Weaning-to-first service interval in sows fed a gut agility activator

The weaning-to-first service interval is a key driver for improving farrowing rate and increasing litter sizes in subsequent litters. Heat stress is one of the factors that is known to have a significant impact on weaning-to-first service intervals. A gut agility activator was evaluated in commercial sow diets for response in sow reproductive performance post weaning in a hot climate.

Factors affecting the weaning-to-first service interval

Weaning-to-first service interval is economically relevant since it affects the number of non-productive days and hence maintenance cost and sow efficiency. Whereas estrus detection methods and the capabilities of breeding technicians play an important role for weaning-to-first service interval, there are other factors that need careful management and optimization to ensure short weaning-to-first service intervals in sows.

Lactation length for example needs to be optimized, since the shorter the lactation period the more likely the weaning-to-service interval is increased. Adequate feed intake, especially during the first 7 to 10 days of lactation, is key to replenish body reserves which controls subsequent reproductive performance. This is also why many studies have demonstrated that high ambient temperatures prolong weaning-to-first service intervals and reduce pregnancy rates, because they impact sow feed intake in lactation. Hence why ventilation design and supplemental cooling systems in the farrowing room and adequate water intake can also play an important part.

Impact of heat stress on weaning-to-first service interval

Researchers reported weaning-to-first service intervals of 2 to 4 more days in sows experiencing temperatures >35°C versus <30°C. Others showed that a high temperature humidity index (THI > 82) resulted in a greater percentage of gilts and sows with a weaning-to-service interval >8 days. This has been explained to be partly due to a reduction in feed intake in response to high temperatures, particularly during lactation.

More recent studies measured the impact of heat stress in sows on oxidative status at different stages of the reproductive cycle and reported increased oxidative stress in sows around late gestation in sows kept under temperatures above 25°C compared to sows kept at more moderate temperatures. This was associated with a reduction in reproductive performance in the form of a decrease in litter size at birth and litter weaning weights. Increased oxidative stress could however also lead to an increase in inflammatory responses in the sow and an increase in maintenance energy, which again could have an impact on subsequent weaning-to-first service interval.

Effect of Anco FIT on post-weaning sow reproductive performance

The gut agility activator Anco FIT was tested in a sow trial designed to evaluate the product for its impact on annual sow reproductive performance post-weaning on a commercial sow farm in Cordoba, Argentina.

Trial design

Anco FIT was added to sow gestation and lactation diets for a whole year starting in September 2019 on a commercial sow farm with 380 sows. Monthly post weaning KPIs (key performance indicators) for sows, such as weaning-to-first service interval and percent of sows returning to oestrus (when a sow was mated but did not become pregnant), were monitored until August 2020. No other dietary changes made. Performance was compared to that in the previous year, where there was no Anco FIT in the sow diets.

Results

Adding Anco FIT to the sow diets reduced annual means for weaning-to-first service intervals by 31% (11.6 vs 8.0 days) and returns to estrus by 24%. The improvement seen in returns to estrus was particularly marked in the summer months (November to March) of Argentina (10.4% vs 6.3%).

Conclusion

Feeding Anco FIT to sows during gestation and lactation improved key annual post-weaning reproductive performance parameters in sows and the impact was particularly measurable during the hotter summer months in Argentina. Results may to some extent be explained by improving sow lactation feed intake under heat stress as shown in a previous sow lactation trial with Anco FIT.  On the other hand, Anco FIT includes components with antioxidative properties, which might have helped to reduce the negative impact of oxidative stress in sows at crucial stages of the reproductive cycle and make more energy available for reproductive performance.

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Webinar Anmeldung – Der Nutzen von Resilienz in der Milchkuh

Gemeinsam mit unserem Anco FIT Distributor Jahn Ingredients für Deutschland und Schweiz veranstalten wir ein Webinar mit dem Thema

Der Nutzen von Resilienz in der Milchkuh

am 30. Oktober 2020

um 10 Uhr deutsche Zeit

 

Teilnahmebedingungen

Die Teilnahme an diesem online Webinar ist kostenlos. Interessenten sind gebeten sich unter dem vorgegebenen Link anzumelden. Sie erhalten dann per Email einen Link mit dem Sie am Tag der Veranstaltung Zugang zum Webinar erhalten.

