Several companies announced teaming up with research institutes in August. Both Topigs Norsvin as well as Lallemand Animal Nutrition got involved in interesting projects. That, and many more, you can read in this month’s wrap up of the pig business.
Topigs Norsvin has started a 3-year research project to gain new insights around feed efficiency of finishers. In this project the focus is not just on the individual pig, but also on the group of pigs in a pen. By taking a broader look, new selection traits can be found that could improve feed efficiency. During the project, data will be gathered from over 3,000 finishers. Apart from genotyping and performance, the microbiome will be determined.
The primary aim of the project is to find genetics that give the best performance for a group of pigs in a pen. A 2nd aim is also to find out how the microbiome influences feed efficiency, carcass quality and behaviour. A 3rd aim is to find ways of more accurately finetune feed and genetics. The company teams up with Wageningen University, INRA, Newcastle University and Aarhus University.
Lallemand Animal Nutrition and various other companies in the swine business have become part of a research partnership aimed at studying the influence of intestinal microbiota composition on piglet robustness at weaning. The so-called PigletBiota project, carried out within the context of limited use of antibiotics, has been called the PigletBiota project and is led by the INRA.
The project, which gathers INRA scientists and industries from both animal feeding and pig breeding sectors, aims to study the physiological and genetic bases of piglet sensitivity at weaning, including its microbiota. In practice, around 1,000 animals will be genotyped, clinically surveyed and measured for various traits related to production, immunity and stress.
Hypor, part of Hendrix Genetics, recently exported 270 purebred pigs to distributor Huerta San Martin de Porres in Peru as part of the company’s expansion in Latin America. The great-grandparent (GGP) Landrace and Large White sows and Hypor Maxter and Hypor Magnus boar lines were imported to a nucleus/multiplication facility located south of Lima in April. Through the partnership, the distributor will branch off into the swine industry; it is a subsidiary of poultry company Mills del Marques.
Time for several mergers, take-overs and expansions. MSD Animal Health (‘Merck’ in the US/Canada) aims to buy a new manufacturing facility in Krems an der Donau, Austria with the intention to expand its global vaccine manufacturing capacity. The facility, located centrally in Europe, is owned by Shire and was built in 2002. It will add to the company’s global manufacturing capabilities.
Cargill hopes to acquire the animal feed business of Richmond, VA-based Southern States Cooperative. Under the agreement, Cargill will purchase the assets of Southern States’ feed business, including 7 feed mills and a portfolio of products, brands and customer and supplier relationships. Other segments of Southern States’ business are not part of this transaction.
Netherlands-based feed company Agrifirm will sell its compound feed plant in Drentwede, Lower Saxony, to Hauptgenossenschaft Nord (HaGe). The sale is the result of a strategic reorientation. With selling the plant, Agrifirm anticipates changing market conditions and the increased complexity of the German market. The plant primarily produces pig feeds, which are largely sold within the region. HaGe aims to intensify its operations in the region. It will phase out the production of conventional feeds and focus on the production of organic feeds.
Denmark-based equipment manufacturer Skiold has taken over Farmlog. This company developed and introduced an integrated IT platform for pig producers all over the world. It is a platform which fulfils the industry’s need for management using fast, precise and useful data. Farmlog is a user-friendly cloud base management system including app for iOS and Android as well as a webpage.
A new alliance has been formed between MS Schippers Canada and Farmers Farmacy (a company within the Grand Valley Fortifiers (GVF) group of companies). As from 1 Sept Farmers Farmacy will become the master distributor of a series of MS Schippers’ HyCare focus products (read our recent on-farm feature). Farmers Farmacy recently moved to a 2,100 m2 facility in Ontario, there is capacity to take on the new challenge.
One of the products in the HyCare portfolio, MS Topfoam Fresh, received a recent makeover. The soaking agent received a more profound mode of action and brings a good smell.
