; Extension Education for Commercial Poultry Growers on Delmarva | Conferences | AgRisk Library


Conference Name Extension Education for Commercial Poultry Growers on Delmarva

Jennifer Rhodes and Jon Moyle


Jennifer L Rhodes Senor Agent, Agriculture & Natural Resources, University Of Maryland Extension, Centreville, MD, 21617, jrhodes@umd.edu

Jon R. Moyle Agent & Extension Specialist, Poultry, University of Maryland Extension, Salisbury, MD, 21801, jmoyle@umd.edu

Broiler (meat chickens) production is the largest agricultural revenue generator in Maryland. Approximately 35 percent of cash farm income in Maryland is from broiler production. Five counties on the Eastern Shore of Maryland are among the leaders of broiler production in the United States, ranking in the top 100. Contract broiler production is concentrated in eight counties on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. The Delmarva Peninsula ranks in the top ten largest broiler producing areas in the U.S. The success of contract broiler production is directly related to the success of poultry companies and grain farmers located on Delmarva. Delmarva has benefited from the integrators’ expansion to capitalize on increased consumer demand for poultry products. Poultry farmers in the Chesapeake Bay watershed are under the most stringent environmental regulations in the country. These farmers are regulated by the MDA, MDE and the EPA. Therefore, commercial broiler producers on the Eastern Shore need the most up-to-date, research-based information that is available concerning CAFO and Maryland Animal Feeding Operation (MAFO) regulations in order to maintain profitable operations and reduce environmental impairment caused by nitrogen, phosphorous, and sediment that flows into the Chesapeake Bay.

Since 2009 twenty one day workshops educating over 600 growers and supporting business professionals. Impacts results are as follows: 87.5% rated the workshop excellent, • 95% information would be of benefit, 100% reported a moderate or greatly increased in knowledge or skills, 98% had a better understanding of broiler production of composting, 86% better understanding of basic poultry ventilation.