Can pig viruses travel with feed? And how can feed manufacturers better prepare themselves against viral infections? These and other questions were key during the first of 3 webinars organised by All About Feed and GMP+ International, on October 7th, 2020.
The webinar series with GMP+ International is a warm-up towards the 2nd Global Feed Safety Summit in Berlin, Germany in April 2022.
GMP+ International is an organisation deploying a feed certification scheme, making it easier for companies to contribute to safe feed. In the feed safety certification industry, the organisation has a global market share of 70%. GMP+ International has almost 18,000 certified companies in 87 countries.
In the 1st webinar of the series, the key theme was biosecurity in the feed supply chain – 3 speakers touched on this topic, each from their own perspective.
The first speaker was Prof Dr Wim van der Poel, DVM, senior scientist at Wageningen Bioveterinary Research in the Netherlands. In a pre-recorded video, he introduced a validated 3D collagen model to assess virus safety of casings – and explained how under controlled conditions maximum virus titres can be obtained to measure virus reduction. He said, “There is no need for animal experiments and you can generate risk assessment data for all kinds of different viruses and all kinds of casing products.”
Arguably one of the most debated viruses that could travel with feed is African Swine Fever virus (ASFv). Exactly that virus was the topic for the 2nd speaker, Kobe Lannoo, global category manager pigs at Agrimprove, the functional feed ingredients brand of the Royal Agrifirm Group.
He touched on the situation in Germany, where ASF has been confirmed in the wild boar population since September 2020 and called it a “big game changer, in the sense that Germany is economically a very important country in exporting pork products and this way a lot of surrounding countries will also be affected economically.”
In his presentation he introduced the 100% natural feed mitigator ‘FeedLock’, consisting of fatty acids, which can destroy the envelope of enveloped viruses, like e.g. ASFv, PRRSv or PEDv and thus make viruses harmless. It was tested at Kansas State University to PEDv and to ASFv.
A vast majority of the webinar’s viewers answered ‘yes’ to the poll question of Johan den Hartog, managing director of GMP+ International. He asked the audience whether or not biosecurity should be integrated in the scope of the GMP+ Feed Certification Scheme.
In his presentation, Den Hartog wondered what is the role and responsibility of companies in the feed value chain towards biosecurity. He mentioned an important hazard being Salmonella, which can be well controlled in a feed management systems – but also mentioned important bio-hazards like African Swine Fever and Mad Cow Disease (BSE) – and at which moments in the process and how the produce can be exposed to pathogens.
The next webinar of GMP+ International and All About Feed is planned for February 3, 2021.