United States

Alltech customers can now buy animal nutrition and crop products through a newly-launched website.

Published in News

As Costco is set to be the first U.S. retailer to integrate its meat supply to the farm level, a new report from CoBank’s Knowledge Exchange Division predicts that other food retailers and foodservice companies may be prompted to reevaluate their own supply chain integration opportunities.

Published in Company News

A major challenge to controlling avian infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) is achieving protection against the numerous types of the virus circulating in commercial poultry.

Published in Health

Turkey Farmers of Canada (TFC) is examining  the details of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), but is concerned turkey farmers and their families will be hurt by the terms of the agreement.

Published in News

With negotiations under the new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) complete, and despite the fact Canada's chicken sector is giving up additional access, chicken farmers are relieved that over a year of uncertainty over the future of the agricultural landscape in Canada is over.

Published in News

Canadian egg farmers are concerned with the outcome of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which is now called the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

Published in News

DATE: September 28, 2018

Published in Disease watch

DATE: September 27, 2018

Published in Disease watch

DATE: September 22, 2018

Published in Disease watch
U.S. food companies kept slaughter plants shut on Monday in southeastern states swamped by Hurricane Florence as catastrophic flooding killed nearly two million chickens, collapsed the walls of at least two hog manure pits, and made stretches of major roads impassable.

Florence, which has dumped up to 36 inches (91 cm) of rain on North Carolina since Thursday, was interrupting supply lines around the state and into neighboring South Carolina.

Meteorologists have warned that the worst is yet to come as rivers rise. North Carolina is a top U.S. producer of poultry, hogs and tobacco. Agriculture contributes $87 billion to the state’s economy, making it the state’s No. 1 industry.

Two North Carolina hog waste pits were structurally damaged, four were inundated with water and seven had discharges, according to the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality.

More than 3,000 lagoons in the state were unaffected, the North Carolina Pork Council said.

When manure pits overflow, there is a risk that water supplies will be contaminated with bacteria like salmonella and e. coli.

Smithfield Foods Inc. runs the world’s biggest hog plant in Tar Heel, North Carolina, near a junction where I-95 traffic has been disrupted. Smithfield closed the plant on Thursday and Friday and an employee said it was still closed on Monday. The company did not respond to requests for comment.

About 1.7 million broiler chickens that independent suppliers were raising for Sanderson Farms Inc., were killed in the floodwaters, the third-largest U.S. poultry producer said on Monday.

Some 30 poultry farms housing about 211,000 chickens each in the area of Lumberton, North Carolina, were isolated by floods, and Sanderson Farms was unable to get feed trucks to them.

“Losses of live inventory could escalate if the company does not regain access to those farms,” Sanderson Farms said in a statement. The company said it was assessing damage from the storm and warned that losses would weigh on quarterly results.

On Monday, the North Carolina Department of Transportation advised against travel in the southern, central and eastern parts of the state, noting that several sections of I-95 and I-40, which are major trucking arteries, were flooded.

The South Carolina Department of transportation said sections of I-95 were closed near the North Carolina line. U.S. railroad operator CSX Corp, which services the area, advised customers that shipments traveling through the I-95 corridor would experience delays. CSX said it was assessing damage from the storm.

“When it comes to moving product, there’s obviously challenges with major routes like I-95, I-75 and I-40 being closed and having to detour around that,” Perdue Farms spokesman Joe Forsthoffer said.

Last week, Perdue Farms shut poultry processing plants in Rockingham, North Carolina, and Dillon, South Carolina, and kept them offline on Monday because of road closures and power outages, Forsthoffer said.

“It just wasn’t safe to ask people to come in,” said Forsthoffer, who added that the privately held chicken producer would monitor road conditions to determine when it can resume slaughtering. He said a small number of poultry died on the company’s farms.

Commodity handler Cargill Inc. closed an animal-feed facility in Roanoke, Virginia, and another facility in Fayetteville, North Carolina, that handles salt, oils and grains, because they are in active flood zones, spokeswoman April Nelson said on Monday.

A third facility in Charlotte, North Carolina, was also closed and due to reopen on Tuesday, she said. On Tuesday, North Carolina Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler will attempt to survey farms from a helicopter, Ashby said.

RELATED: Sanderson Farms provides update on hurricane damage
Published in News

Sanderson Farms, Inc. recently reported that it continues to assess damage to its North Carolina assets and live production infrastructure caused by Hurricane Florence.

