AVIAGEN has hosted experts from across its Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia region in Edinburgh at its 10th Production Management Breeder School.

The firm welcomed 36 students from 19 countries at the week-long event, which explored bird performance, efficiency, health, and welfare topics.

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Key management subjects included female and male rearing and laying, biosecurity, ventilation, lighting, nutrition, health, and data analysis.

One highlight of the school was an interactive, real-life case study, where students worked collaboratively in small groups.

They applied their newfound knowledge to investigate breeder performance, troubleshoot various challenges, and develop strategies for performance improvement.

Breeder performance

Students presented their strategies at the culmination of the course, with the “green” team receiving the award for the best presentation.

The winning team comprised: Deeb Abu Ja’eb, Lebanon, Ahmed Fettah, Morocco, Samuel Bullock, UK, Tinna Kristjánsdóttir, Iceland, Daria Krużyńska, Poland, and Joel Munisi, Tanzania.

The recipient of the David Butler Award was Nico Jacobs, Farm Manager at Eagles Pride, South Africa, chosen for “exceptional progress and embodiment of qualities such as leadership, teamwork, communication, determination, and passion”.


The award honours the memory of former Aviagen technical director David Butler and his dedication to people in the poultry industry.

Niamh Halley, global technical transfer manager and Aviagen EMEAA School Director, praised the participants.

She said: “The whole School team appreciates the hard work put in by all delegates to absorb information and share knowledge.

“We are all inspired by their passion and enthusiasm and look forward to the contributions they will make to the global poultry industry.”