September showed a lot of activity in the pig business world. Lots of new initiatives are being launched around the globe, including a new pig academy in Denmark, along with a remarkably active pig breeding sector and a series of take-overs and expansions.
Some product news to kick off with: Chemical giant DSM has introduced Hy•D for swine on the US market. The product has already been available in other countries and is a metabolite of vitamin D, 25-OH-D3 that supplements vitamin D3. The company states that the product is consistently and efficiently absorbed by the animal, eliminating the need for conversion in the liver, so optimal vitamin D levels are reached more quickly. The product helps achieve stronger skeletal structures, improved immune system function and better performance.
The company also recently launched its DSM ANH Science News App, a tool created to provide a comprehensive resource on the latest research in the animal nutrition and health industry. It is available to download from the Apple and Google Play stores.
Nor-feed, a French animal nutrition company, recently carried out a meta-analysis to the efficacy of its product Nor-Mite on flies in livestock farms. The product is a natural mineral feed using cloves and lemongrass extracts. Once integrated into feed, repellent components are spread by the animal (via its droppings) and repel the flies from their source of food. The company carried out 7 trials in pig and poultry farms in France and Taiwan. Numbers of flies per trap in these farms decreased having used the in-feed strategy. An analysis yielded that supplementation at 500 ppm reduced flies infestation by 53% on average.
Pig farmers in the Netherlands and Italy are invited to join a gut health trial around a natural feed supplement called Grazexin. During the trial farmers can to use the product to assess benefits during transition periods on their farm. The supplement is produced by InQpharm, part of the Zaluvida group. The product contains Xaluphenol, a naturally derived bio-activated polyphenol, which helps to stop harmful bacteria (and their toxins) attaching to the gut cells and tightening up the gaps between gut cells. In the trial, vets will be asked to complete a pre-trial audit of their client’s farm and provide advice on the basis of the results.
Feed additives producer Kemin has been granted a patent for its antioxidant formulation technology which is the basis for the Paradigmox antioxidant brand, which has been available to animal feed for several years. The antioxidant is free from ethoxyquin, compound which is thought to be responsible for multiple health problems. In a press release, the company said that the newly patented solution provides equal efficacy to ethoxyquin in diverse feed applications and offers additional benefits like improved stability and efficacy in unsaturated vegetable oils.
Proplex DY, a protein source for e.g. pigs, has been approved for use in the Philippines and Vietnam. The product is produced by ADM Animal Nutrition, a division of Archer Daniels Midland and is made from the wet corn milling process, being composed of dried Saccharomyces yeast (non-active yeast), a source of highly digestible amino acids that yields economic and nutritional benefits to swine. To date, the company has over 50 product registrations for the product in over 25 countries.
A group of 14 Danish companies have established a new international gathering place for pig producers, called the Danish Pig Academy. The academy, located in Herning, Denmark, is intended to experience new Danish technology in one showroom. The venue will also host a number of events on a regular basis, for inspiration and updates and it will also supply accommodation in its newly renovated guest house. Prominent players involved in the Danish Pig Academy include Aco Funki, Breeders of Denmark, Munters, Skov and Vitfoss.
Yunnan Shennong Agricultural Industry Group has recently imported more than 1,000 elite, high-health great grandparent (GGP) from PIC, part of Genus. The shipment of elite pigs is noteworthy in PIC China’s partnership with Shennong, a progressive Chinese integrated pork producer. The GGP gilts were transported from PIC’s genetic nucleus facilities in North America. The animals completed a 45-day period of quarantine before being integrated into Shennong’s nucleus herds. This move means PIC will have extended capacity to produce genetics for its customers across China and that Shennong will be able to grow its own commercial pyramid. PIC and Shennong have worked together for more than 13 years.
Topigs Norsvin is investing €10 million in a new testing facility in Manitoba, Canada. The new testing facility will test boars of the Z-line (dam) and Tempo (sire). The station in Canada will be a copy of the test station in Norway, and will just like that station be equipped with a CT scanner. The facility will become operational in summer 2018 and will be the central point of a new breeding structure in Canada. Each year, 7 existing Specific Pathogen Free (SPF) nucleus farms will deliver boars aged 4-6 weeks to special isolation nurseries.
Hypor, a pig breeder and part of Hendrix Genetics, will build a new facility in Sichamps, France with 72 Nedap Pig Performance testing (PPT) stations to track the daily growth and feed intake of the Hypor Maxter and Magnus boar. The new facility will begin operating in October 2017. The new facility will increase the number of pigs tested with feeding stations by 3,000 pigs annually and increase the total number to be tested by around 6,400 head. Each station will have the capacity to measure the daily feed intake and weight gain of 14 pigs.
More news on Hypor, as it also signed a cooperation agreement with ultrasound technology company, Biotronics, in the research testing of the new BioQStation to improve the speed and animal safety of ultrasound scanning. The concept is a new product under development that integrates the BioSoft Toolbox II with BioQscan autoprocessing technology and the BioPigLift into a station for pig immobilisation, weighing, scanning and auto processing for backfat depth, loin muscle, and intramuscular fat.