Was erwartet Sie bei unserem Webinar

„Schneller, höher, weiter“ ist das Motto von gestern. Heute heißt es „resilienter“, wenn es um genetischen Fortschritt bei der Kuh geht. Aber was macht Resilienz in der Praxis aus, wie kann man es bei der Kuh messen und die Kuh dabei auf dem Betrieb unterstützen?

Unsere Sprecherin Professor Dr. Kerstin-Elisabeth Müller von der Freien Universität Berlin hat sich intensiv mit dem Thema Resilienz bei der Milchkuh beschäftigt und war auch Co-Autorin des Review Papers „Resilienz bei der Milchkuh – gibt es das?“, das 2018 in der Züchtungskunde publiziert wurde.

Resilienz wird derzeit als wichtiges Thema in der Tierhaltung aus unterschiedlichen Perspektiven, wie Genetik, Tiergesundheit und Verhaltensforschung betrachtet. Wir bei Anco beschäftigen uns damit aus der Sicht der Tierernährung, um Lösungen zu entwickeln, die im Betrieb bei der Fütterung eingesetzt werden können, um die Anpassungsfähigkeit und Resilienz im Tier zu unterstützen.

Unser zweiter Sprecher Tierarzt Dr. José Leguizamón von HCS Herdenmanagement wird seine Sicht aus der Praxis auf Milchkuhbetrieben in Deutschland teilen und dabei einige Erfahrungen mit dem Produkt Anco FIT einbringen.

Unsere Sprecher

Prof. Dr. Kerstin-Elisabeth Müller vertritt seit 2003 den Lehrstuhl für innere und chirurgische Wiederkäuerkrankheiten und ist geschäftsführende Direktorin der Klinik für Klauentiere am Fachbereich Veterinärmedizin der Freien Universität Berlin. Ihre Forschungsaktivitäten betreffen die Gebiete Kälbergesundheit, Klauengesundheit und Stoffwechselerkrankungen. Sie stammt aus Rheda-Wiedenbrück und hat in Hannover Veterinärmedizin studiert, wo sie die Fachtierarztprüfung für Rinder abgelegt hat. Professor Dr. Müller hat mehrjährige Erfahrungen in der Rinderklinik an der tierärztlichen Hochschule in Hannover gemacht und hat sich im Department für Nutztiergesundheit an der Universität Utrecht in den Niederlanden besonders mit der Leberverfettung der Milchkuh und in einer PhD-Arbeit mit dem Thema Immunabwehr des Kalbes beschäftigt.

José Leguizamón (Tierarzt -Justus-Liebig-Universität, Gießen-, Tierklinik Dr. Eller, HCS Herdenmanagement GmbH)
Herr José Leguizamón ist ein erfolgreicher Rinder-Tierarzt und Rinder-Ernährungsberater mit über 20 Jahren internationaler Erfahrung, u.a. 3 Jahre Herdenmanager in Pecos, TX, USA (1600 Jersey). Außerdem hat er nach seiner Rückkehr aus den USA für eine Nutreco Tochterfirma (Hendrix-Illesch) in Ostdeutschland als Fütterungsberater gearbeitet.
HCS Herdenmanagement GmbH und die Tierklinik Dr. Eller  betreuen rund 70.000 Kühe in Deutschland und weiteren europäischen Ländern. Herr Leguizamón schult Mitarbeiter von Milchviehbetrieben und Tierärzte in Managementfragen wie Ernährungsstrategien, Fortpflanzung, Eutergesundheit, Präventionsstrategien und Unterstützung beim Kalben.

Relevante Artikel

Dairy farming resilience – three reasons to keep your cows agile

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Anco FIT Farm – weniger Stress durch robustere Tiere

Resilience in dairy cows – feed for adaptability

It is possible to breed for resilience in dairy cows. But is it possible to feed for it? What are the nutritional options?

