Box of young chicks

A grandparent stock hatchery, closed by genetics firm Hubbard in December, has been reopened by integrator Banham Poultry, and is now hatching about 135,000 broilers each week.

The Fulletby hatchery near Horncastle, Lincolnshire, will remain in the hands of Hubbard’s parent company Groupe Grimaud for two years, with Banham running the site on contract. It is understood that the company has retained the entire workforce.

There was a short break in production at the beginning of the year, with the first chicks for Banham hatched on 23 January.

It has converted production from grandparent stock to broilers, replacing some of the birds that Banham was previously buying in for its farms.

See also: Hubbard closes UK hatchery

“It gives extra capacity and makes us a more integrated business,” said Lars Brattinger, general manager of agriculture at Banham Poultry.

He added that the contract would help meet the company’s expansion plans, and that it was looking for more parent stock-producers to serve the new site.

Despite the extra capacity, Banham is still buying in birds to meet demand, and is in the process of expanding production.

The new site complements about 550,000 birds produced at its existing hatchery in Fakenham, Norfolk, each week.