Poultrymeat demand drives £7m Aviagen investment in UK

Breeding company Aviagen has announced it will invest just under £7m in its Stratford hatchery in Warwickshire, to meet “continuing high demand” for poultry stock in the UK and internationally.

The investment will fund the construction of a new annex to the existing building that will add 400,000 places to the site’s egg-setting capacity, pushing it past one million eggs a week, Aviagen said.

It is envisioned that the existing building will mainly be given over to hatching great-grandparent and grandparent stock, while the new annex will focus on hatching parent stock.

See also: Poultry sector contributes £3bn to UK economy

Graeme Dear, general manager for Aviagen UK, said demand was increasing across the globe, but “most importantly, locally in the UK”.

“The investment is evidence, firstly, that we are growing our business in the right way, driven by market demand. Secondly, it demonstrates the level of support we receive from our shareholders, who see the value of long-term investments, and thirdly, it reflects the high biosecurity standards within Aviagen and the excellent health status we enjoy in the UK.

“It also acknowledges the skill base of our workforce, as well as the critical logistical operations and opportunities that exist from a UK base,” he added.

Aviagen said in a statement it hoped to have the expansion completed by the middle of next year, subject to planning, and that a number of jobs could be created,

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