In 2017 WATT Global Media celebrates 100 years serving professionals working in global poultry production and processing. To commemorate this significant milestone, WATT Global Media’s editors are creating a series of original forward-looking industry-focused articles that will publish throughout 2017 in WATT Poultry USA, Poultry International, Egg Industry and Industria Avicola. These are planned as in-depth articles focused on exploring developments in key industry sectors that are making an impact on the future of the worldwide poultry industry. Additionally, in January 2018 the WATT 100-Year Anniversary Compendium issue will be published and linked here on this website as a special digital edition. This unique issue will be a keepsake collectible of all “WATT 100: Future of the Poultry Industry” articles.

Future of poultry breeding, balanced genetic selection


Economically important traits will improve as balanced selection efforts result in broilers and layers that perform well and have high welfare under a variety of management and nutritional regimens.

In the developed world the broiler and layer industries have birds with high performance measures for livability, growth rate, feed conversion, yield and other factors. However, activist groups and consumers have a heightened interest in animal welfare and transparency, so poultry producers are being challenged to manage their flocks with that in mind.

Fortunately, poultry breeding companies recognized these consumer and activist trends years ago and began adapting their selection programs to produce genetic stock that is adaptable to multiple housing situations and has improved performance on bird welfare measures.

The movement out of cages for laying hens started in Europe, but is rapidly spreading to North America. Lying hen strains have proven adaptable to cage-free environments because breeders started adding

This article examines other factors in laying hens, such as feather coverage on laying hens and beak shape, and looks at genetic solutions being developed in the broiler industry to produce the bird of tomorrow.

This is the first article in WATT Global Media’s 100-year anniversary series, which looks at key drivers that will shape the future of the worldwide poultry industry.

The full article can be read in January issues of Poultry International, WATTPoultryUSA, and Egg Industry.

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