Thursday, April 30, 2009

Growers lose court battle with Pilgrim's

Nine broiler growers lost their fight in federal bankruptcy court to keep their contracts with Pilgrim’s Pride processing plant in Live Oak, Fla.
The court said the growers did not prove that their contracts were cancelled in retaliation for complaints of discrimination or that the decision discriminated against Hispanic growers.
Pilgrim's Pride severed contracts with 26 of 158 growers in the Live Oak area as part of Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings that also saw layoffs of 505 of the processing plant's 1,400 workers.
The company cancelled the contracts of the 26 least efficient growers based on cost per pound over a year's worth of flocks.
The ruling did leave open the possibility of the growers recouping their losses in bankruptcy proceedings as long as the company remains solvent.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Calif. committee votes to ban antibiotics in poultry

The California Senate Committee on Food and Agriculture passed Senate Bill 416 April 21 by a vote of 3-1, after the bill was introduced by Senate Majority Leader Dean Florez (D-Shafter) to phase out the use of non-therapeutic antibiotics in animals meant for human consumption, according to a press release from the senator.
Florez made school meal programs the initial target of his bill, which states that schools cannot serve meat or poultry treated with non-therapeutic antibiotics after January 1, 2012. By 2015, the ban on non-therapeutic antibiotics would apply to any animal raised for human consumption in the state.
SB 416 will next be heard by the Senate Education Committee.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Still time to register for WATT Online Animal Nutrition and Health Forum

Register Today for the first WATT Online Animal Nutrition & Health Forum, April 29, the educational and knowledge-sharing event for global poultry, pig and animal feed professionals.
The event is designed for nutritionists, veterinarians, production/husbandry managers, technical consultants, and manufacturers of animal health products, feed ingredients and feed additives.
The virtual Forum will be held April 29, 2009 from 08.00 hrs - 17.00 hrs. CDT (-5 GMT). Attend at any time during the day! Need not be present all day! Enter and leave the Forum as your schedule allows.

The Forum will be open for 90 days after the live event. Register today and enter when you can.
You will be able to view the on-demand presentations, download valuable educational information and visit and communicate with sponsors when your schedule allows.

Click Here for a Tour of the Event • Free to Attend • No Travel Required

Antibiotics in Animal Feeds: World Perspectives
Moderator: Dr. Peter Ferket
Panelists: Lis Alban, DVM - Dr. Hector Cervantes - Dr. Sprangler Klopp

1. Antibiotics in Animal Feeds: World Perspectives
2. Feeding the Weaned Pig for Gut Health
3. 10 ideas that Will Change the Future of Poultry Nutrition and Health
4. Impact of Alternative Ingredients on Poultry Feed Cost and Quality
5. Balancing Nutrients, Costs in Poultry Feed Formulation(en EspaƱol)

• Education and networking opportunity with poultry, animal feed and pig professionals from around the world.
• Live question and answer sessions with top industry experts
• Ability to visit "virtual booths" and communicate with poultry, animal feed and pig industry solution providers.
• FREE to attend & you can log-in from the comfort of your office or home.
• It's fun and just by attending you have a chance to win prizes including an iPod touch.
To sign up, get more information, learn about a sponsorship package or view a "virtual tour" visit:

