Today we met with Ruud Zanders from Kipster (egg producing company) to discuss the catching and loading of 11.000 Kipster hens earlier this month – using the Swedish method.
Ruud said that after the catching experience, he has been convinced the Swedish method is the correct approach and will now switch to this. The birds experience far less stress and the extra costs are acceptable. This means that from now own all Kipster hens will be caught and loaded the Swedish way (hens are held upright, max two at a time, instead of being grabbed by one leg and hung upside down). So, this is really positive news!
During our meeting, we also discussed how stress during catching and loading can be further reduced. For example, by improving accessibility to the hens in the aviary system, by experimenting with light and by getting the hens used to sounds and to people in the barn.