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ThePoultrySite Newsletter - 26th July 2004's Weekly Poultry Industry Newsletter's Weekly Poultry Industry Newsletter
Monday 26th July 2004
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Welcome to this week's newsletter

* News Overview (link to ALL this weeks news)

This week we start in Vietnam, where the lethal strain of bird flu has been detected in 10 of 64 provinces and cities and is suspected of breaking out in another, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development said Monday. More than 50,000 poultry have been infected, culled or have died since April as a result of the H5N1 virus, which has claimed 24 lives in Asia this year.
See also: Vietnam kills bird flu-suspected chickens

In Indonesia, Avian flu has resurfaced in some regions, prompting officials to launch a massive campaign to vaccinate chickens, the government announced Wednesday. A Ministry of Agriculture spokesperson said the government planned to distribute 300 million vaccine doses to poultry farms after reports that a few thousand chickens had died in the eastern part of Java island in July. Indonesia joins Vietnam, China and Thailand, which have also seen a resurgence of bird flu in the past month.
See also: Jakarta starts bird flu vaccinations

In Thailand, the latest outbreak of bird flu has reached two more provinces including the capital Bangkok, bringing the total infected provinces to 15, Xinhuanet reports. Bird flu infection has been confirmed in the capital's three outer districts and a northeastern province. Nine other provinces are on the watch list for suspected cases of bird flu infection.

Thailand has failed to learn critical lessons from its last major bird flu crisis, politicians and health officials warned amid allegations that secrecy and inaction were putting more lives at risk, reports the Straits Times.
     "They should have announced it immediately after the new outbreaks were discovered," Thai Senator Kraisak Choonhavan said. "They are too concerned about exports, when the market will find out anyway," he said.
    The government was criticised in January for allegedly covering up an outbreak for months by insisting initially it was chicken cholera.

In Japan, prosecutors on Friday demanded a one-year prison sentence for the president of a chicken farm operator and a 500,000 yen penalty for his firm for failing to report a bird flu outbreak at a farm in Kyoto Prefecture earlier this year. Hideaki Asada, the 41-year-old president of Asada Nosan Co., pleaded guilty at the Kyoto District Court last month, reports Japan Today.

The FAO has cited poultry producers as the primary cause for the spread of the disease, undermining industry's assertions that it is mainly wild birds that spread the disease. Recent outbreaks of avian influenza in China, Thailand and Viet Nam have led to producers blaming wild birds for the transmission of the disease.
     "Killing wild birds will not help to prevent or control avian influenza outbreaks," said Juan Lubroth of the FAO Animal Health Service. "Wild birds are an important element of the ecosystem and should not be destroyed."

In the US, a video from an animal rights group allegedly showing cruelty at a U.S. poultry plant owned by Pilgrim's Pride Corp. prompted the company on Tuesday to launch an investigation of its workers. PETA said the tape showed workers at a West Virginia Pilgrim's Pride plant ripping off birds' beaks, spitting tobacco into their mouths and eyes, stomping and kicking live chickens, and squeezing them with such force "that the birds expelled feces."

In a press release, KFC Canada has condemned the apparent abuse of chickens at the U.S. processing facility. The particular facility does not supply any of KFC Canada's 750 independently owned and operated restaurants and KFC Canada has a strict zero-tolerance policy to ensure the ethical treatment of animals, the company said.

Tom T. Walker is looking for a breed of geese he hasn’t seen since the 1950s. He thinks there may be a few left in rural Arkansas. Walker is a member of the Society for the Preservation of Poultry Antiquities, a national organization. “We zero in on poultry that has been a part of the American way of life in the past but are becoming extinct" he said. He hopes to do the same with what were commonly called “cotton patch geese” when he was growing up. He recalls the small, gentle geese that farmers put in cotton fields to eat crabgrass and other weeds but wouldn’t bother cotton.

The turkey industry is pushing its protein campaign with statistics comparing the meat's nutritional value with that of beef and chicken. The National Turkey Federation, which represents the majority of turkey industry companies, recently launched a $3 million campaign called "Turkey: The Perfect Protein." The survey showed that more than two-thirds of respondents who are limiting their carbohydrate intake are increasing their consumption of protein and roughly half are paying some attention to protein levels when they buy food.

The newly formed Virginia Poultry Growers Cooperative has signed a letter of intent to purchase a Pilgrim’s Pride turkey processing plant in Hinton, Virginia, according MeatNews. The turkey growers cooperative also plans to purchase a feed mill operated by Pilgrim’s Pride. Last month, Pilgrim’s Pride announced that it was closing the plant leaving approximately 200 local turkey farmers with nowhere to process their turkey’s and nearly 1,300 people without jobs.

The European Commission said EU ministers have agreed to restart imports of some animal products from China after veterinary standards improved. But they will maintain the ban on poultry because of the bird flu outbreak and the ban on pork, beef and dairy products. The EU’s ban on the import of chicken and other poultry products from China remains in place. The Commission still has concerns about the safety of these products - particularly given the recent re-emergence of avian influenza in East Asia.

In Finland, government officials announced Tuesday that exotic Newcastle disease had been discovered on a turkey farm on the country's west coast, Agence France Presse reported. All turkeys on the affected property, which is located about 155 miles northwest of Helsinki, have been slaughtered and destroyed, and the farm will be quarantined and disinfected. The illness, also known as pneumoencephalitis, was discovered during routine testing. It was last seen in Finland in 1996.

* Feature Articles Overview (link to features listings)

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 2 new features this week

Whole soybeans in diets for poultry
By Rosa Lázaro, Gonzalo G. Mateos, M Ángeles Latorre & Javier Piquer and published by the American Soybean Association - Initial studies regarding the use of whole soybeans in animal feeds were carried out on poultry, specifically with broilers and laying hens, during the nineteen sixties. The subject has been reviewed by various people, including Waldroup (1982) and more recently Monari et al. (1996) and Benabdeljelil (1999).

Influence of Whole Wheat and Xylanase on Broiler Performance
By R. M. Engberg, M. S. Hedemann, S. Steenfeldt, and B. B. Jensen, Department of Animal Nutrition and Physiology, Danish Institute of Agricultural Sciences - An experiment was carried out to study the effect of different forms of wheat (airtight silo stored whole wheat, conventionally stored whole wheat, and ground wheat included in pellets) and dietary xylanase addition on production results and gastrointestinal characteristics of broiler chickens.

That's all for this week.

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