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ThePoultrySite Newsletter - 30th January 2006

Monday 30th January 2006
Schering-Plough Animal Health    Big Dutchman
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Welcome to this weeks newsletter

For last week's IPE we launched a new section on the site about the control of coccidiosis. CocciForum, the online version of Schering-Plough Animal Health's magazine of the same name, provides timely articles and practical management tips about coccidiosis control and improving bird performance. The publication also features interesting interviews with producers, veterinarians, nutritionists and researchers working in the field of coccidiosis. Readers can download articles or read them on-line. For more detail click the link above right...

*Latest News (link to all this weeks news)

This week we start in Iraq, where a girl has died from the H5N1 form of bird flu, the first known case in the country, officials said today. Shangen Abdul Qader, 15, lived in a Kurdish area near Iraq's border with Turkey and Iran and died on January 17 after contracting a severe lung infection.
     Her hometown, Ranya, is just north of a reservoir that is a stopover for migratory birds from Turkey, where there have been over 20 human cases of bird flu and at least four deaths. Tests were under way to determine if the girl's 50-year-old uncle who died on Friday, was also suffering from the disease.

In Cyprus, EU authorities have confirmed the presence of the deadly H5N1 strain of avian flu in a sample taken from poultry from the north of Cyprus, the EC said yesterday.
     The confirmation was the latest sign that the virus, found mostly in Asia, was spreading westward to infect birds in Europe and humans on the Continent's doorstep. Turkey has reported 21 human cases of H5N1, including 4 deaths, although the World Health Organization has not confirmed the figures.

The UN official in charge of the fight against bird flu cautioned last friday against thinking the virus is becoming less dangerous because of the lower death rate among people in Turkey than was seen in Asia. "We must still maintain utmost vigilance for and preparations for the next human influenza pandemic," David Nabarro said.
     Nabarro said international health experts are studying the virus to determine why the human death rate in Turkey was four people out of 21 cases, while more than half of the people infected in eastern Asia since late 2003 - 81 out of 148 - have died.

In Georgia, a dead chicken showing all the signs of being infected with bird flu has been found in the Khashur region, according to the agriculture ministry. Blood samples from the bird have been sent to the veterinary laboratory in Tbilisi, and results are expected later Thursday. Georgia, which has common borders with Turkey, is vulnerable to the virus. It has been accused by neighbouring governments of suppressing information about the bird flu cases.

In the Ukraine, the possibility of a bird flu pandemic is high, but the country is ready to deal with it, the health minister said Sunday. Novosti reports that, due to bird migratory patterns, Ukraine is among the countries with an increased risk of a bird flu pandemic in the spring, when massive bird populations begin to move.
     The Ukrainian Health Ministry, the Ministry of Emergencies and the State Borderguard Service are urgently developing a coordinated action plan designed to tackle a worst-case scenario.
     The Ukrainian region of Crimea was already hit with a bird flu outbreak in November 2005. Official data indicate laboratory tests have confirmed bird flu cases in 23 locations in Crimea and more than 150,000 domestic fowl have so far been culled in 40 locations around the Crimean peninsula.

Ross Breeders - Generations of innovations
Ross Breeders - Generations of innovations

In a country that has had the highest number of human fatalities from bird flu, the United Nations and the Government of Vietnam launched a media campaign last week to educate the public on how to stop the spread of a disease that has killed 79 people worldwide and led to millions of chickens being slaughtered.
     The campaign comes as Vietnam gears up for the Lunar New Year festival of Tet, a time when the whole country celebrates and when chicken consumption, transport and handling all increase dramatically, according to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

Ignorance, filthy conditions and lack of water risk making traditional Indonesian markets breeding grounds for bird flu in people and poultry, the World Health Organisation said on Friday. The warning comes a day after the death of a 22-year-old Indonesian chicken seller, which local tests showed had been infected with the H5N1 bird flu virus.
     If confirmed, it would bring to 15 the number of people known to have died from bird flu in Indonesia. Five other people have survived infection from a virus that scientists fear could trigger a global pandemic in humans.

