New organic poultry feed rules in force from 1 Jan

New organic rules are set to come into force on 1 January with the organic content of poultry diets rising from 90% to 95%.

The changes are part of the gradual phasing out of the non-organic feed derogation by the EU with 100% organic rations being required from 1 January 2012.

Hampshire poultry feed specialist Humphrey Feeds has already implemented the changes to its rations. Director Martin Humphrey said: “The challenge with this change to organic formulations has been to ensure that the essential amino acids, particularly lysine and methionine are of the correct quantity and ratio, and are of a quality to meet the nutrient and welfare requirements of the bird.

“For the unwary, the change to 95% organic can unbalance the diet, leading to an oversupply of non-limiting or non-essential amino acids which can cause hock burn, pododermatitis and certain behavioural abnormalities.

“We have used all our experience of making organic poultry diets to select raw materials to avoid these issues and ensure the continuity of expected nutritional and performance standards without compromise.

“We strongly believe that fishmeal is an essential ingredient in any 95% diets, so have dropped the eight formulations that do not contain fishmeal from our range as those diets have become unbalanced and nutritionally inadequate.”

He added: “Currently the performance of our organic customers’ flocks matches that of our conventional free-range customers, and this should continue to be the case with our new range of 95% diets.”

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