Poultry production / The Netherlands

The Netherlands

Poultry production in The Netherlands

In 2008 Dutch the total poultry population was approximately 90 million. 7 million poultry at 300 farms are kept for the production of hatching eggs.
For the production of consumption eggs approximately 31 million hens of 18 weeks or older are kept at 1113 farms. Of these farms 81 are biological farms, 176 farms use a system where the hens can go outside the houses, 549 use a scratching system and 307 apply cage housing. Further at 210 farms 11 million hens are kept which are younger than 18 weeks.
For poultry meat production 44,1 million broiler chickens are kept at 700 farms,. Gross domestic production of broilers was 625.000 tonnes (carcass weight).. Gross domestic turkey production was 28.600 tonnes, other poultry production (chicken, ducks, geese, guinea fowl) amounted to 42.800 tonnes (carcass weight).
The Dutch poultry industry is well aware of consumers concern regarding food safety and animal welfare. Therefore an intensive monitoring and control programme with regard to foodborne pathogenic bacteria as Salmonella and Campylobacter is in action. With regard to animal welfare in housing, transport and slaughter the industry is following EU regulations with regard to minimum available space for layers and broilers, total time of transport and rules regarding to handling, stunning and killing at slaughter.