Monday, April 27, 2009

WHO declares swine flu crisis health emergency

The World Health Organization has declared the swine flu outbreak in North America a "public health emergency of international concern."
The decision means countries around the world will be asked to step up reporting and surveillance of the disease implicated in human deaths in Mexico and at least 20 non-fatal cases in the US. WHO fears the outbreak could spread to other countries and is calling for a coordinated response to contain it.
WHO director-general Margaret Chan made the decision late Saturday after consulting influenza experts during an emergency meeting. She earlier told reporters the outbreak had "pandemic potential." But her agency held off raising its pandemic alert level, citing the need for more information.
"It would be prudent for health officials within countries to be alert to outbreaks of influenza-like illness or pneumonia, especially if these occur in months outside the usual peak influenza season," Chan told reporters by telephone from Geneva, where she convened an emergency meeting of influenza experts.
Several Latin American and Asian countries have already started surveillance or screening at airports and other points of entry.
More than 100 people have died from severe pneumonia caused by a flu-like illness in Mexico, WHO says. More than 1,600 people are ill with the symptoms. Some of those who died are confirmed to have a unique flu type that is a combination of bird, pig and human viruses.
US authorities said 20 people were infected with swine flu in California, Texas, New York, Kansas and Ohio All recovered, having had only mild symptoms. Canada has also reported some mild cases.
WHO's emergency committee, called together Saturday for the first time since it was created in 2007, draws on experts from around the world. They may decide the outbreak constitutes an international public health emergency. If so, they will consider whether WHO should recommend travel advisories, trade restrictions or border closures and raise its pandemic alert level.
President Obama said Monday the swine flu outbreak is a "cause for concern and requires a heightened state of alert," but is not a "cause for alarm," according to a
story from CNN.
He added the federal government is closely monitoring the situation and declared a public health emergency as a "precautionary tool to ensure that we have the resources we need at our disposal to respond quickly and effectively."

Friday, April 24, 2009

Fake IDs used to work at Cargill plant

An Ohio woman charged with three felonies for processing hundreds of identification cards for illegal immigrants allegedly made some of the cards for several people who used them to work at Cargill Meat Solutions poultry processing plant in Dayton, Va, according to a news story.
Nekeia Mack-Fuller, 31, of Reynoldsburg, Ohio, is charged with aggravated identity fraud and two conspiracy charges.
Mack-Fuller is one of eight charged in the case.
Christina Cheatham, 25, of Columbus, Ohio, was called as a witness for the prosecution and said the Eastside License Agency helped about 700 people get IDs in Ohio. Cheatham also is implicated in the fake ID spree.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Flock study results released

Don Bell of the University of California, Riverside, has circulated Part 13 B of the National Flock Performance Study.
This report considered income over feed costs and pullet depreciation for flocks with a first-cycle length ranging from 47 to 91 weeks as the extremes.
Data was collected from 11 companies participating in the National Flock Performance Study. Seven of the 11 companies applied either non-molt or single-molt programs. The contribution margin was calculated from the difference between revenue, using standardized prices for grades, minus feed cost and pullet depreciation. This value was multiplied by 52 weeks.
The contribution margin ranged from $3.93 per hen housed to $5.37 per hen housed. The differences among respondents reflected length of the laying cycle, strain selected and management. Lower returns were associated with shorter flock aged at either depletion or onset of molt, and the higher contribution margins were associated with an extended first cycle, usually with flock depletion at approximately 80 weeks of age. The correlation factor between contribution margin and age was 0.43.
Each week of extending the first cycle from 50-90 weeks of age added 5.6 cents to the 52-week contribution margin.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Vietnam tariff hikes stifle meat, poultry imports

Two Vietnam import tax hikes have reduced the quantity of meat and poultry imports entering the country, according to an article from Viet Nam News.
Last October, the
Ministry of Finance increased import duties on meat and poultry for the first time by 2% to slow the movement of imported goods into the country and help stimulate the domestic husbandry industry.
The ministry instituted a second tax increase in February, with a rise from 17% to 33% on fresh and frozen beef.
However, the tax hike did not do enough to prevent the influx of imported meat and poultry, according to the article.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

China challenges US ban on poultry

China has contested a US ban on the import of Chinese poultry in a case filed with the World Trade Organization.

Beijing also said Washington is breaking global commerce rules in stopping Chinese chicken parts from entering the US, according to an Associated Press report.

The bird flu outbreak of 2004 saw both nations bar the import of the other’s poultry. China lifted the embargo a few months later.

Since 2004, more than 4 million tons of US poultry have made their way to China -- most being parts, such as chicken feet, favorable only in China.

