Weekly Overview: Poultry Industry Addresses Some of the Big Issues

GLOBAL - In the last week, we have reported from the recent International Egg Commission conference on topics including welfare, environmental sustainability and feed security, writes Jackie Linden. Other topics in the news this week have been the WTO's failure to agree over food safety, FAO's draft guidelines for the environmental impact of poultry production and a new proposal to deal with food waste.
calendar icon 10 April 2014
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Last week, members of the International Egg Commission (IEC) gathered in Vienna, Austria, to discuss the hot topics affecting the world egg industry at the IEC Business Conference. The event also celebrated the organisation's 50th Anniversary.

Reporting from the conference for ThePoultrySite, Nuria Martínez Herráez covered presentations on a system of rearing male birds for meat, feed additives for improved sustainability, a global grain outlook and the launch of the International Egg Foundation.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) has posted three of its draft guidelines for assessing the environmental impact of global livestock production, including its guidelines for poultry, which are open for public comment until 31 July.

Returning to last week's theme of food safety issues affecting the poultry sector, World Trade Organization talks over an agricultural trade deal have hit another stumbling block as one of the negotiating committees has been unable to reach agreement over a definition for private standards for food safety and animal and plant health.

When the committee met recently week, it also deferred a decision of a mediation procedure designed to avoid legal disputes.

Both issues have been discussed for several years in the Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (SPS) Committee and countries working on compromises had thought that their efforts were close to producing a solution.

A report from the European Union Committee of the UK parliament's House of Lords calls for the re-distribution of food waste to different sections of society or into the animal feed chain, where appropriate, across the EU.

On bird flu news, an outbreak of H5N1 highly pathogenic avian flu in North Korea in March has reportedly spread and involved the culling of tens of thousands of poultry. Taiwan has culled poultry at a farm to prevent the spread of H5N3 bird flu. Five new cases of H7N9 influenza in patients in China have been reported in the last week, while FAO has produced new guidelines for virus surveillance at live bird markets.

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