Simon McKenzie is Sales Director Pacific at Vencomatic Group, he will give a presentation on cage free egg production at the free digital V-connect Exhibition on 23 September (14.00 GMT+7). Simon was invited by Global Food Partners from Singapore.
What objections do you hear against going cage free?
“The main concern for farmers that consider going cage free is bird management, many think that it is very difficult and requires a lot of work, but that is not the case. The cage free systems are easy to work with when you have an understanding of bird behaviour.”
“Sometimes there are also concerns about the return on investment, the economics of cage free. They see it as cost instead of investment, but I think it is just fear of the unknown. I’m going to make the unknown known in my presentation and empower them with the knowledge that they can do it and it’s not that difficult.”
What will your ‘cage free’ presentation contain?
“My presentation will be about the cage free systems, I will focus on rearing systems as an introduction. I will not be doing a promotion talk about Vencomatic Group, but of course I will give examples from our practice. For instance about layout and design of the systems.”
“I was invited to speak because I work at Vencomatic Group and we have a good working relationship with the Global Food Partners. We are going to sign a memorandum of understanding with them and are going to do a cage free project in Indonesia, to promote cage free egg production there and use it as a training centre. The organisation loves Vencomatic, they see us as the only real cage free supplier.”
How important is cage free for you?
“I am really into this nowadays, not from the beginning but I’ve changed. No chicken should live in a cage, it’s just not OK. I’m not going to chain myself to a tree, haha, but I believe the system needs to change. In Australia, where I live, there is still a lot of caged egg production, but consumers are demanding cage free eggs and therefore also the supermarkets. The government is thinking about phasing out cages by 2032 or 2034.”
“I’ve been working at Vencomatic Group for 8 years now, most of my working life I was in poultry. It is a fantastic company, the culture is first class and because they are family owned they care about their employees. The trust is there and they empower you to make decisions yourself. With a very good mission, I am happy to show it on the 23rd.”
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