Monday, April 20, 2009

China, Japan meat giants sign $168 million project

China's largest meat producer, the Shineway Group, has signed a $168 million (1.15 billion yuan) joint project agreement with Japan's largest meat processing company, Nippon Meat Packers.
Under the deal, the two companies will build a facility in Henan province that will include feed processing, breeder production, broiler production, slaughtering, and processing. It is scheduled to be completed in 2010.
Shineway will own the joint project, Lei Yuting, a manager in the company's investment and development office, told Poultry International.
Nippon Meat Packers will be responsible for the broiler production, he added.
Currently, Henan-based Shineway Group produces processed chicken products, but does not operate any broiler farms or broiler slaughterhouses.
According to Lei, the company’s new plant is expected to provide 50 million birds to its own poultry processing factories and food services every year, with 3 billion yuan of annual sales income.
The new facility will help Shineway take on China's current market leader, Shandong-based
Liuhe Group Co., Ltd., which ranks first with 200 million birds of annual output.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Egg prices down 31% compared to last year

The April 6, 2009 layer flock projection and economic commentary produced by Don Bell, University of California, Riverside contains the following updated statistics and projections:

  • The hatch-to-date covering January/February 2009 is approximately 3.5% below the corresponding placements for the first two months of 2008 with an average of approximately 37 million pullet chicks placed per month.
  • Projected pullet placement into layer houses through July 2009 exceeds the equivalent seven month period in 2008 by 1.7 million.
  • The average flock size for the first two months of 2009 is 283.7 million hens or 0.1% greater than in 2008.
  • Total egg production for the first two months of 2009 was 12,499 million or 0.5% below the 2008 figure, confirming a restraint in expansion.
  • 24.6% of the flock had been molted at the end of February 2009 which is 1.1% lower than the value for the first two months of 2008.
  • Hen slaughter for the first two months of 2009 averaged 4.85 million or 17% lower than in 2008.
  • Shell eggs broken amounted to 5.183 million cases for the first two months of 2009 compared to 5.395 million cases in 2008, a reduction of 3.8%.
  • Urner-Barry Midwest Large egg price averaged 112 cents per dozen for the first three months of 2009 which is 31% lower than the average of 162 cents per dozen for the three-month period in 2008.
  • Urner-Barry Midwest breaker egg prices declined by 56% from 108 cents per dozen for the first quarter of 2008 to 47.4 cents per dozen for the first quarter of 2009.
  • The estimated cost of egg production for the first quarter of 2009 declined by 11.7% from 69.5 cents per dozen to 58.2 cents per dozen.
  • Hen numbers will decline slightly from a March value of 283.2 million through September then will increase to 284.6 million and 285.6 million respectively in November and December 2009.
  • The projection for Urner-Barry Midwest large will decline from 105 cents per dozen to a low of 85.1 cents per dozen in June thereafter rising to 98.1 cents per dozen and 95.8 cents per dozen in November and December respectively. The projection for January and February shows an increase to 112.7 cents per dozen based partly on economic recovery and also a reduction in hen flock to 284.4 million and 283.4 million respectively for first two months in 2010. Price projections have been revised downward from the previous monthly report.

USDA-ERS values published in the Livestock and Poultry Situation Report for April project an annual production of 6,455 million dozen for 2009 or 0.8% higher than 2008. Egg consumption is estimated at 247.1 per capita compared to 248.9 per capita in 2008.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

DSM to open fourth feed plant in China

Netherlands-based Royal DSM N.V. will break ground for its fourth Chinese premix feed facility in Changchun, a major city in northeastern China, in May.
The new $5 million feed plant is expected to produce 25,000 metric tons of premix feed annually starting in December 2009, DSM spokeswoman Wang Ren told Feed International.
According to Wang, this feed factory will serve local farmers as well as animal feed producers in Jilin province, Liaoning province, Heilongjiang province and Inner Mongolia.
“Despite the economic depression, DSM takes an optimistic view of China, especially China’s premix feed market,” DSM China President, Jiang Weiming, said in a statement.
DSM's first Chinese premix feed plant was opened in 1997. Today, the company has three factories in Shanghai, Shandong province and Hunan province.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Arkansas rep wants help for poultry industry

