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Marine algae feed has spelt sea change in broiler chicken health

Farming | Published:

Two years ago I stumbled across BioComplex when I tried it on my new-build 200kW anaerobic digester at my family’s farm, Hendwr, near Llandrillo, Denbighshire.

Philip Hughes, Director Ekogea UK

I was amazed by the results. Its methane production, from which energy is created, increased by 150 per cent.

To be sure, I had samples tested in an independent laboratory and these confirmed the slurry released energy 150 per cent above industry standards, so I made contact with the product’s inventor, Slovenian biochemist Goran Dordic. With three others I then set up the UK arm of Goran’s Ekogea enterprise and began to scratch the surface of BCxF’s potential benefits.

Ekogea’s BioComplex (BCxF), comprising 100 per cent Ascophyllum Nodosum kelp, a fully approved EU feed ingredient, has been shown in trials – and closely monitored follow up sales – to improve gut health within broilers as a result of a number of unique BCx product features, which leads to healthier, larger and more resilient birds.

The marine algae-derived natural feed ingredient is transforming the health and profitability of broiler chickens up and down the country. The natural product, delivered via drinking water lines as a feed additive, has achieved exceptional results since being introduced to UK poultry farmers.

Because of the improved bird health, farmers are also seeing greater financial gains. An average broiler farm with four large poultry houses will, over a complete seven-week cycle, see a net benefit of around £16,000 to treat 160,000 birds.

Jamie Hatch, a Cornish poultry farmer, is one of the farms to take part in trials of our BCxF. The farm has around 170,000 birds per crop in numerous houses, producing in the region of 1.2 million broilers each year.

Jamie said: “Since using BCxF bird health has improved and, with weight increases, lower mortality, coupled with a much-improved feed conversion rate, the financial gains have far outweighed the cost of the product. The results have been astonishing and I am now using BCxF in the water for all of my sheds.”

The broiler production industry in the UK faces a number of significant challenges including the need to lower ammonia emissions, reduce the dependency upon antibiotics and provide a roadmap for farms to become more resilient and commercially viable.

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BioComplex has now been adopted by 20 UK farms and it's estimated that to date around two million broilers have benefitted from BCx.

Ekogea UK, which has offices in north Wales and Devon, is also developing a range of other seaweed-derived products for use in other agricultural sectors including pigs and cattle as well as the anaerobic digestion industry.

For more information visit our website: www.ekogea.co.uk

Philip Hughes, Director Ekogea UK

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