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Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research — Egg Tech Challenge

Award Date 
Grant Amount 
To support a prize for developing technology that can sex-select at scale and replace the need for chick culling.
Topic (focus area) 

Grant investigator: Lewis Bollard

This page was reviewed but not written by the grant investigator. FFAR staff also reviewed this page prior to publication.

The Open Philanthropy Project recommended a grant of up to $3,000,000 to the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR) to support research into, and a prize for, developing a technology that can sex select male chicks at scale in ovo, eliminating the need for chick culling. This funding includes approximately $2,000,000 for FFAR to support research teams to compete for the prize, and approximately $1,000,000 for the prize itself, which will be awarded only if certain conditions are met.

Lewis Bollard, our Program Officer for Farm Animal Welfare, believes this technology will end the acute suffering at death of ~6.5 billion chicks per year and will spare ~29 million hens per year from factory farming entirely because the aborted eggs will replace their output in the market.

This follows our April 2017 grant to FFAR to support research to find solutions to bone fractures in cage-free hens and painful castration in piglets and falls within our focus area of farm animal welfare.