Zamhatch leads the way on day-old chick production

Zambeef subsidiary Zamhatch is the best producer of Cobb500 day-old broiler chicks in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region (EMEA).
The company scooped the Cobb Champion award for best producer for 2018, beating producers from across the region.
The award was received by a delegation of Zamhatch representatives led by Zamhatch General Manager Basil Webber.
When presenting the award, Cobb-Europe Senior Manager for Africa Pieter Oosthuysen commended Zamhatch for consistently producing healthy flocks and growing its production levels.
He said: “The Cobb Champions award targets companies and individual farmers with exceptional performance in chick numbers, hatchability and/or broiler performance within a particular region. Several of our customers have produced performances that have ranked them in the top three across the globe.
Four of the last five Cobb champions have come from Africa, with this year’s award going to Zamhatch while the individual award went to Zamhatch Primary Production Manager Mr Canzius Le Roux.
The goal is to recognise high standards of performance among Cobb customers while encouraging others to step up the quality and quantity of their flocks’ performance to benefit from the genetic potential.
The Cobb500 is considered the world’s most efficient broiler, with a high feed-to-meat conversion ratio and low mortality. Zambia has recorded some of the fastest growth rates in the regional poultry sector owing in part to massive investment aimed at increasing operational capacity.
Zambeef invested US$20 million into the Zamhatch hatchery in Mpongwe and a further US$10 million into setting up the Novatek feed mill operation in Mpongwe, creating additional capacity for its stockfeed operations – also a critical component for the sector.
According to a Poultry Association of Zambia 2017 report, the country recorded a growth rate of 8 per cent in broiler production, from 77.3 million-day-old chicks in 2016, to 83.4 million in 2017. This growth has been spurred by a growing population and increased disposable income.
Speaking at the same event, Zambeef Deputy Managing Director Walter Roodt said that Zamhatch aimed to expand its production further to remain a reliable supplier of day-old-chicks.
“We have plans to grow our production to a point where we can produce a million chicks a week at our Mpongwe farm alone. From there we are delivering to our commercial chicken rearing sites like Zamchick to service our consumers,” he said.
“We are completing the first half of the expansion phase, which is getting to the 500,000 – 600,000 per week – which is something we are very proud of.”
Almost half of Zamhatch chicks are sold into the small scale market, through the Zambeef Macro outlets as well as a network of Novatek agents countrywide.  Th company serves in excess of 15,000 small-scale farmers countrywide. The remaining chicks are supplied into the group’s ZamChick broiler operations, where approximately two thirds of broilers are reared by out-growers and the rest reared at Zambeef’s Huntley operations in Chisamba.
Mr Roodt noted that “The fact that we have branched out and are able to reach all corners of the country – bringing quality chickens bred with the best technology from around the world to Zambian customers through our retail network, is really gratifying.”
“There have been many challenges in getting to this point but I’m proud to say that the team has really pulled through, and through the Cobb Champions award have demonstrated that we can take on anyone in the world.”
He added that such accolades were just some highlights from which Zamhatch would grow their business for the future.
Meanwhile, Mr Webber said that the small scale poultry sector, serving the live bird market, allows Zambeef to deliver on its slogan of “Feeding the Nation” and also to empower Zambians to become self-sufficient and to grow into profitable small and medium scale producers.  He further stated that the increased availability of quality day-old chicks from Zamhatch coupled with easy access to top quality stockfeed from its Novatek sister company, offered a stable business model for Zamhatch as well as its wide client base of farmers.
Zamhatch Hatchery Assistant manager Paulo Mweene said poultry farming had gained popularity as a profitable undertaking among existing and would-be entrepreneurs across Zambia, due to the readily available market, inputs, easily accessible information and policies and institutions working to create a sustainable and competitive sector.
Zamhatch staff with their award for being the best producer of Cobb500 day-old broiler chicks in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region (EMEA). From left, Zambeef Deputy Managing Director Walter Roodt, Cobb-Europe Senior Manager for Africa Pieter Oosthuysen,  Zamhatch Primary Production Manager – Breeding and Hatchery Canzius Le Roux, Hatchery Manager Paulo Mweene, General Manager Poultry Basil Webber, Breeder Manager Moses Tindi and Breeder Foreman Collins Sinyangwe.