According to a press release from Arkansas Rep. Mike Ross, the representative has urged U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to aid poultry farmers during the current economic downtown.
The closing of the Pilgrim’s Pride processing plant in El Dorado, Ark., prompted Ross and eight other members of Congress to send a letter to Vilsack asking him to free federal resources to help the nation’s struggling poultry farmers stay afloat.
“The financial troubles of Pilgrim’s Pride and the imminent closing of their El Dorado plant jeopardizes the local economy and I believe that every available resource should be used to help the people of El Dorado recover,” said Ross in the release.
“I am also deeply concerned with the tremendous financial burden this bankruptcy will place on contract growers in Arkansas, threatening our state’s overall poultry industry.”
The members of Congress sent the letter to Vilsack asking him to free a portion of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development funds to be used for short-term, low-interest loans or other forms of financial assistance such as disaster aid funding, according to the release.
“While this plan would offer temporary assistance to many poultry growers, the El Dorado processing plant must remain open in order to provide contracts to our growers,” Ross said.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Investors favor U.S. meat

According to an article on, people are increasing their investment in shares of Tyson, Smithfield, Hormel and Sanderson Farms.
With the recent overall rise in the stock market combined with impending warm weather encouraging people to cook meat on the grill, meat sales have increased.
Despite the meat industry losing money in 2008 due to high feed prices and meat production being down this year due to shrinking herds and flocks, prices should be driven up by smaller supplies once consumers start eating out again, according to the article.
As of now, consumers are sticking to homemade and lower-priced meat items because of the recession.
An explanation for the increased popularity of meat company stocks may be due to less favorable options elsewhere in the market, according to the article.
"They may be good compared with the alternatives," said Paul Aho, an industry economist, of meat company shares in the article.
"Would you put your money into GM right now or into a chicken company? I think food is going to be popular. People have to eat -- they may eat less, but they eat."
The stocks show the demand:
Tyson Foods shares have about doubled since November, to $11; Smithfield Foods reached $11.60, about doubling since March; and at Sanderson Farms, shares have increased since November to $40.77. Hormel Foods Corp. prices have not increased as sharply but have risen from the March low of $29.40 to about $31.63 as of April 13.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Pilgrim's Pride to close Georgia plant

Pilgrim's Pride Corporation announced April 13 plans to close its chicken processing plant in Dalton, Ga., within 60 days and consolidate production at the company's processing facility in Chattanooga, Tenn., according to a press release from the company.
The purpose of closing the plant is to improve the company's capacity utilization and reduce costs, according to the company. Approximately 280 employees who work at the Dalton plant will be affected by the closing; however, the hatchery in Cohutta, Ga., will continue to operate. Other live production operations will also continue to function, but as a part of the Chattanooga complex or other nearby operations.
Approximately 120 independent contract growers who currently supply birds to the Dalton processing plant will be transitioned to begin supplying the company's Chattanooga plant or other nearby company facilities within approximately 90 days.
“While the decision to eliminate jobs is always painful, we are taking decisive steps now to protect the greatest number of jobs in order to restructure our business and ultimately emerge from Chapter 11 as a stronger, more efficient competitor," said Don Jackson, president and chief executive officer.
There will not be any disruption in the supply of product to retail, foodservice and industrial customers as a result of closing the Dalton facility, according to the release.

Friday, April 10, 2009

EPA's CAFO regulation changes challenged

The National Chicken Council and U.S. Poultry & Egg Association have filed suit in the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans challenging certain aspects of the Environmental Protection Agency’s new regulation on water pollution discharges from confined animal feeding operations.
The new regulation was issued in response to the industry’s victory in the Second U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York in 2005, in which the court said EPA could not require growers to apply for permits merely because they have a “potential to discharge” pollutants to the waters of the U.S., the release explained.
EPA replaced that portion of the rule with a new provision that would require permits where there is a "proposal to discharge." The lawsuit will challenge the new requirement as not conforming to the Second Circuit’s ruling.
The lawsuit also challenges recent guidance documents, issued by EPA in the form of letters, that interpret the CAFO regulation. According to the release, the letters say a grower has a "proposal to discharge," and therefore must apply for a permit, if poultry housing has a ventilation fan that may potentially exhaust dust or other substances on the ground where rain water might wash them into a ditch leading to surface waters.
NCC and USPOULTRY will argue Congress did not intend to regulate these normal agricultural practices when it enacted the Clean Water Act.