Farm resilience

Resilience is a concept that acknowledges unpredictability and emphasizes the need to enable adaptability and transformability of systems instead of optimizing them. A farm management approach based on resilience comes up with systems and solutions that can absorb and accommodate future events in whatever unexpected form they may come.  It follows that resources are allocated to strategies that allow reducing the impact of a wide variety of potential unknown events and on identifying emergent opportunities.

Farm resilience is characterized by the ability to:

(1) constantly evolve while protecting against shocks to the system

(2) readjust to adapt to stressors

(3) to implement strategies to take advantage of strengths

and (4) to continually adapt to the current situation (Darnhofer 2009)

Increasing diversity and adaptive capacity of farm systems have been highlighted as key drivers to improve farm resilience and the ability of farms to cope with different types of disruption and stressors.

Farm resilience starts in the cow

In a dairy production system, farm resilience also depends on how well cows can cope with unforeseen challenges in their feed and their environment. As the cow is an integral part of the system, she is expected to be resilient and less sensitive to stressors and sub-optimal circumstances. This is because less resilient cows will have greater fluctuations in their milk performance and quality leading to a decreased cost-effectiveness of dairy rations and a lower likelihood of reaching performance targets. Consequently, fluctuations in farm profits are bound to occur.

Lower resilience in cows can also lead to increased susceptibility of disease which can cause further losses in the long run. More resilient cows put fewer constraints on new farming systems and require fewer drugs, without compromising health or economic efficiency and are less likely to be prematurely culled. This again affects the sustainability and long-term profitability of the dairy sector.

Resilience in dairy cows – advantages

  • more flexibility and adaptive capacity for the farm system
  • greater consistency in milk production
  • greater consistency in milk quality
  • longer production lives, longevity
  • more stable farm incomes
  • fewer treatments and drugs
  • easier to manage cows and reduction in labour time
  • improved cow welfare

Resilience in dairy cows depends on adaptive capacity

Resilience is determined by how the cow responds and adapts to stressors or in other words by her adaptive capacity.  The transition period for instance is a critical time that requires a high capacity to adapt to lactation. But milk production and quality will also depend on how the cow responds to other stressors, such as heat and mycotoxins. Most stressors will provoke stress reactions in the form of reduced feed intake, oxidative stress, inflammatory responses or changes in rumen efficiency. The extent of these stress reactions is determined by the adaptive capacity of the cow, which again determines the impact stressors can have on key performance parameters, health and longevity of the cow and how quickly she recovers.

Gut agility – feeding for adaptive capacity

Nutrition can play an active role in management strategies designed to reduce the impact of stressors on dairy cow well-being and performance. New nutritional concepts, such as gut agility activators, are designed to support the adaptive capacity of dairy cows for improved resilience.

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Dairy farming resilience – 3 reasons to keep your cows agile

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Webinar for poultry farmers in Nigeria – register here

Together with our Anco FIT distributor for Nigeria, Caesar and Jones, we are organizing a free educational webinar for poultry farmers in Nigeria.

Nutritional options for more stable and longer productivity in poultry

25th of September 2020

10am Nigerian time

How to register

This webinar is for free and you can register at the link below to join. We look forward to your active participation.

What to expect

Stability in farm income and adaptive properties are two key factors that have been linked to high resilience of poultry farms in Nigeria.  But what can poultry farmers do to support this cost-effectively by nutritional means to stay competitive and reduce the need of antibiotic growth promotors?

In this webinar Dr. Gwendolyn Jones will be looking at how novel nutritional concepts can support current efforts to increase the adaptive capacity of farms for resilience in Nigerian poultry production. This includes adaptation strategies of poultry farmers to rising temperatures in Africa.

The adoption of existing and new technologies for adapting to climate change and variability is a high priority for many ecological regions in Nigeria. Adaptive capacity is the ability of individuals and communities to adjust to changes, to take advantage of opportunities or to cope with the consequences.

The adaptive capacity of poultry farms starts in the bird. Find out how improving the adaptive capacity of the bird by nutritional means can lead to more stable incomes, maintain higher productivity for longer in laying hens and reduce the need for antibiotic growth promotors in broiler and egg production.

