Project properties

Title Multipurpose chickens, how can we make them profitable on a biodynamic farm?
Group Farming Systems Ecology
Project type thesis
Credits 24-39
Supervisor(s) Egbert Lantinga
Wytze Nauta
Examiner(s) Pablo Tittonell
Contact info
Begin date 2014/11/01
End date 2019/01/01
Description Biodynamic farming aims to interpret the farm as a living organism with closed cycles, also for the inputs of breeding/livestock. The breeding of chickens needs to become part of the farm. The type of chickens needed for that is a dual purpose chicken, since the killing of the cockerels after hatching is not in line with the principles of BD farming. However, also for BD farming, today the production level poultry is set by the norms of industrial hybrid layers and broilers. A dual purpose chicken, however, will always lay less eggs and the roosters will never meet the growing levels of the extreme broilers, not for the whole animal and for breast meat in particular. Therefore information is needed about how to make these chickens profitable at the farm, focusing on their production of eggs and meat, but maybe also on other functions at the farm, e.g. closing nutrient cycles, cleaning the farmyard from parasites and functions as labor for human care at the farm. Also the market for their products can be a focused point: which strategies are needed to sell the eggs and meat for a higher price?

To analyze the functions and profitability of dual-multipurpose chickens at an organic farm and to develop marketing strategies for the niche products.

• Develop a useful research strategy for collecting information about layers and cockerels, for different functions on the farm and marketing strategies for the products.
• Gather information and evaluate the findings
• Process data into SPSS for statistical analysis
Used skills • Preparation of a detailed proposal
• Conducting research including data collection
• Learning how to work with SPSS
• Interpretation of findings
• Writing an MSc thesis (and preferably a manuscript for a journal) in English