An important aspect of the collaboration with farmers and nutritionists is the composition of feed to ensure the best possible health for chickens and the most effective use of feed.
All feed is made from vegetables and careful planning goes into the use of several ingredients in the composition of the feed, with wheat and soya being the major components. We are studying the possibility of replacing a proportion of imported soya that is traditionally used as a feed protein with alternative local protein sources.
Our position on GMO
Opinions differ about the issue of GMO (genetically modified organisms, in this case soya and corn) in feed and its use is widely discussed. Scandi Standard has chosen to adhere to local opinions and therefore requires GMO-free feed in Sweden, Norway and Finland.
Chicken rearing is very resource-efficient compared with the rearing of other animals. For example, the amount of feed and the level of the impact on the climate are much higher in the production of pork and beef.
Feed efficiency is one of the most important indicators for optimising the rearing process. Chickens are very effective at converting feed into meat, and these are direct indicators of the quality of the ingredients and the feed, and of the level of care for the chickens.
Animal health and feed efficiency
|Antibiotics, percentage of treated flocks, %||<1||11.8|
|Foot health, foot points||<10||19 |
|Feed efficiency, kg feed/kg live weight||1.52||1.52||1.54||1.56||1.59|
The chickens’ health is monitored using a number of parameters. The central key indicators are the low use of antibiotics and foot health as indicators of good animal health and pen environment. The figures for the use of antibiotics above can be compared with approximately 40-80 percent of flocks treated in many European countries. Foot health is measured in terms of foot points; a low score indicates good foot health. Values under 15-20 are good in an inter- national comparison. The Irish Manor Farm is included for the first time in the reported figures for In order to compare with 2017, figures are also reported excluding Ireland.
This diagram indicates feed efficiency when rearing different kinds of animals, measuring the amount of feed in relation to growth (the weight is the live weight). The figures should be seen as the mean value of the feed conversion rate (FCR) ascertained from several published sources. An improvement in feed efficiency (lower value) saves natural resources and costs at several stages: less cultivated land, transport, lower energy use for producing feed and less water consumption throughout the value chain.
Smart alternatives to soy as protein feed
Today approximately 20 percent of the feed used for our chicken, which is about 110 000 tonnes 2019, is imported soy. Company and/or sector requirements are present in the countries we operate in to ensure that the soy is of good quality and responsibly produced and sourced. Sweden, Norway and Finland utilise soy that is certified according to RTRS or ProTerra. In Ireland where we have our own Scandi Standard feed production, a European feed industry led certification is used.
We are looking into the possibilities of replacing part of the imported soy that is traditionally used as a feed protein with other, locally produced protein sources. This is because the broadening of the feed raw material bas has the potential to further improve animal welfare, reduce risks related to far away supply systems and price shocks, improve bird performance, and support local agriculture. In 2019 we initiated a development project, whereby we work with feed specialists to test new feed mixes. This enables a significant proportion of the soya to be replaced with locally sourced beans, peas etc.