Today our team visited poultry slaughterhouse Remkes in Epe. Remkes mainly slaughters broiler-breeders.
Remkes has a covered parking area near the slaughterhouse where poultry trucks can park in the shade. Four fans are placed on either side of the parking area and another four fans are installed underneath the roof. Twelve fans in total. Special netting was attached to one side of the roof to create some shade but it did not completely prevent the sun from hitting the trucks. Also, a little less broiler-breeders were slaughtered during this heat.
Unfortunately, these measures were insufficient to protect the chickens against heat stress during the extreme heat. One truck was waiting in the parking area during our visit. Many of the chickens onboard were suffering from heat stress; breathing heavily with an open beak, stretching their necks and sticking their heads out of the crates.
We provided Remkes with some practical solutions to reduce heat stress, including: Painting the asphalt white, to reflect the heat and doubling the number of fans to improve airflow.
We would like to compliment Remkes on their transparency. Even though it was extremely hot and busy that day, we were welcome to inspect the animals, take temperature and humidity readings and give advice. We are confident Remkes will implement the improvements we suggested.