The Company is pleased to report that it has still received no report of serious injuries or loss of life among its employees and growers. However, many employees and growers have lost homes and property, and in some cases are being housed in shelters.

Sanderson Farms will continue to do whatever possible to help those who have been displaced. While the company is pleased its employees and growers have remained safe, the company deeply regrets the loss of animals under its care. Although the company and family farmers who care for its chickens did everything possible to prevent the loss of birds, the unprecedented rainfall from Hurricane Florence caused serious flooding that affected the company’s live grow out operations.

“I continue to be pleased that our people remained safe during this catastrophic storm,” said Joe F. Sanderson, Jr., chairman and chief executive officer of Sanderson Farms, Inc. “Those who have been displaced, lost their homes or had their lives disrupted will continue to be in our thoughts and prayers, and we will do whatever we can to help them recover from this storm. Everyone at Sanderson Farms is deeply saddened by the loss of live birds, whose well-being has been entrusted to our care, especially our farmers and live production employees who care for our birds on a daily basis. We take very seriously our responsibility for the well-being of the animals we raise, and we will continue to do everything we can to protect those birds still threatened by rising flood waters.”

As earlier reported, the company did not experience any significant damage to either of its processing facilities, feed mill or hatcheries in North Carolina. The Kinston, North Carolina, processing plant resumed one shift of operations on Tuesday, September 18, 2018.

Many roadways in and around Lumberton and St. Pauls, North Carolina, remain impassable and are closed, and local streams and rivers are expected to crest later this week. The company will resume operations at its St. Pauls processing plant once it is safe for employees to navigate roads and highways.

The company continues to assess the extent of damage to its independent contract farms and the loss of live birds. Current information indicates that 70 broiler houses out of 880 in North Carolina have flooded. Those farms housed 2.1 million chickens. Of that number, 1.35 million were in the company’s St. Pauls, North Carolina, big bird deboning division, and 755,000 birds were associated with the Kinston, North Carolina, tray pack division.

The company has been able to reach most of the farms previously isolated by flood waters to ensure adequate care and feed is available to the chickens on those farms.

Electrical power continues to be restored at a steady pace, and the company believes power will be fully restored to all of its independent farms in short order.

Sanderson Farms, Inc. is engaged in the production, processing, marketing and distribution of fresh, frozen and minimally prepared chicken. 


RELATED: Millions of chickens drown in Florence floodwaters, manure pits damaged

Published in News
DATE: September 13, 2018 

LOCATION: Stanislaus County, California

DETAILS: As part of the pre-slaughter testing and surveillance program for H5/H7 Avian Influenza, H7N3 low pathogenic avian influenza (LPAI) was detected in a commercial meat-type turkey flock in Stanislaus County, California.

Partial HA /NA sequencing determined the H7 and N3 to be a low pathogenic virus of North American wild bird lineage. Further characterization is pending virus recovery. The affected flock of 26,258 birds was depopulated and the carcasses have been rendered.

The USDA Animal Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) are conducting an epidemiological investigation of the event and have increased testing as a result of the detection. Ten additional commercial poultry premises located within the 10km zone are being tested for influenza virus.

SOURCE:
Feather Board Command Centre 
https://mailchi.mp/3cb23d3af043/low-path-ai-in-california-turkey-flock?e=b15fd0a70f
Published in Disease watch
For Aviagen, advancing industry research and training the next generation of industry professionals are core values, and the company continually seeks out opportunities to support these priorities.
Published in Company News
Kemin Industries, a global leader in developing feed ingredients for animal nutrition and health, recently announced the approval for use of chromium propionate in beef and broiler diets in Canada, effective immediately.
Published in Company News
In light of the apparent progress in negotiations to renew the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), La Coop fédérée recently reiterated that the Canadian supply management system should not be used as a bargaining chip in these negotiations.

Agriculture is, in the same way as culture, an exception that contributes to the definition of Quebec and Canadian society. For La Coop fédérée, it is a question of identity, a choice to be made by society, as well as one of innovation.

"In the name of what should we accept the imposition of an American style of agriculture? We must preserve our agriculture, that is on a human scale, sustainable, and the fruit of the labour of families in Quebec and Canada over several generations," concluded Ghislain Gervais, president of La Coop fédérée.

"As I have already mentioned, in an open letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, it is also a question of respecting the values of Quebec and Canadian consumers who are asking for local products," said Ghislain Gervais, during a press conference. "We are concerned about the eventual impact of the abolition of the system we have chosen to ensure the survival of our regions, our family farms, the vitality of our rural life and our farming families who are living on the land."

