Sustainable Agriculture: The Benefits of Biochar as Chicken Bedding Material

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Petey Peterson
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Is Biochar Beneficial for Chickens?

At LOCOAL®, we are dedicated to providing sustainable solutions for a variety of industries, including agriculture. Beginning in 2021, LOCOAL® had the opportunity to work with Tyson Foods, a leading producer of chicken products in the United States, on a 225 day study that explored the potential benefits of using biochar as bedding material for chickens. The study showed promising results and highlighted the potential for biochar to improve chicken health while also reducing the environmental impact in the poultry industry.

How is biochar beneficial for chickens?

Traditionally, chicken bedding material consists of wood shavings or straw, which can be expensive, difficult to handle, limits moisture control, and often require frequent replacement. Biochar, on the other hand, is a cost-effective and sustainable alternative that can offer several benefits. It has a high absorbency rate, which means that it can absorb moisture and toxins to reduce air contaminants and ammonia levels in the chicken house. Additionally, biochar has been shown to reduce the presence of harmful bacteria in the environment, which can lead to healthier chickens and a lower risk of disease transmission.  These impacts not only benefit the health of the poultry, but also the health of the employees.

In the study conducted by Tyson Foods, our company provided biochar as bedding material for a group of chickens, while another control group was given traditional wood shavings. The results showed that the chickens that were housed on biochar had improved foot health, reduced ammonia levels, and a lower incidence of E. Coli bacterial infections. These findings are significant because they demonstrate the potential for biochar to improve animal welfare and reduce the use of antibiotics in the poultry industry.

Moreover, the use of biochar as a bedding material can also have positive environmental impacts. By using biochar as chicken bedding material, Tyson Foods can reduce its carbon footprint and contribute to the fight against climate change.  The poultry manure enhanced biochar will also bring more value and a higher price in the marketplace.

Our collaboration with Tyson Foods on the biochar study for chicken bedding material is an excellent example of how sustainable solutions can benefit both the industry and the environment. At Locoal, we believe in the power of biochar to transform the way we think about waste and create valuable products that benefit society. We are excited to continue working with industry partners to explore the applications of biochar and bring sustainable solutions to a range of sectors. If you are interested in learning more about Rainmaker and how it can benefit your business or community, contact us today.