As expected, Covid-19 has been dominating the world of pig business companies in April 2020. Companies issuing strict guidelines, offering a helping hand or being insecure about their near future. Yet the Covid-19 crisis also appears to be a time when new ideas can surface.
To help deal with the current Covid-19 health crisis, veterinary pharmaceutical company Hipra has given over its new laboratories – nearly 700 m2 of laboratories equipped with modern PCR diagnostic technology – to hospitals for the analysis of samples and the manufacture of ventilators with 3D printers. Meanwhile, the company continues to manufacture and distribute its medicinal products.
Similarly, Swedish specialty chemicals company Perstorp stepped in and started the large-scale production of hand sanitiser and surface disinfectant for the Swedish healthcare sector – at cost price. With a capacity of over 2 million liters a month, the aim is to solve the lack of disinfectants at a national level. In the livestock industry, the company is known for the manufacturing of animal nutrition products.
The Meat and Poultry Industry Russia 2020 management team has decided to postpone the exhibition (originally planned for the ending of May) to October 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. More than 90% of the exhibitors agreed that the postponement of the event is the best solution. Meat and Poultry Industry Russia 2020 is powered by VIV worldwide.
Whether or not the annual French international livestock event SPACE can be held in 2020, will be decided mid-June. The organisers wrote: “Due to the global outbreak of Covid-19, it is not clear whether we will be able to hold the event as expected, since we do not yet know if large gatherings such as SPACE will be authorised in September.” The event is scheduled for 15-18 September in Rennes, France.
Thai-based agribusiness Charoen Pokphand Foods has implemented stronger health and safety measures throughout its supply chain to ensure the highest standard of food safety and to guarantee traceability. The company has also launched a video presenting internationally recognised food safety standard operation and the robotic instillation in the production line to reduce human contact with foods.
The Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate and MatMaCorp, based in Nebraska, USA, has completed an evaluation of a portable acid analysis system genetic test to detect ASF in infected pigs and pork products. Clinical tissue samples were collected from infected pigs, and researchers were able to detect the virus in all samples. “Technologies like these allow testing to move out of the lab and onto the front lines,” said microbiologist Dr Michael Puckette.
Agrimprove, the functional feed ingredients brand of Royal Agrifirm Group, has introduced a new feed mitigator called FeedLock, which is based on a targeted combination of medium chain fatty acids. This product has proven to mitigate viral contamination of feed. It is used as a biosecurity measure on farm to close feed-related entry routes for contamination by enveloped viruses like ASF, PED and PRRS.
Anue Water Technologies, based in Georgia, US, has launched customisable geo-membrane coverings for odour elimination for industries in the US, Canada and the Caribbean. The technology consists of high strength geo-membranes fitted with pockets that contain replaceable filter media, custom engineered to fit each application and ensure broad-spectrum odour control. That means application is also possible to eliminate odours at pig farms.
Dutch-based VDL Agrotech decided to make first steps into the market of insects for use in animal feed. The company offers solutions to simplify production and will supply feeding machines for the insect market in the near future. To that end, the company appointed Tim van Heertum as project engineer, who will focus on the development of feeding machines for insects. The company notes that in the pig market there is a growing interest for insect oil.
Founded in France, Nuqo has been launched. The company is involved in the development, production and supply of natural ingredients using algae bioactives and encapsulation techniques. Solutions that help animal performance, health and welfare are manufactured in 3 different production sites across Europe, using technology that “preserves efficacy and optimal release of active ingredients”.
SwineTech has completed a US$ 5 million Series A round of financing, bringing total funding to $ 6.3 million since launching its SmartGuard farrowing management platform. The portable device leverages voice recognition, computer vision and behavioural tracking to assist in bringing automation and traceability to the pork industry. The system offers real-time insights to each sow’s behaviour, individual stall micro-climate control, and birthing identification, analytics and guidance.
Topigs Norsvin USA announced a new boar stud partnership with BoarMax which, with the addition of TN Tempo and Norsvin Duroc boars, will house over 700 boars under HEPA filtration and air conditioning at its 32 ha base of operations in Missouri, USA. BoarMax has experienced no disease outbreaks in its 24-year history, and the company’s mission is to offer quality semen.
Meanwhile, Topigs Norsvin’s turnover grew in 2019 by 21% to € 165 million, with operating profit increasing by 64%, in the same period, to over € 11 million.
DanBred established a new subsidiary in Germany, DanBred GmbH, effective May 1st, 2020. With the establishment, the Danish company will ensure the continuous supply of breeding animals to the German market, maintain a clear identity and profile in the country and be better equipped to service customers with a wide range of service solution offerings. The establishment has come to pass in collaboration with long-established DanBred agent Fenker & Hellebusch.
The trait ‘Male fertility’ in the company’s Duroc breeding goal has changed into ‘Fertility & Survival’. According to simulations from DanBred R&D – the Danish Pig Research Centre – this change will lead to improved piglet survival as early as this year.
For the 5th year, Boehringer Ingelheim sponsors the European PRRS Research Award to support applied research for improved control of the Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome swine disease. Research proposals must be submitted by 1 July 2020. The company will provide 3 grants of € 25,000 each to fund research proposals that will generate new and relevant data to better understand this disease.
Two pig research efforts triumphed at in the 1st edition of the Nutreco Young Researchers Prize. Out of a total of 57 submissions, the 1st prize of € 12,000 went to Sudhanshu Sudan, University of Guelph, Canada, looking at combatting weaning stress in piglets with probiotics and peptides. The 2nd prize (€ 8,000) was for Ning Ma from China Agricultural University, exploring how weaned piglet selection by probiotic-derived postbiotics influences long-term gut health.
Nutreco also announced that it has committed to adopting science based targets. In doing so, the company joined the global ranks of 850 other companies by signing a letter of commitment indicating that the company will work to set a science-based emission reduction target.