Evolution of the Poultry Industry with Georgie Cartanza

On September 10, 2018, the AGRI 130 students had the opportunity to learn about the American poultry industry with Georgie Cartanza, an organic chicken farmer based in Delaware. The lecture provided history of poultry farming in Delaware. The Delaware chicken farming industry started in 1923 when the Steele family ordered 50 chicks and they received 500. Today, DelMarVa (Delaware, Maryland, Virginia) produces 605 billion chickens annually and this industry has grown to meet the demand for meat. Due to the large number of birds being produced in DelMarVa, the industry provides employment opportunities in the area. Additionally, every employment position within the poultry industry creates seven employment opportunities within the surrounding community. Agriculturalists involved in the poultry industry have grown with research of technology to produce the best quality meat, without sacrificing the welfare of the chickens. Poultry raising operations utilize modern technology for feeding, watering, and controlling the temperature of the environment in which the chickens live.My favorite fact from this lecture was that the increase in muscle mass of chickens now versus chickens of the past is due to selective breeding, not hormones and steroids. Selective breeding is when breeders decide which animals have the most desirable traits and breeds the two most desireable individuals in order to receive offspring that  displays those traits. This lecture was very interesting and informational. Thanks to Georgie Cartanza for taking time out of her day to speak to the AGRI 130 students at UD.

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