There is no question of creating a new breach in the supply management system
Emphasizing that it is perfectly legitimate to protect the heritage, agricultural know-how and food security of the country's citizens, Ghislain Gervais indicated that the creation of a new breach in the supply management system would be extremely unfortunate.

The Transpacific Partnership, concluded in 2015, and the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement between Canada and the European Union, have already created gaps in the supply-managed sectors.

"We cannot envision that the Canadian government will accept to make further concessions under NAFTA. Such concessions would likely have a significant financial impact on dairy and poultry producers and contribute to the devitalization of our regions."
Published in News
President Donald Trump said the U.S. is pursuing a new trade accord with Mexico to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement and called on Canada to join the deal soon or risk being left out.

Trump announced the agreement with Mexico in a hastily arranged Oval Office event Monday with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto joining by conference call. Pena Nieto said he is “quite hopeful” Canada would soon be incorporated in the revised agreement, while Trump said that remains to be seen but that he wanted those negotiations to begin quickly.

Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland is leaving a trip in Europe early to travel to Washington for Nafta talks on Tuesday, spokesman Adam Austen said on Monday. Canada and the U.S. are still at odds over some key issues.

The U.S. and Mexico agreed to increase regional automotive content to 75 per cent from the current 62.5 per cent in NAFTA, with 40 per cent to 45 per cent of production by workers earning at least $16 an hour, the U.S. Trade Representative’s office said in an emailed statement. They agreed to review the deal after six years, softening a demand by the U.S. for a clause to kill the pact after five years unless it’s renewed by all parties. Duty-free access for agricultural products will remain in place, USTR said. | For the full story, CLICK HERE
Published in News
Researchers at the University of Iowa have developed a mobile system that can inactivate avian influenza virus.

A significant issue for the poultry industry is the disposal of bird carcasses and manure when they are contaminated with avian influenza virus.

According to the "Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Response Plan" developed by the USDA, there is a clear need for better disposal technology.

One intriguing way forward is to heat the carcasses and manure in a mobile trailer to quickly react to outbreaks before they can spread. The trailer would hold multiple gasifiers, which would be used to heat up the trailer. From there, a conveyor system would take the carcasses and manure through the trailer until the virus is destroyed. The gasifiers use a solid fuel like seed corn or wood chips to provide the energy at very low cost and produce an in-situ charcoal bed that breaks down organic pollutants.

The University of Iowa has more than four years of experience in operating an industrial scale gasifier based on these principles and uses it in conjunction with lab testing and computer modeling to understand and predict general gasification behavior. The focus of this research project was to study the issues involved in trailer gasification and avian influenza virus elimination.

Project #BRU008: Analysis of Poultry Gasification Parameters for Elimination of Avian Flu Exposed Birds and Manure, was conducted by Dr. Albert Ratner, University of Iowa.

The project was recently completed by Ratner and colleagues in the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at the University. They developed the design for a mobile system to heat poultry carcasses and manure to inactivate avian influenza virus. This system could be utilized during an avian influenza outbreak to quickly help eliminate the virus from infected farms and better contain the spread of an outbreak.

For more information, visit: http://www.uspoultry.org/
To veiw the full research report, CLICK HERE
Published in New Technology
What came first, the chicken or the lettuce?

Iowa State University researchers are conducting experiments to determine what advantages may arise from integrating chickens into vegetable production systems.

The researchers must balance a range of concerns, including environmental sustainability, costs and food and animal safety. But Ajay Nair, an associate professor of horticulture and a vegetable production specialist for ISU Extension and Outreach, said finding ways to integrate vegetable and animal production may lead to greater efficiency and healthier soils.

The experiments, currently in their second year, take place at the ISU Horticulture Research Station just north of Ames. The researchers are testing what happens when a flock of broiler chickens lives on a vegetable field for part of the year.

The chickens forage on the plant matter left behind after the vegetables are harvested and fertilize the soil with manure. This integrated approach could reduce off-farm inputs and also provide producers with sustainable crop rotation options.

The researchers are testing three different systems on a half acre of land at the research farm. The first system involves a vegetable crop – one of several varieties of lettuce or broccoli – early in the growing season, followed by the chickens, which are then followed by a cover crop later in the year.

The second system involves the vegetable crop, followed by two months of a cover crop, with the chickens foraging on the land later in the year. The third system is vegetables followed by cover crops, with no chickens.