USDA to stabilize turkey prices

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Secretary Tom Vilsack announced March 31 that the USDA will purchase up to a $60 million bonus of turkey meat to help stabilize falling turkey prices, according to a National Turkey Federation press release.
The secretary said USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service intends to expedite a major bonus purchase of turkey meat within the next six weeks to help turkey growers and processors who have been hurt in the current recession. His announcement came while testifying before the House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee.
“This purchase hopefully will help reverse a downward trend in turkey prices.” said NTF President Joel Brandenberger in the release.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

South Jarkarta districts declared AI “Red Zones”

Two districts in South Jakarta, Kecamatan Pesanggrahan and Kebayoran Lama, have been declared "Red Zones" for avian influenza, according to a local news report.
"It means that this area is susceptible to bird flu spreading," said head of the Livestock and Fishery Service, South Jakarta, Chaidir Taufik, after his team had finished a fowl depopulation measure March 25.
The Livestock and Fishery Service of South Jakarta culled about 1,322 fowls from 10 districts in South Jakarta in response to the deaths of two human AI victims in February and March this year.

Investigation initiates change in layer housing

Following a welfare investigation of a Maine farm and refusal of deliveries by supermarket chains, the chief executive officer of Radlo Foods said they will stop using cage confinement systems.
On April 1 the Maine Department of Agriculture, together with a representative of the State Animal Welfare Department entered an in-line egg production complex in Turner, Maine.
The farm, owned by Quality Egg of New England LLC, is one of eight similar units formerly owned and operated by companies under the control of Austin “Jack” DeCoster who established the complex of approximately 4 million hens during the mid-1960s.
During the 1990s the operation was subjected to penalties imposed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and a multi-million dollar settlement of an action brought by employees and was reorganized in 1997 as an LLC.
The present problem arises from an undercover investigation by Mercy for Animals who placed an agent in the farm as an employee of Maine Contract Farms LLC, responsible for flock management. Allegations including neglect of flocks and mishandling are currently under investigation by state authorities and if substantiated will be referred to the Franklin County District Attorney. The farm was leased from Quality Egg LLC by Radlo Foods to produce branded eggs.
Faced with adverse publicity, a number of supermarket chains in the state and region refused deliveries of eggs from the complex. A national company that had franchised Radlo Foods, initiated an immediate investigation of the allegations. The franchisee revoked the agreement with Radlo Foods on grounds Radlo "was working with a farm that is not in compliance with the strict animal welfare standards required." Radlo Foods in turn is withdrawing from the operation in Maine.
Radlo Foods has pledged to become an exclusively cage-free company within 10 years.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

New resource for poultry disease recognition

Poultry Examination and Diagnostics, a multimedia resource developed by poultry specialists at Cornell University and the United States Department of Agriculture, is now available online for free.
The information is also available on a three-disc DVD set that can be installed on a laptop computer and used in the field. This DVD set includes a three-hour instructional video series and the interactive diagnostic tool, Atlas of Avian Diseases. The tool is designed to allow users to search for clinical images demonstrating a variety of diseases and review up-to-date recommendations on diagnostic testing, prevention, and control measures.
Video topics in Poultry Examination and Diagnostics, featuring 3-D animations designed to simplify learning, include:
Avian Necropsy Examination - a step-by-step guide to performing a systematic post-mortem exam in poultry with an emphasis on recognizing gross lesions, and;
Avian Diagnostic Sample Collection - detailed instructions for collecting and submitting high-quality blood, tissue, and swab samples for serology, histopathology, bacteriological, and viral isolation.

