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Protecting poultry welfare during transportation

The transportation of goods around the UK can be a challenge for any business sector, but where the goods being transported are livestock the responsibilities are even greater.

In addition to the general issues around warehouse management and loading, prevention of cargo movement and, of course, the logistics of travelling to the given destination, the law states that animals must be transported in a way that will not cause them injury.

According to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), all farmed animals, including poultry, must be looked after in ways that meet their welfare needs to ensure that they do not experience any unnecessary suffering.

As well as covering the preparation process, such as keeping journey times to a minimum, handling the birds competently, and ensuring there is nothing to cause fear, injury, or suffering to the birds, the law also lays down guidelines for the treatment of the poultry during transportation itself.

And no one is more aware of these complications than poultry trailer manufacturer Panema Trailers. With over 40 years of experience in the commercial vehicle industry, the company specialises in the servicing and repairing of trailers and the production of curtain sided bodies specifically for poultry transportation.

Panema TrailersDarren Anema, Director of Panema Trailers, commented: “All poultry producers we deal with want to ensure that their birds arrive at their destination healthy and stress free so every vehicle we manufacture takes into account the EU laws in the design.

“For example, the loading and unloading facilities need to be constructed in a way that avoids injury or suffering to the birds during that process and, once loaded, there needs to be sufficient floor space and height allowance for the birds to be transported safely and comfortably.”

One crucial component of the vehicle design is the trailer curtains, which can assist greatly in the provision of good welfare conditions and, consequently, legal compliance and Panema Trailers contacted Structure-flex to produce these for them.

Designed specifically with poultry transportation in mind, Structure-flex produced curtains that enable a high level of airflow by incorporating open weave PVC mesh panels running the entire curtain length and an overall curtain drop designed to leave a gap above the floor.

With maximum strength and durability, the curtains are available in a variety of air flow mesh sizes so that they are suitable for transporting all sizes of bird and come in an extensive choice of fabric colours to complement all brands.

Darren said: “We can always rely on Structure-flex to produce the exact curtains we need in for the construction of our trailers and have been working with Structure-flex for the last 25 years so, I suppose, that says it all.”

More information about Structure-flex can be found at: www.structure-flex.co.uk. Follow Structure-flex on Twitter @Structure_flex, Facebook Structure-flex, and YouTube channel Structure-flex. For more information about Panema Trailers, visit: www.panematrailers.co.uk

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