The time has come for China to start pulling its weight as a participant in the global response to bird flu, according to an editorial published last Thursday in Nature. China’s response to avian influenza “has been a mixture of secrecy and parsimony that does little to serve the interests of its farmers or its people,” reports Nature.
     “Beijing is currently undertaking some spectacularly expensive preparations for hosting the 2008 Olympics, and its government officials talk of sending a man to the Moon, but when it comes to the more prosaic matter of taking elementary precautions against the palpable economic and public-health risks posed by bird flu, the world’s most ebullient industrial power is pleading poverty.”
     Nature launched the criticism following a meeting of more than 100 nations in Beijing last week. The meeting agreed financial contributions for bird flu counter measures in poor countries. Of the $1.9 billion promised over three years, China would only offer $10 million.

VIROCID - The Global Disinfectant
VIROCID - The Global Disinfectant

In this weeks China Broiler Market Weekly, eFeedLink report that broiler prices were mostly higher in China in the week ending Jan 25. Prices of fast growth (49 days) broilers in Guangdong province and Guangxi Zhuang Region recorded substantial gains.
     Prices of fast growth broilers were sharply higher in Guangdong province and Guangxi Zhuang Region in the run up to Spring Festival (falls on Jan 29). Chicken traders and meat processing plants have continued to buy poultry stocks. Increased demand also lifted prices of yellow feather chickens.

In Thailand, chicken prices have soared amid Chinese Thai spending for the upcoming Chinese New Year due to the mass culling of chickens to contain the bird flu disease in the past few years.
     Chinese Thais have spent less on ceremonial offerings and purchased only neccessary things such as chicken and fruit, claiming the economic slowdown as the main reason, according to a TNA reporter from Yawaraj, Bangkok's Chinatown market district.

The Tennessee Department of Health is working on a plan that would dictate how the state would respond to a pandemic influenza outbreak in response to the particular strain of avian influenza that is making headlines across the globe.
     State epidemiologist Dr. Allen Craig said a draft plan is expected to be ready this spring. In the meantime, the state Health Department is continuing its ongoing monitoring and testing efforts and plans to participate in several emergency exercises throughout the state over the next months.

University of Pittsburgh researchers announced they have genetically engineered an avian flu vaccine from the critical components of the deadly H5N1 virus that completely protected mice and chickens from infection. Avian flu has devastated bird populations in Southeast Asia and Europe and so far has killed more than 80 people.
     Because this vaccine contains a live virus, it may be more immune-activating than avian flu vaccines prepared by traditional methods, say the researchers. Furthermore, because it is grown in cells, it can be produced much more quickly than traditional vaccines, making it an extremely attractive candidate for preventing the spread of the virus in domestic livestock populations and, potentially, in humans, according to the study, published in the Feb 15 issue of the Journal of Virology.

Last week, Delaware Senator Karen Peterson introduced a bill that would provide the most basic humane protection for the state's egg-laying hens: enough room merely to spread their wings, according to The Humane Society of the United States.
     HSUS praised the proposed bill, asserting that egg producers who intensively confine their birds in restrictive battery cages should meet this animal welfare standard. According to Sen. Peterson, "The vast majority of Delaware's chicken farmers don't confine their birds in cages so overcrowded that they can barely move. However, some of our state's egg-laying hens do suffer this cruel and inhumane fate, and this must come to an end."

Reaching new peaks of performance
Reaching new peaks of performance

The Israeli Government will ban the force-feeding of geese in March 2006. As a result of the ban, there is expected to be a shortage of goose liver in Israel, and across Europe, Israel’s chief export market. The ruling provides an opportunity for U.S. suppliers.
     Animal protection organizations in Israel have successfully campaigned for a law against the force-feeding of geese, for the production of goose liver. The Israeli government decided to stop force-feeding of geese. The ban will come into effect in March 2006.

Bacteria are usually viewed as “the enemy” and targeted with potent antibiotics to curb their ability to cause infection, but according to Agricultural Research Service scientists, microbes can be a farmer’s ally when it comes to reducing the risk that antibiotic-containing manure may pose to the environment.
     Storing waste from antibiotic treated animals in a warm, moist place for as long as possible before spreading it onto fields allows beneficial soil microbes an opportunity to act on an antibiotic, before it has the chance to leach into soils and waterways.

Illinois farmers will soon have a new market available to them - selling carbon credits they can earn by adopting a variety of conservation practices.
     The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) and a number of state agencies and private organizations are developing a program that will allow producers and land owners to earn and sell "carbon credits" for using conservation practices, such as no-till and planting grasses and trees.