Pig production consultancy company PigChamp Pro Europa, based in Segovia, Spain, has created an addition to its business for Latin America, called PigChamp Pro Latino. From its headquarters in Bogotá, Colombia, the company aims to assist the needs of producers and vets for information systems and data analysis. The company will distribute PigChamp software, as well as SIP Economic Management System, Gestal, Ekomille and Farmcontrol.
Animal feed company ForFarmers moved its UK headquarters from Ipswich to one of its feed mill sites at Bury St Edmunds earlier this year. The company employs around 80 staff at the new site. The new building, next to one of its feed mills at an industrial estate, was opened by Yoram Knoop, group chief executive. Feed firm BOCM Pauls, based in Ipswich, was bought by ForFarmers in 2012 and was rebranded in 2014.
On the product side, there were various innovations and approvals to report on. Aurora Pharmaceutical, a US-based animal health company, recently received approval from the US Feed & Drug Authority on its product SwineMate, an altrenogest oral progestin solution for mature gilts. The product SwineMate Solution 0.22% (2.2 mg/ml) is manufactured in Northfield, MN. The approach is used for oestrus synchronisation in sexually mature gilts that have had at least one oestrus cycle.
Thermo Fisher Scientific introduced the Applied Biosystems VetMax PEDv/TGEv/SDCoV kit. This kit is a multiplex real-time PCR test designed to screen for 3 swine coronaviruses in environmental and feed samples. All 3 coronaviruses cause similar clinical symptoms early in the disease, making it impossible to discern which virus is at the root of the infection. The kit allows herd health monitoring for the 3 viruses even with ‘dirty’ environmental samples. In trials, the kit has demonstrated over 97% sensitivity and 100% specificity for all 3 targets.
In addition, at the Safe Pork Conference in Brazil this August, the company presented a new approach for pathogen detection at the slaughterline. It is a meat inspection concept in which blood samples taken at the abattoir from a representative number of animals are tested for antibodies against zoonotic pathogens. Results are given back to the pork producer.
Danish ventilation company Dacs recently introduced its MagFan Plus to the market, which is an evolution of its already existing MagFan range. The main improvement is a more powerful motor. In a press release it stated that the result is ‘the world’s most powerful 57 inch fan while maintaining the ISO5801 verified extreme efficiency and the reliability’.
US-based livestock equipment company Osborne Industries has won the Producer Choice Award for its new FAST Start wean-to-finish feeder at the 2017 World Pork Expo in Des Moines, Iowa, USA. The company markets the feeder as the answer to the problem of efficiently feeding very young pigs, and yet, preventing excessive feed waste that occurs as pigs grow. The feeder combines both gravity-flow feeding with the company’s no-waste, mechanical-flow feed delivery system.
Not new, yet the outcomes are interesting: Trouw Nutrition performed swine trials in China and North America to see if application of feed additives can help when reducing antibiotics. The results show that the use of feed additives leads to an improved FCR, presenting a smart strategy for having healthy and profitable pigs without antibiotic growth promoters.
In the Chinese study, Selko Presan-FX was tested in weaning pigs. Piglets gained 30g more per day during the 1st week after weaning compared to those fed AGP. The overall result was 800g more per piglet at 4 weeks after weaning. In addition, a study in Canada compared the commonly used ionophore-salinomycine with Selko Presan-FX. The result showed that the use of the feed additive did not reduce profitability. The study on finishing pigs found that the feed additive reduced the FCR, at a similar overall cost per kg of gain.
Mycotoxin-related threats to livestock production have remained elevated in most regions of the world over this year’s first 6 months. This conclusion emerged from more than 33,000 analyses conducted on 8,452 finished feed and raw commodity samples sourced from 63 countries from January to June 2017 as part of the Biomin Mycotoxin Survey. Worldwide, deoxynivalenol (DON) and fumonisins (FUM) continue to top the list of most prevalent mycotoxins, found in 81% and 71% of samples, respectively. In addition, countries analysed throughout the Western hemisphere all registered high risk in terms of mycotoxin-related threats to animals. Another trend is that most countries in Asia showed an increased risk of mycotoxin contamination in the 2nd quarter, compared to the 1st quarter of 2017.