Aviagen, one of the world’s leading poultry breeding companies, has expanded its US poultry feedmill facility in Athens, Alabama. The expansion employs the latest biosecurity technologies while also increasing production capacity by more than 30 percent from 24 to 32 tons/hour.
The Athens mill currently produces approximately 1,350 tons of pelletized and crumbled feed per week.
This supplies 115 Aviagen poultry breeding farms in Alabama and the pedigree operation in Tennessee.
Having a dedicated feed mill gives Aviagen complete control over the selection, purchase and processing of feed ingredients to ensure the highest quality and feed biosecurity required for its breeding program.
Aviagen was the first poultry company in the United States to design and build a feedmill to eliminate and prevent recontamination of feed with salmonella and other relevant enteric pathogens.
This elaborate process is an important part of the poultry breeder’s commitment to supply Salmonella free breeding stock to support their customers’ food safety programs.
To ensure pathogen free status the mill operates a “maximum hygiene program” which in addition to the specific processes also limits access to the main processing area to Aviagen staff only.
“These biosecurity investments have helped us eliminate the kind of feed safety concerns that can threaten our poultry breeding population,” said Dan Rollins, director of Aviagen’s Feed Processing Unit.
“For instance, the mill’s new pelletizing line features a Hygieniser, a state-of-the-art system from California Pellet Mill Company (CPM) that thermally treats feed to eliminate Salmonella in the feed. We have also invested in a new liquid coating system that is used for post pellet applications, while completely isolating feed from atmospheric contaminants.”
The new equipment uses significantly less energy than the original system, resulting in less environmental impact and lower production costs.
“This expansion also provides redundancies that allow us to continue feed production in the event of a power loss or other disasters,” added Rollins. “And by implementing the latest Salmonella intervention equipment available, we’re able to protect our poultry breeding stock while reducing our energy consumption.”
Aviagen is a proud member of the Alabama Feed and Grain Association, an associate member of the National Grain and Feed Association (NGFA).