2-year-old Egyptian boy ill with bird flu

A 2-year-old Egyptian boy from the province of Beheira has contracted the bird flu virus, according to a story from Reuters.
The case marks the 61st confirmed bird flu virus incident in Egypt, according to state news agency MENA.
Six new human cases of the flu strain have hit Egypt during the past month.
MENA health ministry spokesman Abdel Rahman Shahine said the boy contracted the virus after having contact with infected birds.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

USDA forecasts 2009 exports

The March edition of Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook published by the Economic Research Service of the USDA forecasts shell egg exports at 221 million dozen in 2009, a 7% increase over 2008.
Traditional purchasers of shell eggs including Canada, Japan, Hong Kong and Mexico will continue to be the major importers. Demand will increase progressively during the year consistent with an anticipated improvement in world economic conditions.

Poultry groups join forces on safety, health

Three poultry industry organizations have partnered to form the Joint Poultry Industry Safety and Health Council to streamline efforts in the area of worker safety and health:
National Chicken Council

National Turkey Federation

U.S. Poultry & Egg Association
This council will essentially replace the existing NTF/NCC Safety and Health Committee by combining with the respective committee at USPOULTRY. The JPISHC will represent the entire poultry industry on issues relating to worker safety and health.
In a similar move, NCC, NTF and USPOULTRY have also formed the Joint Poultry Industry Human Resources Council. This council will essentially replace the existing NTF/NCC Human Resources Committee by combining with the respective committee at USPOULTRY. Arrangements for committee chairmanship and staff support from the industry associations is being handled in the same way for the JPIHRC as it will be for the JPISHC.

Monday, April 6, 2009

AI found on Perdue farm in Kentucky

Non-pathogenic or low-pathogenic avian influenza, which strain poses minimal risk to human health, was recently discovered on a single broiler/breeder poultry farm in western Kentucky, according to a news report from
The farm has been quarantined by State Veterinarian Robert C. Stout. A location producing hatching eggs for Perdue Farms Inc., the company plans to depopulate 20,000 chickens on the farm.
The Kentucky Department of Agriculture is surveying backyard flocks within a two-mile radius of the farm.
"There is no evidence that any infected poultry are in the human food supply as a result of this infection,” Stout said. “We will do what is necessary to minimize the disruption to overseas trade."

Preemptive responses to caged legislation

House Bill 2151 has been introduced into the Oklahoma Legislature stating “The Legislature occupies and preempts the entire fields of legislation in this State but concerns in any way the regulation and enforcement of the care and handling of livestock to the complete exclusion of any order, ordinance, or regulation by any municipality or other political subdivision of this State.”
A similar motion was introduced into the Georgia House of Representatives reading “no county, municipal cooperation, consolidated government, or other political subdivision of this State shall adapt any ordinance, rule, regulation or resolution regulating crop management or animal husbandry practices.”
These initiatives are in response to California Proposition 2 which was a ballot initiative. It is presumed by some animal agriculture industry members that where animal rights and welfare activist have failed in their attempts to introduce legislation at the state level, that county and municipal action would be taken to prevent the establishment of Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations including egg production facilities.
These actions in Oklahoma and Georgia should be followed in all states which do not have constitutional provisions for either statewide or countywide voter initiatives.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Brazil chicken, egg production up in 2008

In 2008, 4.875 billion chickens were processed with an 11.5% increase, and egg production increased by 5.3%, to 2.280 million dozen, according to the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics.
Chicken processing in 2008 was above the 2007 figure, during all of the 12 months in the year. Processing during the fourth quarter was 1,245 million broilers, an increase of 8.5% compared to the same period in 2007.
Carcass weight reached a total of 2.550 million metric tons, an increase of 5.8% compared to the fourth quarter 2007.
Egg production was higher than 2007 production for all months of 2008. Production during the fourth quarter was of 574.807 million dozens, a 3.4% increase compared to same period in 2007, and a 0.4% decrease compared to the third quarter of 2008.

