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ThePoultrySite Newsletter - 23rd January 2006

Monday 23rd January 2006
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Welcome to this weeks newsletter

This week sees the annual poultry jamboree in Atlanta. For those attending IPE, are located in booth 2505, so please feel free to drop in for a chat, it will be great to see everyone.

*Latest News (link to all this weeks news)

This week we start in Bulgaria, where worry about the risk of contracting bird flu has pushed the price of poultry meat down to two leva a kg (approx US$ 1.24). Shopkeepers across Bulgaria are reporting up to 40% decrease in sales of poultry, and demand for eggs has also dropped. This is in spite of assurances by Bulgaria’s Government of the safety of poultry meat in the country.
     Bulgarian poultry producers fear they will be forced to halve output due to sagging demand, while sales in Romania are down 40%, and in Hungary producers fear the number of chicken reared may fall further.

Turkey accused its neighbors on Friday of hushing up outbreaks of bird flu, complicating the fight against a virus that has killed four Turkish children. "It is unofficially known that this illness exists in our neighboring countries which are ruled by closed regimes, but these countries do not declare this because of their systems," Agriculture Minister Mehdi Eker told a news conference.
     He did not name the countries he had in mind, but Iran and Syria are two likely targets of the criticism. Syria has asked the United Nations for help and will tighten surveillance along its border with Turkey, a FAO official said.

Poultry farmers on the Greek islands near Turkey have begun voluntarily culling their flocks in hopes of preventing a bird flu outbreak from neighboring Turkey.
     Local authorities on Kastellorizo said they decided to start culling their birds independently after residents learned four people in Turkey had died from handling birds infected with the H5N1 avian virus, the Kathimerini news service reported Thursday. Turkey lies to the east of the Greek islands across the Aegean Sea.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has issued a new fact sheet on avian influenza, the first since the disease moved out of Asia into Europe. The document summarizes the course of bird flu in its two-year spread across Eurasia. In regard to the human cases that have appeared in six nations, the fact sheet points out some puzzling unknown factors.
     Human cases of disease have not appeared in commercial poultry enterprises or culling operations, as might be expected. Instead, the majority of cases have stricken previously healthy children and young adults exposed to small flocks kept in domestic settings.
WHO: Bird flu virus survives for days in droppings

International organizations urged donors on Wednesday to open their wallets to support a global fund to combat bird flu at a conference in Beijing the World Bank hopes can raise at least $1.2 billion. The United States responded with a pledge of about $334 million, saying in a statement the money would be mainly in the form of grants and technical assistance.
     The Bank itself has estimated that a pandemic lasting a year could cost the global economy up to $800 billion. Across the globe, millions could die if the H5N1 avian flu virus mutates just enough to pass easily among people. Economies would be crippled for weeks or months.

Hong Kong authorities announced late on Thursday that testing had confirmed the presence of the H5N1 avian influenza virus in a dead bird found about 11km from the border with China. The bird is an oriental magpie robin, that is commonly found in urban and rural areas from China to India to Singapore. The species is not migratory and is often kept as a pet in Hong Kong, raising questions about how the dead bird became infected.
     Thomas Sit, Hong Kong's acting assistant director of agriculture, fisheries and conservation, said that the bird had most likely come in contact with infected migratory waterfowl in a nearby marsh. Agriculture officials have checked all eight poultry farms within a 5km radius of the dead bird and have found no signs of illness, and plan to check the rest of the farms in the territory as well, he said.

Fluxx Breeder from Big Dutchman
Fluxx Breeder from Big Dutchman

In China late last fall, a village official visited Wang Jicheng, a poultry farmer in the northern province of Liaoning, to warn him that chickens in the area were dying by the thousands, probably from bird flu, reports the Post Gazette. Mr. Wang wasn't too worried; a month before, he said, he had paid $225 for 28 bottles of condensed vaccine to protect his chickens and had spent 2 1/2 days injecting each of his 10,000 birds.
     But the day after the official's visit, Mr. Wang saw three-wheeled bicycles ferrying bags of bird carcasses past his farm to a bonfire to be burned. Then his own poultry began to die. Within a few weeks, all of his chickens had died or been slaughtered to prevent the spread of the disease.
     It turns out that Inner Mongolia Biopharmacy Co., the small maker of the avian flu vaccine that Mr. Wang bought, had no license to manufacture the vaccine and was making a low-quality product, according to the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture.

