Zucami Poultry Equipment - "The green ones"
Going by the slogan "The green ones®", Spain's Zucami Poultry Equipment SLU is a leading company in the field of poultry equipment with 35 years of experience. Their mission is to reinforce "The green ones" brand to provide customers with exceptional products, based on values including business sustainability, respect for the environment, differentiation that brings value, service excellence, and safety in production and work. They manufacture and commercialise different solutions for the intensive poultry farming sector such as automated vertical battery systems for layers, broilers, pullets, breeders, quails etc., as well as aviaries, ventilation elements, and electronic control devices. In an interview with Pedro Sadaba Garraza from Zucami's export department, eFeedLink finds out more about the work the company is doing in these areas.
eFeedLink: Could Zucami share with us more about how it is contributing to animal welfare?
Pedro: All of Zucami's products are developed in order to reach the highest level of animal well-being while maximising the animal's productive capacity. We have a unique design with co-polymer polypropylene plastic dividers. Those side dividers help keep the bird's plumage in better condition compared to mesh or plate dividers. They are resistant to temperature differences and their openings, circular or diamond, contributing to better side ventilation and lower stress on the birds. They are in meadow-green colour, a relaxing colour that has a calming effect behaviour, leading to better zootechnical results. In addition, all models are designed using smooth and circular shapes, creating comfort surfaces, which are pleasant for the birds. Their well-being is our priority.
Our customers supply to the food industry and for example, eggs, as the most affordable animal protein, must have reasonable production costs while being in accordance with market requirements. In line with animal welfare regulations set out by the European Commission, some markets (e.g. the European ones) have been forced to use alternative systems, while others have been adopting similar laws. If we do a quick overview of our product range, you will see a logical evolution from our initial automated battery cages, to the pre-enriched and enriched ranges, and on to the aviary Vision or the automated manure drying system Seconov. Nowadays all ranges coexist and the originals have been improved with new elements and technology.
Besides animal welfare, how does Zucami see itself contributing towards more sustainable poultry production?
I have already mentioned some elements but let me give some details. Battery cage farming systems offer the most predictable supply of eggs, have the lowest carbon footprint and don't require us to access vast tracts of land. Our high quality - we have installations in perfect operation after 20 years - allows for long utility system use without creating frequent waste residues.
Our Seconov manure drying system which uses the birds' own heat energy, allows automatic reduction of the manure percentage of dry matter by 80-85% in 24 hours, thereby avoiding odours and insects and reducing emissions to the atmosphere such as gases derived from ammonia.
I have to point out that the Zucami Environmental Management System is certified in accordance with the international environmental standard UNE-EN-ISO 14001.
Could Zucami also tell us more about product innovation?
Innovation is part of our DNA. Keep in mind we have commercial activity in more than 70 countries with different legal, economic and technological environments so innovation is necessary to fulfil the market needs and address challenges faced by poultry farmers.
Farming can be quite hard and all our solutions improve the lives of farmers, enhance production and protect the welfare of birds. So all our innovations are based on that relationship triangle of farmers, production and welfare.
New trends of alternative systems are also reaching some Asian markets. For that reason, in markets such as South Korea, you can already see our enriched cages (with extra space and items to allow improved natural behaviour for hens). But most of our Asian customers are working with pre-enriched batteries that allow them to achieve a great balance between their current production and being able to easily transform into enriched units if relevant welfare legislation is implemented.
What are the advantages of Zucami's products compared to others in the market?
We have our own factory in Spain and use high quality European materials to create superior products at a competitive price. As previously mentioned we are the only ones adding plastic panels to our cages to maximise utility life of the products, improve bird welfare and, on top of that, reduce installation time. The Zucami vertical battery is designed so that its materials are very much like the Meccano model, requiring no screws, hooks or staples to be assembled.
Please tell us more about Zucami's international presence.
We have sales in more than 70 countries and two strategic lines: on the one hand maintaining our current clients and markets, on the other hand developing or reinforcing some areas of Asia. We are leading the South and Central American market and we have a great market share in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. We already have experience and presence in Asia and Oceania. In Thailand alone we have more than 400 installations, and we have activity in countries such as Japan, South Korea, the Philippines, India, Bangladesh, Australia and Sri Lanka, to mention some of them.
During the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, how has Zucami been supporting customers with its solutions?
I don't want to tempt fate but, until today, we have been lucky and have not been directly affected and all our workers and collaborators are okay. From the very first moment, we took some internal measures of social distancing, deep cleaning, daily temperature control and mandatory mask-wearing, and the results are there. We were just obliged to shut production for two weeks during a strict national lockdown. Therefore, during this pandemic period all our customers have their orders and required service fulfilled on time. Obviously, we miss the face-to-face interaction and personal touch with customers and markets which is so valuable for better mutual knowledge and market understanding. I hope this situation will be over soon and we can return to normal activity.
Could Zucami share with us your future plans?
Our products have evolved according to the market and its needs; in many cases we are trying to predict these changes and bring innovation to them. The central axis on which all our decisions, actions and strategies pivot is our clients and their needs. We will continue working close with the market; developing unique products and showing we are different: We are The Green Ones!
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