The experiment involves roughly 40 chickens, which live in four mobile coops that the researchers move every day. Moving the coops around ensures the chickens have access to fresh forage and keeps their manure from concentrating any particular part of the field. An electric fence surrounds the field to keep out predators.

Moriah Bilenky, a graduate assistant in horticulture, checks on the chickens every morning to make sure they have food and water. She also weighs them periodically to collect data on how efficiently they convert food into body mass. The researchers designed the trial to uphold animal health, and Bilenky said she keeps a detailed log on how foraging in the fields impacts the birds’ health and performance.

Nair said the researchers are looking at several facets associated with sustainability. Nitrogen and phosphorous deposited in the soil from the chicken manure could alleviate some of the need for fertilizer application, while working cover crops into the system can prevent the loss of nutrients into waterways. Economics must also factor into the research, he said.

“We might come up with results that really help the soil, but if the system is not economically stable, I doubt growers will be willing to adopt it because it has to work for their bottom line as well,” he said.

The trials also adhere to food safety regulations. For instance, all vegetables are harvested before the chickens are introduced to the fields, ensuring none of the produce is contaminated. The researchers consulted food safety and animal science experts at Iowa State while designing their experiments, and the work undergoes regular IACUC (Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee) inspection and documentation, he said.

The trials remain ongoing, so the researchers aren’t drawing any conclusions yet about the success of their integrated system. The project is currently supported through a SARE (Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education) grant. Nair said he’s seeking additional funding to investigate the animal health and integrated pest management aspects of this research.

So why did the chicken cross the road? It’s too early to tell, but maybe so it could get into the lettuce and pepper fields.
Published in Environment
Alltech presented the 35th Alltech Student Research Manuscript Award to Cristiano Bortoluzzi, a doctoral student at the University of Georgia, during the 107th annual Poultry Science Association (PSA) meeting, held in San Antonio, Texas, on July 23 to 26.

This award is given to a student who is the senior author of an outstanding research manuscript in Poultry Science or The Journal of Applied Poultry Research, and only students awarded Certificates of Excellence for research presentations at an annual PSA meeting can compete.

Bortoluzzi’s winning paper — entitled “Sodium butyrate improved performance while modulating the cecal microbiota and regulating the expression of intestinal immune-related genes of broiler chickens” — evaluated the effect of sodium butyrate (SB) on performance, expression of immune-related genes in the cecal tonsils, and cecal microbiota of broiler chickens when dietary energy and amino acids concentrations were reduced.

The paper results confirmed that SB had positive effects on the productive performance of broilers fed nutritionally reduced diets, partially by modulating the cecal microbiota and exerting immune modulatory effects.

"Alltech is proud to sponsor this award, as innovation is the core of our business," said Dr. Kayla Price, poultry technical manager for Alltech Canada. “We support advancements in the poultry industry and encourage students to publish their research and communicate their discoveries, which can positively influence the future of poultry production."

Cristiano Bortoluzzi is a doctor of veterinary medicine and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in the department of poultry science at the University of Georgia.

He grew up on a farm in southern Brazil with dairy cows, pigs and poultry, so his passion for animal production started when he was young and has influenced his career path.

Bortoluzzi completed several internships in his first year of vet school and found that poultry nutrition and health interested him the most.

Throughout his studies, he was actively involved in research trials, attended scientific meetings and learned about the intestinal health/immune system of broilers and the importance of nutrition.

While working toward his master’s degree, he spent three months working with the United States Department of Agriculture/Agriculture Research Service (USDA/ARS) in Indiana.

In January 2015, he started his Ph.D. in animal science at Purdue University, later moving to the University of Georgia. Bortoluzzi has published 18 papers and will finish his Ph.D. in the fall. He is looking forward to working in and contributing his expertise to the poultry industry.

Alltech has sponsored the Alltech Student Research Manuscript Award since 2000, recognizing young leaders in scientific innovation for their commitment to publishing and sharing their work within the poultry sector.
Published in Researchers
Perdue Farms Inc., one of the world’s biggest producers of organic chicken, wants to bring the premium meat to the masses.

The Salisbury, Maryland-based company will convert its Simply Smart prepared chicken brand to organic later this year, chief marketing officer Eric Christianson said in an interview.

The line, which includes frozen products such as nuggets, tenders and breasts, will be sold at about half the price of comparable organic products at retail, which often go for about $15 a pound, he said. | READ MORE
Published in News
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