In this weeks China Broiler Market Weekly, eFeedLink report that broiler prices were higher in China in the week ending Jan 18. Prices of fast growth (49 days) broiler registered the sharpest rise while those of medium (70 days) and slow growth (110 days) broilers also recorded modest gains.

In Vietnam, no bird flu outbreak has taken place nationwide since the last one was detected in Hong Dai commune on December 15, 2005, according to the Veterinary Department under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD). At a conference held on January 16, representatives from the MARD, and the Ministries of Health, Transport and Communications, and Trade, expressed their worry over complicated developments of avian flu in European Union (EU) countries, Japan and China.
     Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat said that his ministry will organise a meeting with the diplomatic corps to inform them of Vietnam’s successful control of avian flu, so that foreigners can eat poultry again and feel safe when they are in the country.

DuPont Animal Health Solutions - ANTEC® BIOSENTRY®
DuPont Animal Health Solutions - ANTEC®  BIOSENTRY®

In Indonesia, a hospital is treating a girl infected with the deadly H5N1 avian influenza virus, said Adang Rasmita, an official at Hasan Sadikin Hospital in West Java province. The girl comes from the West Java regency of Indramayu. In the past week, a 13-year-old girl and her younger brother, also residents of Indramayu, died after being infected with the virus, according to an Indonesian laboratory. A World Health Organization laboratory in Hong Kong is yet to confirm this.

As backyard farming to empower small and marginal farmers, the Punjab government is looking at hatching turkeys to boost the rural economy of the state. “The government is planning to start hatching turkeys in the state within the next two months,” the state’s Animal Husbandry Director Baljit Singh Sidhu said. Turkey breeding is potentially more viable than conventional poultry farming, he said.

Germany is poised to follow the Dutch and French examples and require free-range poultry producers to keep their birds indoors to prevent exposure to avian flu, reports FWi. Secretary of state for agriculture Gerd Meuller said the authorities are fully expecting the H5N1 strain of the disease to arrive in Germany in March, when migrating birds start to cross the country again.
     "We are concerned that Turkey is not doing enough to contain the disease and we also believe it is present in north Africa," he told journalists at the Berlin Green Week. Mr Meuller said that, whereas last October the federal government had recommended that birds be housed, this spring it would make it a legal requirement.

By this month-end, the EU will have placed a complete ban on antibiotic growth promoters; the last four antibiotics currently being used - flavophospholipol, monensin sodium, salinomycin sodium and avilamycin - will be completely phased out, reminds eFeedLink.
     As businesses across the supply chain are at various stages of preparation, US-based consulting company Frost & Sullivan predicts that the impact of the ban will only be felt more keenly in the short term. Frost & Sullivan's industry manager Kathy Brownlie said, "In the medium and long term, impacts will be minimal."
     The effects of the ban will vary between countries and regions as well as between livestock sectors. The impact will be more severe on livestock sectors such as the swine and the poultry industries than on others.

Hatchery Automation Systems - Improved quality and reduced costs
Improved quality and reduced costs

In Ireland, a cut in farm production levels as a result of the EU nitrates directive would have severe implications for the agri-food industry and rural areas, it was claimed yesterday. The Agricultural Science Association (ASA), which represents graduates in the agri food sector, warned the directive could drive some farmers out of business.
     It said leading commercial dairy and drystock sectors will be forced to reduce the amount of chemical fertiliser they apply, with a consequent drop in production levels. President James Fitzgerald said the directive, which comes into effect on February 1, flies in the face of the Government's policy on a competitive agri-food industry and contains more stringent provisions than in other EU states.
     "The limitations the directive imposes on nitrogen and phosphorus levels mean up to 30% of pig producers are at grave risk of being put out of business with consequent devastating impact on cereals and compound feed production," he said.