 

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Summer heat stress in cows – better milk quality with Anco FIT

Summer heat stress in cows is known to reduce milk yields and milk quality, reducing the profitability of dairy farms, which is why it is important to find ways to effectively manage it on farms.

Higher producing cows are more sensitive to heat stress

Lactating dairy cows prefer ambient temperatures of between 5 and 25 °C, the “thermoneutral” zone. At ambient temperatures above 26°C, the cow reaches a point where she can no longer cool herself adequately and enters heat stress. Whereas the upper critical limit of the thermoneutral zone for dairy cattle is between 25 °C and 26 °C, the, the temperature-humidity index (THI) is below 72.

Higher producing cows, and thus multiparous cows, are more sensitive to the effects of heat stress compared to lower producing or primiparous cows. As milk yield increases from 35 to 45 kg/d, the heat stress threshold is decreased by 5°C. Recent studies show that modern cows become heat-stressed starting at an average THI of 68 with the levels of stress increasing with increasing THI values.

Higher-producing cows exhibit more signs of heat stress than lower-producing cows because higher-producing cows generate more heat as they eat more feed for higher production. They must get rid of the extra heat generated due to metabolizing more nutrients in the feed. As a result, much of the reduction seen in milk production is due to lower feed intake by the cow. Feed intake in lactating dairy cows starts to decline at around 25°C and drops more rapidly above 30°C.  High producing dairy cows also have a higher metabolic heat load produced through processes such as lactogenesis and milk secretion. Consequently, as milk production and metabolic heat production rise genetically, heat stress will increasingly limit the expression of genetic potential in the future.

The stage in the lactation curve at which the cow experiences heat stress is another important factor for the total lactation yield. Cows are less able to cope with heat stress during early lactation and heat stress has the biggest impact during the first 60 days of lactation. This is because cows are in negative energy balance and make up for the deficit by mobilizing body reserves in this early part of lactation. Catabolic processes are associated with heat production.

Summer heat stress in cows affects milk quality

Milk quality is important for producers to earn monetary bonuses through lower somatic cell counts and increased butterfat/protein, increasing farm profitability.

Controlling somatic cell count (SCC) is a year-round challenge for most dairy producers, and hot humid weather intensifies this challenge. Heat stress generally increases the production of free radicals or reactive oxygen species (ROS). This can lead to oxidative stress, which again has been associated with increased SCC in milk.

Results from studies on the impact of heat stress on milk components are inconsistent, however several studies have reported reduced milk fat and protein levels in response to heat stress. Some researches argue that fat yield decreases could be explained by a decrease in forage intake with low fiber levels, and protein decreases could be attributed to reduced DMI and energy intake when the animal is under heat stress. Other research has shown that milk fat depression during heat stress can be linked to depressed rumen health. Therefore, supporting optimal rumen function by nutritional means may help to reduce the negative impact of heat stress on milk fat.

Strategies to mitigate the negative effects of summer heat stress in cows

Cool water

It is highly important that cows are provided cool water during periods of high temperature. Water is the primary nutrient needed to make milk and cows drink up to 50 percent more water when the temperature-humidity index is above 80. Water should be easily accessible to cows and located in a position such that cows do not have to cross areas of hot sun.

Commercial trial with Anco FIT in cows during summer heat

Gut agility activators, such as Anco FIT and Anco FIT Farm are designed to support the cow to adapt to challenges including heat stress more efficiently by minimising stress reactions including oxidative stress at the cellular level, shifts in the rumen balance and reduced feed intake.

Feedback from a commercial dairy farm with 750 cows in Germany during months where temperatures were recorded above 26°C included that SCC over a period of 3 months were reduced by 13% and milk fat and protein levels increased by 3%. Furthermore, treatments for high SCC were reduced from 5 treatments/week to 1-2 treatments per week. Cows were fed a ration based on corn silage, grass silage, soya and grains, where Anco FIT was added at 30g/cow/day and received a milking concentrate in the milking robot.

