New SPF farm opens in Hungary


In October 2014, the new SPF building for Prophyl KFT – the largest producer of SPF eggs in Hungary – was ceremonially opened by Dr Vitalyos Eszter (EU State Secretary for Development Projects), as witnessed by many national and international guests. Schropper GmbH first became involved with the company in 2012, when it helped to construct a new Fienhage aviary. In the same year, planning work began on the new SPF building for parent stock and laying hens. After viewing and analysing a wide range of cages and aviaries for laying hens, the customer finally decided – thanks to the high level of reliability and marketable eggs in the Easy 100 aviary – to continue its collaboration with Schropper GmbH. Together with the manufacturer, Fienhage, an Easy 100 aviary was developed for parent stock. From the initial planning stage though to realisation, the aviary for 12,000 animals took exactly two years to complete. A total of €3.5 million was invested in the new facility. The customer attached great importance to achieving a reliably high proportion of marketable SPF eggs in the new aviary facility. SPF eggs fetch extremely good prices on the market (more than 1 Euro!). Hence it was imperative that the aviary functioned well and was accepted by the parent stock. The extremely animal-friendly and open aviary system was designed to provide the animals with sufficient feed, water and nests on each level. As very high hygiene standards need to be observed in such facilities, the open design of the aviary – providing a clear field of vision both during operation and during servicing – was immensely important. Special technology for the first aviary for SPF egg production: besides rigorous hygiene procedures, it is vital that any technology used be reliable and well-coordinated. The entire facility (Fienhage Easy 100ET aviary for laying hens) – including the feeding conveyor with silo, the lighting, the egg collection plant with Staalkat Hatchery Packer and integrated scales and screening chamber – is controlled via a Hotraco computer which operates an animal management programme and remote maintenance. In addition, the facility features a sophisticated air conditioning system. Fresh air is supplied to the SPF stock via powerful filter systems. Poultry is just as likely to be contaminated by air as by animal feed. One can assume that viruses and bacteria are primarily carried via dust particles. For this reason, the entire facility was fitted with a balanced pressure ventilation system, whereby the fresh air and exhaust air channels were integrated in the building. In addition, a heating and cooling system was installed. This special air conditioning system is extremely complex. The entire system is networked, visualised and monitored 24/7 by staff. What are SPF eggs, and for what are they used? Only chicken eggs from controlled flocks are used for the cultivation of viruses and other microorganisms. SPF stands for specific-pathogen-free. Vaccines generated with these eggs are vital for keeping stock healthy. Laboratories require uncontaminated eggs for research and testing purposes, and for cultivating viruses and other microorganisms. Chicken eggs with developing embryos are ideal and natural “cultivation vessels” (VIELITZ and LANDGRAF, 1972). To ensure the embryos are the ideal size, the fertilised eggs are placed in special incubators for anything from 5 to 14 days, depending on the intended use. The significance and future of SPF egg production: without doubt, the primary purpose of SPF eggs today is as substrate for the production of vaccines, particularly for poultry. Due to the globalisation of production and the flow of goods, new diseases spread swiftly. Often, the only effective way to fight such diseases is to develop new vaccines (Dr Gerhard Seemann 2005).

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