Cobb 500 Broiler: A Quick Beginner’s Guide

What is the Cobb 500 Broiler? #

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Cobb 500 Broiler
Cobb 500 Broiler (image courtesy of Cobb-Vantress Inc.)

Cobb 500 broiler (chicken) is arguably the world’s most ‘production efficient’ line of meat chickens.

The Cobb 500 broiler is exclusively bred by Cobb-Vantress Inc. (the world’s oldest poultry breeding company).

It’s now a trademarked name ™.

Cobb 500 competitive advantages #

  • Very low feed conversion rate:
    • in other words, the bird generates more meat for every grain of feed provided
  • Excellent growth rate:
  • Converts cheaper low density feed very well:
    • spend less on feed, earn more on meat
  • Consistent performer across climates:
    • does well whatever the weather
  • Optimal productivity:
    • gets you off on the front foot for achieving the ideal balance of low cost, high profit
  • Best uniformity:
    • same consistent results across the flock
  • Consistent processing results:
    • the meat is JUST how the retailers and customer want it

Cobb 500 features (appearance) #

  • White feathers
  • Yellow skin, even as a carcass
  • 95-96% liveability

History and facts #

Fact#1: As of 2020, the Cobb 500 broiler chicken has been traded for 37 years since its introduction to the U.S. market.

Fact#2: The breed was originally competitively bred and selected in England, United Kingdom.

Fact#3: Its demand came about in the 1970’s when major food retailers pressured breeders for chicken meat that is more pleasing to the eye of the consumer. Consumers wanted more fleshy, less boney looking chicken meat.

Fact#4: The appearance of a fuller breast with Cobb 500 is in part achieved by a less pronounced keel bone, achieved by Cobb’s selective breeding program.

Fact#5: the name ‘Cobb 500’ came about following a statement by Robert Cobb Jr. who is quoted as saying that the new bird will be “5-times” better than the Cobb 100 – which at the time was the company’s best seller.

Fact #6: ‘leading food business’ president and 2nd generation owner of Tyson Foods, Don Tyson, on his announcement that his food processing company was now looking to invest in becoming a breeder too, said:

“We’re not selling chicks; we’re not selling eggs. We’re selling meat.”

Fact #7: Don Tyson also echoed consumer demand at the time by saying in relation to his new breeder integration plans:

“We want more meat and less bones.”

Fact#8: a pedigree pipeline had begun when Tyson Foods and Arkansas breeder UpJohn teamed up to breed a line fo birds that would become known, simply as, Cobb 500.

Fact#9: when Tyson Foods bought out 50% of the UpJohn share in the business, the newly formed company became known as Cobb-Vantress Inc. in 1986.

Fact#10: although Tyson Foods was the key customer of Cobb-Vantress Inc. in the early days, other poultry market integrators also followed the trend, like OK Foods.

Fact#11: the rapid growth of the Cobb-Vantress Inc. company was successfully primed by the investment of commercial partners, like OK Foods who facilitated their increased egg production.

Fact#12: Cobb 500 gained international fame following Tyson Foods’ global expansion, bringing the bird to Europe, Africa, Australasia, Japan and Brazil to name a few.

Now, over to you… #

Do you have experience of farming Cobb 500 broilers?

Are you looking to invest in broiler chicks and are considering Cobb 500?

Either way, I’d be interested to hear from you.

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