Male chick killing could end
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Every year, millions of male chicks are killed in the egg industry, because they are unable to lay eggs. They could be used for meat production, were it not for the fast growing breeds, that are used now. These bring forth better hens for egg production, but make their brothers unsuitable to become roast chicken.
The culling of male chicks has been cause for controversial discussion for many years, but now a new Canadian technology proves promising. As CBC News reports, Harry Pelissero, general manager of Egg Farmers Ontario and Michael Ngadi, professor for bio resource engineering, have developed a machine, that can sort out eggs containing male chicks before they are hatched. As soon as they are laid, the machine uses so called hyper-spectral imaging, with which it can distinguish male and female chick-cells.
"We're now at a stage where we're going to take it into commercialization and work on speed," Pelissero said. "And that we hope to have done by spring of next year, and then we can start taking some orders.”
If the machine comes to use on a large scale, the brothers of egg-laying hens could land on a plate after all – as eggs.