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Russian firm ramps up self-reliance in chicken flocks, 01.03.17

Cherkizovo has commissioned its first farm for parent chicken flocks in Russia and hopes to finish construction of three more farms in autumn 2017, in order to cut its dependence on imported materials.

Elena Trifonova, Cherkizovo’s press secretary told GlobalMeatNews that, as of 2016, the company had 73% self-sufficiency in hatching eggs and parent flocks. The business imports its flocks from Germany.

She revealed that, following commissioning of a group of poultry farms in Lipetsk Oblast, the company would be able to cut the volume of imports by nearly three times to only 9%, which should bring a positive impact to production costs in the company’s poultry department.

Trifonova explained that Cherkizovo was hoping to gain a higher level of self-sufficiency in hatching eggs and parent flocks, primarily because it has to pay in foreign currency for these products. As such, commissioning of the farms should improve profitability.

In general, Cherkizovo has pumped nearly RUB3 billion (US$50m) into poultry production facilities in Lipetsk Oblast over recent years, including into a hatching unit designed for 220 million eggs, which is one of the largest in Europe.

According to Cherkizovo, the new facilities are equipped only with the most modern machines and designed in accordance with stringent veterinary and sanitary rules, matching European requirements. This is designed to facilitate certification of products for export in the future.

According to the company’s plans, one farm should produce 222,000 head of rearing stock, while the total number of parent flocks at Cherkizovo’s farms, including the four new farms in Lipetsk Oblast, should rise to 2.44 million head.

In addition, in Lipetsk Oblast, Cherkizovo said it had first applied land stabilisation technology. This method is very rarely using on building works in Russia as yet and, in Cherkizovo’s case, it will allow the time required for construction to be reduced by several months.

Imports under threat

According to Russia’s Institute of Agricultural Market Studies, the country is importing up to 700 million hatching eggs per year to satisfy the needs of the country’s poultry industry. Imports of hatching eggs and parent flocks have not been subjected to the Russian food embargo, initiated in August 2014, but could be restricted because of the outbreaks of avian influenza (AI) in Europe.

Russia’s veterinary body Rosselkhoznadzor said it has requested information from the European Commission on the measures taken in regard to the spread of AI in certain European countries . If there is a prompt reply, Rosselkhoznadzor is prepared not to implement restrictions against countries where there is no threat of epizootic problems, according to a statement from the veterinary body.

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