In Belgium, authorities have decided to temporarily close more farms after they found traces of a carcinogenic chemical in animal feed, authorities said today.
     The food safety agency closed 96 pig and chicken farms on Friday as it traced the source of dioxins found by a Dutch firm last week back to a vat of Belgian pork fat. The fat is mixed with other feed for the livestock industry.
     Over the weekend, it became clear that more feed might be affected and the authorities planned to close an undisclosed number of additional farms that could have used it, Pascal Hoebaert of the food safety agency told VRT network.

Issues facing British pig and poultry keepers, including welfare, increasing energy costs and the effects of bird flu, will be up for debate at the biennial British Pig and Poultry Fair on Tuesday and Wednesday, May 9 and 10, at Stoneleigh Park, Warwickshire.
     "Exhibitor sales are ahead at this stage compared with the last fair in 2004," said Andrea Rutledge of organisers Haymarket Land Events.

Vencomatic - Complete Solutions in Poultry Equipment
Complete Solutions in Poultry Equipment

In Ireland, Teagasc yesterday disclosed that some vital elements of the advice it had provided on the nitrates directive were not fully included in the final statutory instrument. It said that had this happened, it would have allowed pig farmers access to more grassland farms as an outlet for pig slurry and would have allowed for more flexibility for farmers with less intensive systems of production.
     Fine Gael TD Denis Naughten last night said the Environment Minister Dick Roche and Agriculture Minister Mary Coughlan have serious questions to answer over the Teagasc statement. Teagasc said the advice mainly focused on how soil fertility indices and rates of nitrogen and phosphorus use might be applied in the Irish context.

Company news

Since the launch of its innovative, single-stage Smart incubation system last year, Dutch hatchery technology company Pas Reform has secured unprecedented growth in key territories - to such an extent that the company has undertaken its largest-ever recruitment drive to appoint new partners, representatives and agents in 18 countries simultaneously around the world.

Hybro BV has appointed Ms. Jacqueline Thijssen, as assistant to its technical and veterinarian service teams, with effect from January 9, 2006. Jacqueline will report to Ron Meijerhof, Hybro’s senior technical specialist, who says of the appointment: “Jacqueline has been welcomed by a team that is growing worldwide. Hers is a new role – and one in which we will provide her with the training and the working opportunities to become a very capable second line technical advisor by the end of the year.”

As part of a continuing international expansion programme, Dutch hatchery technology company Pas Reform has appointed Mr. Pierre Joris to develop its presence in the French, Belgian and selected francophone African markets for its innovative single-stage Smart incubation system.
     Mr. Joris is well-known in the poultry sector, with a career that spans more than 30 years working at a senior level in sales and marketing roles in the America's, Asia, Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Expect earnings of $2.60 per share for 2006, say DuPont in their latest financial report. Net income for the fourth quarter was $153 million, or $.16 per share, including a $.03 per share significant item benefit from lower than expected tax cost associated with the repatriation of cash under the American Jobs Creation Act of 2004.
     Fourth quarter 2004 net income was $278 million, or $.28 per share, including significant items totaling a net after-tax charge of $93 million, or $.09 per share. See Schedule B for a summary of significant items.

*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 3 new features this week

Nutrient Management: Air and Water Quality Issues
By G.T. Tabler, Poultry Science Department at the University of Arkansas's Avian Advice - The countryside has long been the place to live or retreat to for fresh air and clean water. However, rural America is also home to production agriculture that feed this country and much of the rest of the world.
Infrared Photography Is An Excellent Incubation Diagnostic Tool
By Joseph M. Mauldin, Extension Poultry Scientist, University of Georgia - During the last decade incubation temperature control has become more critical. The problems associated with controlling the temperature of high yielding breeder eggs during incubation are well known to the breeder hatchery industry. Looking at the set point and sensor temperatures is not enough to evaluate the conditions inside the mass of incubating eggs in an incubator.

Litter Quality and Broiler Performance
By Casey W. Ritz, Brian D. Fairchild, and Michael P. Lacy Extension Poultry Scientists, University of Georgia - This article provides an in depth look into how litter conditions significantly influence broiler performance, and ultimately the profits of growers and integrators. Recommendations for proper litter management are given as well as estimated costs associated with poor litter conditions, says Stanley Millar, International Sales - Middle East & Africa, Arbor Acres.

Visit and learn about salmonella in poultry
More on Nobilis Salenvac

That's all for this week!

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