One of the country’s oldest chicken breeders and chick distributors, Charles Stewart Day Old Chicks, has been hailed for its insistence on quality and adhering to international breeding standards.
Speaking during a regional Hy-Line technical seminar held in Mangochi, Douglas Grieve, global technical services director at Hy-Line International, noted that they are pleased with the Charles Stewart partnership.
Hy-Line International is the world’s leading breeder of egg-laying genetics and distributes birds in 120 countries.
Charles Stewart is Hy-Line International’s oldest distributor, a partnership that dates back 52 years.
Said Grieve: “We always select the best distributors to work with and we are pleased for having the opportunity and the pleasure of working with Charles Stewart Day Old Chicks. They have distributed Hy-Line products throughout Africa and they have done a good job for us.”
According to Grieve, the breeds for layers genetics can be competitive, hence the winning difference can be the after sales service.
“So, a seminar such as this enables us to transfer vital information on critical management, on how best to achieve the best production from our birds,” he said.
The international seminar, which pooled participants and experts from the UK, the US, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Mauritius and Zimbabwe, was organised to exchange important information about Hy-Line Brown and Silver Brown breeds.
On his part, Sujeewa Loku Waduge, Hy-Line’s regional business manager for East and Southern Africa, noted that the choice to hold the event in Malawi was arrived at after noting that the business is growing in this part of Africa.
“At Hy-Line International, we hold the view that knowledge is key to the success of the business, which is why together with Charles Stewart, we got together to organise this seminar,” he said.
Charles Stewart Day Old Chicks managing director Alexander Stewart explained that the company has grown from being a small hatchery into an integrated poultry operation with hatcheries, feed mills, commercial layers and broiler operations.
According to Stewart, the seminar provided an excellent opportunity for Charles Stewart and Hy-Line International to interact directly with their customers on a technical level.
“When we market a bird like the Hy-Line, genetics and technologies change. Poultry husbandry practices also change. This is a way of us giving back to our customers, giving up-to-date information to our farmers and distributors.
“We have brought in experts from all around the world. We have tapped into Hy-Line International’s global expertise—technical people, nutritionists and business development managers. This is a way of ensuring that our customers get the best,” he said.
Charles Stewart Day Old Chicks is a family owned business that was founded by Charles Stewart in 1958.
He began operations in Zimbabwe in 1958 and Malawi in 1971.
Initially producing one day old chicks, after a few years, Charles Stewart began exporting day old chicks and breeding stock to some of the neighbouring countries, such as Mozambique, Zambia and Tanzania.
The firm has a staff of slightly over 500 and stocks broiler chicks, layer chicks, stock feeds, Hy-Line breeding stock vaccines and medication apart from providing technical support and business training to their customers.
Charles Stewart, headquartered at Chigumula in Blantyre, boasts of two feed mills, one hatchery, two breeder farms, two layer farms, one broiler farm and 15 sales outlets countrywide.