Less knowledge leads to more emotion says USPOULTRY research leader

The less people know about topics such as antibiotics and GMOs, the more emotional they are about them, says USPOULTRY’s vice president of research, Dr John Glisson.

He was speaking during a “Hot Button Topics” session at a recent sustainable agriculture summit held in Atlanta, USA.

In addition to antibiotics and GMOs, Dr Glisson’s list of hot topics included cage-free egg production and slower growing birds.

On the cage-free development, he warned that the US egg industry will have to invest “billions” to produce all of the cage-free eggs that retailers are requesting.

As for the industry accepting slower growing birds, he commented that this was one issue that makes the “least sense” from a sustainability standpoint.

“It is not based on facts, logic or reason,” he said.

The current increase in retailer interest in sourcing slow growing chickens for their customers was also raised during a supply chain session at the event, which included a contribution from Cobb-Vantress’ director of world animal welfare, Dr Kate Barger-Weathers.

Responding to questions concerning how the challenges attached to producing slow growing chickens would affect the supply chain, she said that slow growing chickens were “not a great story in terms of sustainability”.

The summit, as which the poultry industry was well represented, was run by the US-based Stewardship Index for Specialty Crops.

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