In Northern Ireland, thousands of farmers are having their single farm payments withheld, because they have inadvertently claimed entitlement on the same field as their landlords. The problem has arisen because of Northern Ireland's hybrid system of single farm payment, which includes a land element as well as a historic element, reports FWi.
     This has encouraged landowners to submit claims. But, because of the conacre system of short-term rents, many active producers have also claimed on that land, without conferring with their landowners. The Ulster Farmers' Union says these farmers are facing the threat of very significant financial penalties because of these errors.

In the UK, The NFU’s ruling body has agreed on a ‘vote of no confidence’ in the Rural Payments Agency over its ability to deliver single farm payments. NFU council expressed its frustration with the Rural Payments Agency at its meeting on Tuesday (17 Jan) following impassioned speeches by individual members.
     Traditionally farmers have received their CAP payments between October and January of each year but the switch to the new Single Payment Scheme has meant a delay in processing by the Rural Payments Agency. In October of 2005 Lord Bach assured the NFU that the revised payments would start in February 2006 but the NFU is concerned that this deadline will not be met.

In Australia, Queensland egg producers who have been accused of flooding interstate markets are now calling for compensation. They are blaming the oversupply of eggs on new legislation introduced in all states last year, forcing producers to increase cage sizes and install temperature control equipment.
     Chairman of the Australian Egg Corporation Jeff Ironside, says the new regulations have improved production dramatically and now producers are struggling to break even.

Classic from Hubbard - A Trusted Name with a New Focus
Classic from Hubbard

Company news

Hybro customers in Russia, Serbia, CIS and Montenegro can now access in their own language - as the leading Dutch broiler breeding company adds yet more language options to its popular information website, to serve the needs of customers worldwide. Web-based communications are central to Hybro's marketing strategy, and have become increasingly important to the company for maintaining regular contact and sharing information with the poultry sector globally - a strand of activity that is fundamental to Hybro's open approach to business.

Cobb has expanded its research team with the appointment of two senior molecular biologists Dr Albert Paszek and Dr Ron Okimoto. The appointments come as progress, particularly in identifying gene markers, is bringing ever greater precision to the broiler breeder selection techniques.
     "We are already using biotechnology to accelerate genetic progress in health, food safety and animal welfare," says John Hardiman, vice president for research and development, Cobb-Vantress, Inc. "Some of the earliest benefits will be seen in enhanced disease resistance.

Vostermans Ventilation B.V has launced an new product to easily manage the control of temperature and humidity. With the Humidcon-s it becomes rather simple to support the control of humidity and/or temperature in various types of applications.
     The accurate Humidcon-s can be used for greenhouses, storage rooms, barns for dairy, pork or poultry and/or warehouses, where humidity and/or temperature need to be controlled.

*This Week's Feature Articles

In this regular newsletter section we aim to provide a brief overview of the new Feature articles that have been added to the site over the past week.

We have 4 new features this week

US Poultry Outlook Report - January 2006
By U.S.D.A., Economic Research Service - This article is an extract from the January 2006: Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook Report, highlighting Global Poultry Industry data.

Small Flock Biosecurity
By Carlyle Bennett, Terry Whiting and Glen Duizer, Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives - With the current concerns about diseases such as avian influenza, owners of small flocks can take simple precautions to help prevent an outbreak of disease in their birds.

Understanding and Controlling Ascites
By Frank T. Jones and published by the University of Arkansas's Avian Advice - The ascites has been observed worldwide in fast growing broilers reared under a wide variety of conditions. Ascites is initiated by factors that elevate the blood pressure within arteries supplying the lungs.

The Effect Of Cool Temperature On Broiler Performance
By Brian D. Fairchild, Extension Poultry Scientist and Mike Czarick, Biological Ag. Eng., University of Georgia - Gas prices this winter are at some of the highest that have ever been paid by broiler producers (currently about $1.60 per gallon of propane). As a result some broiler producers may be tempted to trim down house preheating times or lower house brooding temperatures to reduce fuel usage.

Coccivac-B - Coccidiosis vaccine for poultry
Coccivac-B - Coccidiosis vaccine for poultry

That's all for this week!

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