It was concluded that feeding Anco FIT to dairy cows during hotter months helped the cows to cope with the heat better and reduce some of the stress reactions that would otherwise impact milk quality and cow wellbeing.

Related articles

How some cows can give heat stress the cold shoulder

How do I calculate the temperature humidity index (THI)?

Heat stress in sows – better lactation performance with Anco FIT

Heat stress in pigs – nutritional interventions that work

Heat stress in sows – Better lactation performance with Anco FIT

Heat stress in sows can compromise lactation performance, as it generally reduces feed intake in sows. The gut agility activator Anco FIT was tested in sow feed for maintaining sow lactation performance despite heat stress during the summer months in Argentina.

Heat stress in sows

In sows, temperatures above 25c can cause heat stress. In lactating sows this is generally associated with reduced feed intake, resulting in reduced milk production, with the knock-on effect on piglet growth. The modern lactating sow is particularly at risk of heat stress, as it has been heavily selected for increased productivity including litter size and litter weaning weight, which comes with increased heat production.

Trial design

The trial was carried out on a commercial farm with 1500 sows in Cordoba, Argentina. The trial period was during the summer months in Argentina from February 29th to 9th of April. Temperatures ranged between 26 and 29C, with a humidity of around 75% and it was expected that sows were experiencing some degree of heat stress.

100 sows were split into 2 groups: 1) control group fed corn-soybean diet, specified to sow requirements in gestation and lactation 2) trial group fed the control diet supplemented with 1 kg of Anco FIT per ton of feed. The trial started two weeks before farrowing and ended with the weaning of pigs at 21 days of lactation.

Cross-fostering was performed within 24 h post-farrowing and litters of piglets were adjusted to 12-13 piglets within the same treatment. The average daily feed intake of the sows during lactation was recorded. Piglets received no creep feed during the lactation period.

Results

Sow feed intake in lactation was significantly increased in Anco FIT vs control sows (5.29kg/d vs 4.39 kg/d, P<0.01). Piglet mortality was significantly reduced in sows fed Anco FIT and litter weight gains significantly increased vs control (42.26kg vs 36.55kg, P<0.01).

Conclusion

Adding Anco FIT to sow diets at 1kg/t increased sow feed intake and lactation performance under summer heat stress in commercial sow farm conditions.

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Dairy farming resilience – 3 reasons to keep your cows agile

The competitive environment for dairy farming requires farm management strategies for resilient production systems that can recover from or adapt to changes in environmental, social or economic conditions. There is probably no time like the current Covid 19 crisis that proves just how important resilience is for production systems.

Resilience applies to the farm, but also to individual animals. Several research programs in different parts of the world are investigating ways of genetically improving resilience in dairy cows. Resilience in the cow is determined by her adaptive capacity, which is the mechanism of the cow that empowers her to cope with internal or external disturbances, stressors or with changes in the environment.

Here are the top reasons for finding ways to Improve the adaptive capacity In dairy cows or In other words to keep dairy cows agile.

1) Consistent milk productivity and quality

Common stress reactions to stressors in the feed and in the environment, are oxidative stress, inflammation at the cellular level, shifts in rumen efficiency and reduction in feed intake. They will all lead to wasted energy and increased maintenance energy or a reduction in energy intake, which again will have consequences for milk yield and quality. Improving the adaptive capacity of dairy cows, will help to reduce the stress reactions In response to challenges and stressors and hence the Impact they can have on milk production and quality. As a result there are less fluctuations and less deviations from expected milk productivity and quality, which also means a more stable Income from cows.

2) Transition management in dairy farming

The transition period is a demanding time for dairy cows and when they fail to adapt physiologically to the demands of calving and the onset of milk production, the resulting metabolic stress leads to transition cow disorders with negative consequences for milk production, reproduction efficiency and longevity. Improving the adaptive capacity in dairy cows can enable the dairy cow to weather the transition period more successfully.

