April 4, 2019
First previewed during the 2018 UEP Annual Meeting, the Egg-Tech Prize was officially announced on March 20. The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR) will award up to $6 million for successfully developing a technology that accurately and rapidly performs in-ovo sexing. Phase I provides seed funding of up to $400,000 per project for new ideas or significant improvements to existing technology. Applications for Phase I are due May 15. Phase II awards up to $4.5 million for a validated working prototype. The program closes in Winter 2021. This project is an incredibly positive step towards achieving a UEP commitment first stated in May 2016:
“United Egg Producers and our egg farmer members support the elimination of day-old male chick culling after hatch for the laying industry. We are aware that there are a number of international research initiatives underway in this area, and we encourage the development of an alternative with the goal of eliminating the culling of day-old male chicks by 2020 or as soon as it is commercially available and economically feasible. The U.S. egg industry is committed to continuing our proud history of advancing excellent welfare practices throughout the supply chain, and a breakthrough in this area will be a welcome development.”
This is an important goal for the egg industry, and UEP encourages members and industry stakeholders to pass along this opportunity to any companies that may be interested. Additional details can be found at Egg Tech prize.
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