LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Correcting misconceptions about poultry industry

As a chicken grower, I try to correct the record when I hear people repeat myths about how I raise my birds. Recent letters in the State News have hit the usual high notes, calling farms like mine “toxic time bombs” engaged in “biological warfare.” Here’s the real deal, though: Delaware’s chicken community has made […]

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: The real cost of factory poultry farming

Most people, when they go to the grocery store, pay a price for whatever item they are purchasing at the advertised price. But the people of Sussex County are paying a much higher price than people elsewhere for chickens. That’s because there is a hidden cost in raising the chickens here in Delaware. Many residents […]

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Cleaning up air pollution caused by chicken houses

Recently there has been a massive expansion of building chicken houses in Delaware and in Maryland. Just one of these chicken houses can hold up to 50,000 chickens, and of course 50,000 chickens making waste! In one small area of Sussex County there were about 15 chicken houses installed and put up without the community […]

COMMENTARY: Chicken – The Delmarva job creator hidden in plain sight

Can you imagine an industry that generates more than $900 million in income a year for its employees and contractors; had a successful track record of reducing its environmental footprint on the land; and ensured thousands of acres of cropland on family farms stayed productive and undeveloped? You don’t have to imagine it. That’s Delmarva’s […]

Two charged in raid on suspected Dover meth labs

DOVER — A multi-agency search of two homes with alleged clandestine methamphetamine labs inside yielded two arrests Friday, police said. According to Dover Police Department on Monday, Herbie B. Snyder, 56, and Charles B. Hitchens, 51, were taken into custody without incident at 11 Janes Circle and 1137 Janes Road as authorities executed a search […]

Wary Delaware keeping close eye on avian flu’s march east

DOVER — Delaware officials and poultry owners are bracing for the arrival of 5N2, better known as avian flu.

An outbreak of that specific strain that began in the West at the end of last year is moving east and could arrive in Delaware by the start of fall.

The flu has had a large impact on the Midwest region of the country. The U.S. Agriculture Department reported 48 million birds have been affected, with most of them in the central United States.

While so far the virus has not affected humans, state officials are preparing for a possible outbreak on the Delmarva Peninsula, a major producer of poultry products.

DSU poultry specialist set for series of workshops

DOVER — A poultry specialist at Delaware State University hopes to dispel myths about raising chickens.

She’s planning to present a series of workshops throughout the state to provide information that poultry growers seek.

“I plan to go over general information,” Dr. Brigid McCrea said. “I want to go over some myths and explain why some are and aren’t true.

“People have to come with two questions, either something they’ve seen on the Internet or always wondered about. I will answer them all.”

Avian flu threat puts Delaware poultry industry on ‘high alert’

DOVER — The avian influenza, or HPAI H5, has killed more than 48 million chickens and turkeys in the United States Some agriculture experts fear the problem could get worse. Although the virus hasn’t arrived Delaware yet, it poses a significant threat to the state’s poultry industry. U.S. Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., invited a Delaware […]

Bakers feeling pinch of ‘sky-high’ prices on eggs

DOVER — Fluctuating gasoline prices often grab headlines but the sharp increase in the price of eggs has some consumers — and bakers — squawking.
A dozen large eggs more than doubled in price in a month’s time in June and now cost about a dollar more than they did a year ago.
U.S. Department of Agriculture officials blame reports of avian influenza in the Midwest for creating an egg shortage after the destruction of commercial flocks.
That includes 5.3 million laying hens in Iowa destroyed in April as reported by The Des Moines Register. Flocks are destroyed in hopes that will keep the flu from spreading.

Avian flu no threat to Delaware poultry yet

DOVER — Even though no avian influenza has been reported in Delmarva or even on the East Coast, Delaware is taking no chances.
Since December 2014, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has confirmed several cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza H5 in the Pacific, Central and Mississippi flyways — the paths used by migratory birds. The disease has been found in wild birds, as well as in a few backyard and commercial poultry flocks.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention considers the risk to people to be low and no human cases of these HPAI H5 viruses have been detected in the United States, Canada or internationally.