Overseas poultry producer have given the thumbs up to an enriched colony system designed by a Shropshire egg producer and packer.

Oaklands Farm Eggs recently hosted visitors from Holland, Russia and the Ukraine organised by Hy-Line UK to see their Griffiths/TECNO colony system. Housing birds in 80 bird colony sections, the system is the only one of its kind in the world and is built to the highest standards of welfare.

There are numerous special features built into the new system, including the positioning of perches to allow birds to pass freely underneath, keeping the floor clean and the provision of nest boxes at each end of the cage, with one nest for every 10 birds.

Hoppers are specially designed with blowers to keep eggs free from dust or feathers and the colony floors have been hot dip galvanized and then dipped in plastic, ensuring they’re much kinder to the bird, as well as improving hygiene.

“We’re really proud of the new system,” said Oaklands director Gareth Griffiths. “We have just housed the new system with Hy-Line Variety Browns and have so far seen excellent results.”

One of the visitors, Timofej Kavun who is co-owner of “Three T” a Hy-Line parent stock rearer from Kirghizstan and South Kazakhstan said: “It’s clear Mr Griffiths has invested a lot of time and hard work into the creation of the system.

“He’s been very clever with the features he’s specified and I’m sure they won’t only benefit Oaklands, but have a positive impact on improving all aspects of animal welfare for the future.”