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You are here: HomeNews & EventsHSA funds project to improve chicken welfare in Malawi
HSA funds project to improve chicken welfare in Malawi   feature image

HSA funds project to improve chicken welfare in Malawi

06 December 2023

The Humane Slaughter Association (HSA) has awarded £10,000 of funding to a project aiming to improve chicken welfare during transportation in Malawi. The project aspires to replace the traditional method of transporting chickens upside down whilst suspended from the handlebars of bicycles, with welfare-friendly crates.

The project will be undertaken by the Lilongwe Society for the Protection and Care of Animals (LSPCA) and will build on a survey and a pilot study already conducted by the group. The findings of the survey revealed that groups of up to 50 chickens may be transported upside down on a single bicycle to markets, where the chickens often continue to hang upside down in excessive heat for several hours. Such methods result in broken wings and legs, hyperemic combs, weakness and at least a 10% mortality rate.

In the pilot study, locally-produced, bamboo-woven crates were developed in collaboration with chicken vendors and local craftspeople. The crates proved so popular with local vendors that the LSPCA had to double their trial to accommodate the increased interest. It is hoped that, with the HSA funding, a further 500 chicken vendors will be trained in improved chicken welfare and use the crates for transporting chickens to market. This has the potential to improve the welfare of hundreds of thousands of chickens annually. 

To ensure a consistent supply of crates, the project will train 20 local craftspeople from various areas of Lilongwe to make the crates. These will then be distributed to local chicken vendors who will also be educated about chicken welfare, focusing on appropriate methods for handling, as well as space, food and shelter requirements.

Supporting this project reflects the HSA’s commitment to improving animal welfare beyond the farm gate through research and education globally. For more information about our grant funding, please click here

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