July 2016

Industry and Market Development

Alberta Turkey Producers Bridging the Gap


Photo courtesy of Alberta Turkey Producers

Looking to strengthen Alberta’s turkey industry through improved efficiency, Alberta Turkey Producers (ATP) analyzed the production processes and bird mortality rates of Alberta commercial turkey farms.

Production information was collected for 56 flocks with a minimum of one full production year from each producer. That data was then grouped by cost and bird production type.

“It was important to gather information that represents the operating reality as it currently exists, with our ultimate goal of capturing data from all flocks produced in 2014 and 2015,” shares Cara Prout, ATP Executive Director.

From this analysis, which forms the foundation of a benchmarking tool, the ATP produced a reporting system that allows individual producers to compare detailed elements of their operation against other producers in the province.

“Aligning the industry and narrowing the gaps between the top and bottom producers is important for our industry,” continues Prout. “The information our producers can now access will help them identify potential areas of improvement and, hopefully, increase their production efficiency.”

This updateable and transparent reporting system is guided by three key principles:

· Encourage efficiencies and continuous improvement;

· Achieve full industry endorsement based on understanding and support;

· Follow established valuation methods and processes.

The results identified a large range in provincial mortality rate averages, feed costs and feed conversions for various bird types. This information provides members with a tool to reference when making management decisions to optimize their production including with feed suppliers, in-barn management, and equipment and facilities investments.. ATP plans to use the study results to target future learning initiatives.

“One of ALMA’s priorities is to help industry identify and improve production practices, which increase sector sustainability,” shares Michelle Normand, ALMA Senior Manager, Industry and Market Development. “The benchmarking system will help ATP target extension education that will make a difference in Alberta turkey producers’ management practices.”

For more information, contact Cara at cara@albertaturkey.com.