3) Shortages in qualified labour for dairy farming

One of the biggest pain points of dairy farms today is attracting skilled labour. Farmers are finding it difficult to get people to work on farms. It is even more difficult to source domestic labour and many dairy farmers are relying on foreign workers within their workforce. So the Covid 19 crisis and new immigration laws can exacerbate the shortage in qualified labour on dairy farms. A shortage in skilled labour means that caring for cow health and optimal performance becomes more challenging. One solution to this is to breed and manage for resilient cows that are easier to manage. Feeding for improved adaptive capacity to Increase resilience In dairy cows can make a difference to the amount of care a cow requires and thus to the amount of labour needed on the farm.

Nutritional solutions

New nutritional concepts, such as gut agility activators, are designed to support the adaptive capacity and keep animals agile by nutritional means for improved resilience.

The gut agility activator Anco FIT helps the cow to adapt to nutritional and environmental challenges more efficiently by minimising stress reactions such as oxidative stress and reduced feed intake, that would otherwise impact performance and wellbeing of the cow. Heat stress, transition period and mycotoxins are known factors which normally lead to increased oxidative stress and or a reduction in feed intake.

Keep yourself and your cows agile

The safest bet to keep yourself and your cows in the game in the face of unpredictability and change is to support and manage the adaptive capacity of your cows and of yourself. In other words, agility or the ability to adapt to challenges and change is key to longer term success. Staying open to continuous learning and new technologies will help to keep yourself agile. Rethinking how we breed and feed cows to foster resilience will keep cows agile. And there are already great technologies out there that can help monitor the progress we make in this.

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#Internationalpodcastday – Keep agile, keep farming coming soon

Just in time for #Internationalpodcastday 2019 : If you are looking for real stories from farmers across the globe about how they are adapting to the changing face of their industry and embracing new opportunities, then look no further than our brand new podcast Keep Agile, Keep Farming.

Link to Keep Agile Keep Farming Podcast Trailer and episodes

Adapting to change, seizing new opportunities, diversifying and building resilience is key for farmers if they want to thrive and grow their business in today’s challenging farming environment. In other words: in order to keep farming it pays to keep agile.

We want farmers to keep their fingers on the pulse so “Keep agile, keep farming” will help support and inspire them with insightful ideas for farming agility on the go.

We’ll also be tapping into the vast, global bank of experts by inviting people from all backgrounds and levels of experience from around the world, to share their knowledge and vision with us and our listeners.

Continuous learning and an openness to new ideas is key to keeping agile. Our aim is to provide a rich vein of knowledge and practical assistance in an engaging and fun way, so you can learn something new episode by episode to keep agile and build resilience for your farm business.

Subscribe to our monthly Email newsletter to find out the date for the arrival of the first episode of the Keep Agile, Keep Farming podcast. Happy #Internationalpodcastday

Experience with Anco FIT Poultry is growing globally

Experience with Anco FIT Poultry has been growing considerably in the past year, as the product was introduced into more and more countries.

Here is a short summary of what poultry producers have been reporting after applying Anco FIT Poultry to the feed in their production systems. There is also an increased understanding of the mode of action of this gut agility activator from scientific trials.

Anco FIT Poultry in a nutshell

Anco FIT Poultry is a gut agility activator, a feed solution specifically designed to support the adaptive capacity of the bird for greater resilience to stressors in broilers and egg producing hens by natural means. Producers looking for a more consistent performance in response to their feeding programs, to sustain longer production cycles in the laying hen or reduce the use of antibiotic growth promotors by natural means can benefit economically from this.

Deeper understanding of mode of action

We are gaining a much deeper understanding of the mechanisms of action on the gut and cellular level underlying the benefits to performance seen in the bird from scientific trials carried out in collaboration with the Agricultural University of Athens. In this research tissue samples from different segments of the bird’s gut were analyzed to study the relative expression of genes related to antioxidative enzymes and inflammation.

This study revealed that adding Anco FIT Poultry to the diet upregulates gene expression of antioxidative enzymes and down-regulates NF-kB1 expression, which is involved in inflammatory responses, in the gut. Additional analysis carried out in the same study demonstrated that this coincided with increased levels of total antioxidant capacity in the gut, breast and liver tissue.