Report on China processing market available

A report on China’s slaughter and meat processing market is available, and it includes information on egg yield and production, according to a news release.
The report shows poultry egg yield was 25.13 million tons in 2007, rising 1.05 million tons from 2006, having increased by 4.4%.
The share of poultry egg per capita was 22.3 kilos in 2007, increasing by 4 kilos from 2006.

USDA releases 2009 Prospective Crop Plantings report

U.S. producers intend to plant less in 2009 than in 2008, says University of Illinois Extension Economist Darrel Good and according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Prospective Plantings report.
Planting intentions for all crops included in the survey are 7.8 million acres less than acreage seeded to those crops in 2008. Including acreage of hay intended for harvest, the decline is about 7.6 million.

Declines total as follows:
*4.5 million for wheat
*1.3 million for sorghum
*1 million for corn
*658,000 for cotton
*446,000 for sunflowers
*410,000 for peanuts
*154,000 for canola

For wheat, 75% of the acreage reduction is for winter wheat, even though winter wheat seedings are 791,000 acres larger than reported in January. Intended acreage of soybeans included in the report is 306,000 more than planted in 2008. Intended acreage of all oilseed crops is 672,500 less and acreage of feed grains (corn, sorghum, barley, and oats) is 2.4 million less than planted in 2008.
The complete USDA report can be accessed here.

First quarter U.S. chick placements down 6%

Cumulative broiler chick placements in the U.S. from December 28, 2008 through March 28, 2009 were 2.18 billion, down 6% from the same period a year earlier, according to the USDA Broiler Hatchery report.
The decline in weekly chick placements has varied somewhat from week to week, but the number of chicks placed has always been lower than last year.
Week ending March 28, 2009 chick placements were down 8% from the same week in 2008. The number of boiler eggs set in incubators last week was down 7% from the same period in 2008.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Salmonella in only 0.3% of Danish poultry

Figures released in Denmark to cover food monitoring in calendar year 2008 show that there is little salmonella in Danish poultry, say local reports.
The data comes from a new report from Denmark's national food agency on the findings of salmonella and campylobacter in both locally produced and imported meat in 2008. The level of salmonella in Danish poultry meat is reported to have been only 0.3%.
Such a low level demonstrates that Denmark fully meets the requirements for achieving special status in the European Union for salmonella in broilers, said Danish food minister Eva Kjaer Hansen.

Sadia reports first loss in 64 years

Brazil’s Sadia reported losses in the fourth quarter and for all of 2008, despite record sales and exports, due to strong losses on currency derivatives.
The net loss for the quarter was 2.04 billion reais ($890.1 million), compared to profits of 374.5 million reais in the fourth quarter of 2007. For the full year of 2008, the company posted a loss of 2.48 billion reais, the first annual loss in its 64-year history.
Despite the large currency losses, net sales jumped 15.9% to 3.06 billion reais, led by an increase in frozen food products and poultry.
Sadia’s report emphasized that in 2008 it was the largest producer in the Brazilian meat sector and the largest exporter of animal protein.
Its gross sales increased 23% in relation in to 2007 with an increase in sales volume of more than 8%.
In the international market Sadia’s sales volume increased 5% to 1.2 million tons, representing 46% of its total sales, which is in line with the company’s strategy.
In the poultry sector, sales in the Brazilian market dropped very slightly in volume, 0.3%, but grew 11% in value, compared to 2007.

Vencomatic ventures into Spain

Poultry equipment producer Vencomatic of the Netherlands is opening a new operation in Spain: Vencomatic Iberica.
This new operation is a joint venture with the Spanish nest and feed equipment producer Gura Automatizaciones Avicolas.
Gura’s production unit in Reus, Spain, will be renamed Vencomatic Iberica.
“After having set up a production facillity in Brazil, starting a joint venture in China and opening several branch offices in the USA, Canada, the UK, Poland and the far east, this step fits very well to the strategy of Vencomatic to have a strong local presence worldwide,” Vencomatic’s General Manager, Koen Boot, said.
Vencomatic and Gura’s joint venture operation will be called Vencomatic Iberica.