Apart from pig breeders, many other companies were active on the market too. French-based feed additives company Olmix, specialised in natural algae-sourced solutions, acquired PRP Technologies, a specialist in biostimulants for agroecology. PRP Technologies is known throughout Europe for stimulator products for animals and plants. In a press release, it stated that the partnership offers benefits for the companies’ activities concerning products for animals, plants and humans. In nutrition and animal health, the ranges are very complementary and merge under the entity Olmix Animal Care.
Greengage Lighting, a UK-based light supplier for livestock farming, acquired Isotera, designers and manufacturers of power and control systems for LED lighting. Isotera, based at St Neots in Cambridgeshire, UK developed the iPower inductive energy technology that reduces the installation cost to compensate for the increased outlay of LED lighting. Edinburgh-based Greengage Lighting was founded in 2008 and provides modern lighting and sensors to improve pig and poultry productivity and welfare.
German-based feed additive specialist Dr Eckel opened its international headquarters in Bangkok on 18 September. The feed additive specialist celebrated the official company inauguration of Dr Eckel Animal Nutrition (Thailand) and its move to the new offices. The company will focus on the Asian markets. The company used to serve the Asian feed industry from a representative office in Bangkok for years, and now it aims to increase its exposure through the headquarters and the German-Thai subsidiary.
The Polish Competition Authority has approved the acquisition of the compound feed company Bacutil by Netherlands-based Royal Agrifirm Group. The intended acquisition was already announced in June. With the approval, Agrifirm now has 5 production sites in Poland, located in Szamotuły, Topola Wielka, Margońska Wieś, Płośnica and Bedlno Radzyńskie, achieving national coverage in all major agricultural areas.
Animal nutrition company Royal De Heus announced plans to construct a new ‘Pig Nutrition Centre’ in Beuningen, near Nijmegen, the Netherlands. On the site, an existing pig farm will be rebuilt to provide room for 250 sows with their piglets, breeding sows and 900 finishers. This set-up allows feed research on all animal groups, and across all animal groups, in order to determine long-term effects. The design also includes viewing corridors from which the animals can be observed from different angles. The centre reflects the company’s emphasis on enabling healthy pigs to grow with as little impact on environment and society as possible.
Feed additive producer Biomin aims to open a local business unit in Mexico. The new unit will be based in Guadalajara, Mexico and will be led by Jose Buitron. The local presence will allow the company to build and enhance relationships with opinion leaders and research organisations. Until now, Biomin had been serving Mexico through its distributor Inusa. Both companies will work together to ensure a seamless handover.
French animal nutrition company Neovia, part of Invivo, aims to acquire a production site in Quy Nhon, in Binh Dinh province, central Vietnam. The project will help the company increase its production capacity by 50,000 tonnes/year. In addition to this major project, the company aims to build a new factory in Ha Nam, create a new production line at the Dong Thap site, and expand its storage capacities in Binh Duong. The company is already strong in Vietnam with 850 people and has 5 production sites, 2 research centres, 6 logistics platforms, 2 technical centres, and 1 analysis laboratory in the country.
WH Group, owner of pork giant Smithfield Foods, announced in late September that it acquired 3 pork processing plants and 5 distribution centres in Romania. It acquired the companies Elit and Vericom, together having a production capacity of up to 45,000 tonnes. It has been a busy summer for Smithfield, as in June, Smithfield acquired 3 Pini Group-owned packaged meat companies, based in Poland. That deal included Pini Polska, Hamburger Pini and an investment project, Royal Chicken.
Smithfield also agreed to increase shipments of pork products from its plant in Crete, NB, United States to Sagami, a foodservice chain in Japan, known for fried pork cutlets at more than 170 restaurants. Representatives from both companies signed an agreement in September. The agreement followed a 2016 plant tour of the Crete processing plant by Sagami’s CEO.
Last but not least: some news on technical developments. Lallemand Animal Nutrition cooperated on a published article on post-weaning piglet gut microbiota dysbiosis in the journal Trends in Microbiology. In the article, the company cooperated with scientists from research institutions including University of Clermont Auvergne, Idele, and INRA, all in France and Ghent University, Belgium. The authors reviewed the impact of abrupt dietary and environmental changes during weaning caused to piglets’ digestive microbiota, which can lead to enteric problems. They looked into the effects of non-antimicrobial alternatives that are currently evaluated to restore intestinal balance and allow better management of the weaning transition. In addition, the review evaluated in vitro models that have been designed to study piglet microbiota and develop new feed additives.
Pig nutrition company Produmix recently held a technical swine seminar in Taipei, Taiwan. In this training session, the participants analysed the current swine production situation, as well as the Taiwanese market and its future challenges. The seminar was part of a training roadmap set by the Spanish company. Produmix has had a presence in Taiwan since 2010.