Experience with Anco FIT Poultry in broiler production

Field trials with Anco FIT Poultry on commercial broiler farms reported higher weights at slaughter and better feed intakes resulting in a higher ROI, particularly when birds were exposed to stressors such as heat or mycotoxins. This implies that Anco FIT Poultry can be applied to broiler diets for more consistency in the cost-effectiveness of diets, despite the possibility of the bird being exposed to stressors. Large broiler integrators saw improved FCR leading to better gains, when stressors were less prevalent.

Experience with Anco FIT Poultry in egg production

Most of the field trials carried out on laying hen farms so far, evaluated the impact of Anco FIT Poultry on egg production post peak lay. Under those circumstances, data consistently revealed improved laying persistency. This means that the egg production in hens fed Anco FIT Poultry had higher egg production for a longer period post peak lay than control animals. This is of considerable value to egg producers trying to maintain egg production over longer laying cycles in hens to reduce the overall cost of egg production in a sustainable way.

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More Easter Eggs with Anco FIT Poultry

Need more Easter Eggs? No problem, hens on Anco FIT Poultry are currently producing more eggs for longer than others. This is what recent commercial trials in laying hens, layer breeders and broiler breeders in Brazil and Slovakia are showing.

Adding Anco FIT Poultry to the diets of hens post peak egg production has repeatedly shown to improve laying persistence and hence an increase in the number of eggs over time under commercial conditions. On top of that some farms have also reported reduced mortality in hens.

Ask your local Anco FIT Poultry distributor for more details and how to apply Anco FIT Poultry to diets of laying hens for greater laying persistence.

Learn more about strategies to improve laying persistence and robustness in laying hens

Want to know what we do with Easter Eggs in Austria? Read the fun facts, traditions and recipe below. Happy Easter to everyone, who celebrates it!

Fun facts about Easter Eggs in Austria

Europe’s largest mountain of Easter Eggs

The Easter Market at the old Freyung in Vienna, Austria piles up the largest mountain of painted Easter Eggs in Europe. The pile totals around 40 000 eggs every year.

World’s oldest Easter Egg

The Kramer family in the Austrian state Burgenland is believed to be in the possession of the world’s oldest Easter Egg. In 2019 this hand-scratched Easter Egg is 112 years old.

People in Lower Austria eat 7 eggs at Easter

People in the Austrian state, Lower Austria, where Anco is based, eat around 7 eggs per person around Easter. In total this means 12 million eggs consumed around Easter. (ORF NOE 2018)

Austrian Easter traditions

The main Austrian Easter traditions revolve around eggs.

Decorating eggshells

Decorating eggshells is a long and popular tradition. The decorated eggshells are then hung up with ribbons onto branches in a vase.

Colouring eggs

Coloured hard-boiled eggs are sold in super markets around Easter time. Here the link to a video showing how 30 000 of these Easter eggs are made per hour in Austria. This normally starts in January every year. But many people still make their own at home by boiling the eggs in food colouring.

Video link: Schrall factory in Würmla prepares for Easter 

The company Schrall is based in Würmla, Lower Austria, about 24 minutes by car from the Anco headquarters in Sankt Pölten.

Egg pecking

2 players select a coloured hard-boiled egg each.
They then knock (peck) the eggs with the tip against each other.
The idea is to crack the opponent’s egg while leaving yours unharmed, allowing you to claim the losing egg for yourself.

Recipe – Austrian Easter Egg spread

If you have too many Easter Eggs, there is also a solution, how to make further use of leftover eggs. It is a perfect opportunity to prepare an egg spread, which can also make a tasty Easter dish. Savoury bread spreads are very popular in Austria and are easily prepared. This Easter Egg spread is prepared within 10 min.

Ingredients:
– 5 cooked eggs
– 1/2 small onion
– 3 tablespoons sour cream
– 50 g/ 18,8 oz crème fraîche (with herbs)
– 1 teaspoon chopped chives
– 1/2 teaspoon mustard
– 1/2 teaspoon
– 1/2 teaspoon organic soup powder (for vegetable stock)
– salt
– pepper

Preparation:
Cut eggs into small cubes. Chop the onion very finely. Mix all the ingredients and season with salt and pepper.