H&N Layer Academy 2022, Dubai
Our H&N Layer Academy saw 52 participants altogether from 12 different countries gather at the spacious Convention Center of the Mövenpick Grand Al Bustan in Dubai for an intense two days of collaboration, discussion, and leisure activities.
The event officially started on Monday evening with the welcome dinner in the hotel and Dr. David Cavero, Chief Geneticist H&N International, welcomed everybody. Over food, people could start getting to know one another, and the first conversations could be started in a relaxed and more informal atmosphere.
Tuesday, 1st Day of the Academy
After his welcoming note Dr. David Cavero continued with his first presentation about “Breeding for success” of our customers all around the world.
“Rearing for a period of 100 weeks” by Leon Schouren, H&N International specialist and Key Accountant for Europe, came next. After our first coffee break, we heard Ahmet Akpulat, H&N Nutritionist, speak about Hybrid Feed, a nutritional recommendation for the start of production for helping the layers at this critical moment.
Finally, Dr. Fernando Carrasquer gave insights into maintaining the bird’s health and thus productivity over the last leg of life cycle with his presentation “Immunity for late Production”.
Already on the first day we very gratefully received many questions and continued our discussions also over lunch. A somewhat flawless fit after a very tasty lunch was the insightful presentation about “Phytomolecules as natural concept to optimize performance and gut health in layer hens” delivered by our valued guest speaker Khalil Alrahman Abu Sharkh from EW Nutrition with following Questions and Answer session of the entire H&N Team on stage.
A second break caffeinated everybody for a round trip about KAI, H&Ns farming app for rearing and egg production by Dr. Carrasquer. This was followed by a Trouble Shooting workshop exercise about pathology with three smaller groups trying to solve a case by asking questions and drawing conclusions – and successful they were, after intense interrogation and facilitation in multiple languages by Dr. Abdulrahman Magdy and Dr. Fernando Carrasquer.
Evening Program Tuesday
A City Cruise Tour took us through Dubai by night. We rode in two busses, stopping to see the Kings Palace and from there onwards to the famous Burj al Arab Hotel (it holds seven stars) and then over to the famous artificial island of Palm Jumeirah. There we boarded a ship and, while enjoying dinner, went around the island, which felt like a city of its own with countless skyscrapers of all shapes, illuminated and shining in the night (we got a full moon inclusive!), it was a very colorful experience full of sheer amazement about the potential of the place!
Aboard the ship we also came to see a traditional Tanoura Dancer from Egypt, bringing yet more color on with his illuminated costume that he made spin in most amazing moves. The Tanoura (Tanoura meaning skirt) is a unique dance that is often seen as philosophical or even religious, taking the dancer to new spiritual levels. Many historians say that this dance was first introduced by Turkish philosopher and poet Jalal al-Din al-Rumi. Fun fact: One skirt worn by a Tanoura dancer can weigh up to 15 kilograms, and dancers perform wearing three skirts, if not more. Some of our guests proved to be very good dancers as well as they joined the Tanoura artist. He reappeared for a second performance, now dressed in a horse-costume.
Wednesday, 2nd Day of the Academy
Starting into the second day we had Dr. Fernando Carrasquer at his best again about “Biosecurity” and the reasons behind applying high standards in hygiene. With so many aspects above and below ground, inside and outside the premise it became once clearer that there is much more to the topic than what meets the human eye! For example, seeing one rat signals you have thousands more. And what you do not see at all with the naked eye are the even more venomous villains the size of bacteria, spores, and viruses. That is why “keeping the doors closed is sometimes the best vaccine, because it does not need to be administered”, as Dr. Carrasquer suggested amongst many other effective methods.
Our second valued guest speaker Dr. Husam Bakri, Vaxxinova International, then spoke about “IB in egg production”. He was followed by Dr. Abdulrahman Magdy, H&N International Key Accountant for Middle East and Africa, who reinforced how viruses, especially the H9N2 sweeps around the world, and on which routes it can approach and how co-infections can piggyback.
After a short break, Leon Schouren continued with insights about using “Light programs to control egg size”, followed by Dr. David Cavero discussing more reliable ways and parameters to measure production success in his presentation “FCR versus Cost of Egg production”. The next presenter was Xabier Arbe, Managing Director H&N International, and he spoke about “Diets in egg production”. We then started another round of questions and answers with the entire H&N team of specialists present on stage again to discuss matters more profoundly.
Also, the second day culminated in another workshop in the early afternoon, this time about nutrition. This one was hosted online from Bangkok by Xabier Arbe himself, and again facilitated by our colleagues onsite for translations. What makes these workshops a special experience? They model real work situations when farm staff is coming to conclusions by asking educated questions, benefiting from teamwork and pooling everyone’s knowledge.
Evening Program Wednesday
On the second evening we boarded busses again to drive into a desert camp. There we were enjoying amazing performances of various dancers, amongst them another colorful spinning Tanoura dancer again, and finally a fire artist before we started our Certificate Giving Ceremony under the night sky – and concluded the evening with a group photo and a camel ride.