can be delivered to poultry flocks via feed or drinking water. Probiotics may be useful for addressing some of the challenges in commercial poultry production, including Salmonella, Coccidiosis, heat stress, and antibiotics reduction. An ongoing study is even using probiotics to specifically target the infection and spread of Salmonella at multiple developmental stages, an intervention that researchers hope can greatly reduce consumer health risks.

As with any medical intervention, be sure to consult with your farm’s veterinarian and relevant decision-makers before introducing things like probiotics to your flock.

5. Solar Power

There are few things in this world that are truly cost-free — but the sun is one of them. As energy prices continue to rise, it’s the perfect time for poultry farmers to consider harnessing the power of the sun to generate electricity for their flocks.

As the world grows more conscious about climate change, the USDA is even offering incentives for farmers interested in pursuing green technology and grants to help farmers install renewable energy systems and make energy efficient improvements. Also, check out this database of state incentives for renewables and efficiency to find policies that could help you earn tax credits and/or cut your energy bill.

Not sure what might be best for your poultry farm? Chat with your advisors to see which of these trends may work and add value to your poultry operations.

Thinking about updating or expanding your operations? Ready to talk about your plans? Contact us.

When Refinancing Poultry Debt Makes Sense

Thinking of refinancing your poultry debt, but aren’t sure it’s a smart idea?

Purchasing a Poultry Farm

Looking to purchase a poultry farm?

Solving the Puzzle of Poultry Farm Financing

Everyone always asks me what they need in order to borrow money. They also ask if they can make money and most of the time the answer is “It depends.”

Entering the Poultry Business

Interested in pursuing a career as a poultry farmer and not sure how to get started?

Follow Us on Social