In the chicken industry, biofilm is a common problem. This thin layer of bacteria adheres to water pipes, which can cause infections and diseases in chickens. To tackle this problem, ultrasound is increasingly being used.
Water plays an important role in the chicken industry. Chickens need enough water daily to grow and stay healthy. For example, chickens drink 1.5 to 2 times their own body weight daily. It is important for chickens to drink enough water because it is necessary for various body functions, such as metabolism and waste removal.
Water consumption within agriculture accounts for about 70% of total water consumption within Belgium. Of this entire water consumption, the chicken industry accounts for 12%. It is important to realise that the chicken industry is a very intensive sector and thus a lot of water is needed to provide all chickens with sufficient water.
Biofilm is a slimy layer of micro-organisms that adhere to surfaces in the drinking system. This layer can multiply rapidly, which can greatly reduce water quality. This can lead to health problems such as diarrhoea and respiratory problems. Drinking water within the chicken industry is 70% contaminated with biofilm.
Ultrasonic radiation is an environmentally friendly and effective way to combat biofilm and improve drinking water quality. One of the biggest benefits of this control method is the reduction in the administration of antibiotics and chemicals. This not only positively affects animal health, but also food safety and the environment.
Treating biofilm with ultrasound also affects animal mortality rates. Research has shown that by improving the quality of drinking water, animals are less susceptible to diseases. As a result, this not only affects animal welfare but also the economic performance of the farm.
Biofilm is an important problem within the chicken industry. Using ultrasonic vibration is an effective method to reduce biofilm and improve drinking water quality.