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Newsletter 5th July 2004

thePigSite.com's Weekly Swine Industry Newsletter thePigSite.com's Weekly Swine Industry Newsletter
Monday 5th July 2004
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Welcome to this weeks newsletter

* News Overview (link to ALL this weeks news)

This week we start in the EU, where the EU Court of Justice has annulled a decision by the EU Council over grant aid to Portuguese pig farmers.
     In 1994 and 1998 Portugal granted aid measures to its pig farmers which in 2001, was the declared "incompatible with the Common Market" by the European Commission. However, in 2002 the European Council decided to authorize aid to Portuguese pig farmers, which the Commission challenged.
    In its ruling the Court of Justice said the Council was not able to authorize aid measures which the Commission has already declared incompatible with the common market, and aid granted under the scheme should be repaid.

In the UK, the third PorkWatch survey starts on Monday, July 5, when pig industry volunteers will check several hundred stores in England and Wales. The aim is to find out which supermarkets are supporting high welfare British pork, bacon and ham reports the NPA.

Defra insists it is better placed to cope with another outbreak of foot-and-mouth as its practise run continues. The government is running Exercise Hornbeam which is simulating days 7 & 8 of an outbreak, to examining the role vaccination would play in controlling the disease.

In Europe, mainland pig meat average producer prices have risen from €1.20/kg in mid May and now stand at €1.48 which is equivalent to almost 100p/kg, write Peter Crichton on FWi. Once transport costs and the Sterling:Euro exchange rate are allowed for, imports from most EU pig production countries are now almost on a par with domestic levels. A year ago EU mainland prices were as much as 25% below the equivalent values in the UK.

In Ireland, the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development has been urged to show pig farmers preferential treatment in the context of the proposed capital grant scheme, designed to help producers meet the slurry storage requirements of the soon to be introduced Nitrate Vulnerable Zone regulations. Lyle Rea, chairman of Pig Industry Genetics Ltd, said it was "important that DARD reflects the relatively greater need of pig farmers for slurry storage when it comes to the administration of the proposed capital grant scheme."

The Japanese government will launch an import curb on pork for the fourth straight year starting August 1, reports eFeedLink. The curb would raise the import price to Y510.03 per kilogram from the current Y409.90, but wholesalers have absorbed the price increase for the past three years and retail prices are not expected to changed much.

Taiwan's Council of Agriculture announced the implementation of a task force aimed at cracking down on the illegal sale of products from hogs that died of illness, reports MeatingPlace.com. The Taiwanese Consumer Protection Commission recently reported that 161 tons of tainted pork had been found over the past three years. Measures include the installation satellite positioning systems in vehicles that carry dead animals to incinerators, in hopes of stopping false delivery.

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In South Korea, the retail price of pork has hit a record high as mad cow disease and bird flu caused consumers to eat less beef and chicken and more pork, while fewer pigs are being raised. The Korea Swine Association said pig farmers have also raised their prices. The average price of pigs was up 7% in April and up 33% from May 2003.

In the US, the USDA's June Hogs and Pigs report implies that hog slaughter will run 2-3% above year-ago levels for the next 3-4 months then drop back near year-earlier levels for the following nine months, according to Ron Plain in his weekly Swine Economics report. Follow the links for all the news and views on the report.
See also:
June 2004 USDA Hogs and Pigs Report Commentary by Dr Mike Brumm
Sunshine replaces gloom in pork outlook by Chris Hurt

Land O'Lakes Inc. is looking at its options for the co-op's swine division, including selling the operation says Bizjournals. Land O'Lakes reported it hired Investment Bankers to explore "strategic options" for the business including joint ventures, partnerships or divestitures.

In Canada, Manitoba Pork Council says the entire Canadian pork industry has a vested interest in thwarting the efforts of US hog producers to have countervail and antidumping duties imposed on live Canadian hogs. In an effort to move as quickly as possible, Ted Muir, the Council's General Manager said Manitoba had taken the lead in defending against allegations that subsidized Canadian hogs dumped into the US are harming American swine producers.

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* Feature Articles Overview (link to features listings)

We have 4 new features this week

Antibiotic Use in Animals
By U.S. GAO - Scientific evidence has shown that certain bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics are transferred from animals to humans through the consumption or handling of meat that contains antibiotic-resistant bacteria. However, researchers disagree about the extent of harm to human health from this transference.

UK/EU Pig Statistics - June 2004
This article provides an overview of the latest statistics relating to pigs in the UK and Europe and includes Slaughter figures, Carcase weights, Pigmeat production, trade and supplies and UK and EU Prices and value of pigs. Extracted from the quarterly pig bulletin published by Defra.

Maternal pheromone application before and after weaning: effects on pig behavior and performance
By N. Krebs, and J. J. McGlone, Pork Industry Institute, Texas Tech University - Weaning is a stressful event for piglets. A synthetic maternal pheromone was studied to determine its effects on behavior and performance of groups of weaned piglets when applied either before and(or) after weaning.

The National Committee for Pig Production, Annual report 2003
By Danish Bacon & Meat Council, Danish Agriculture, and the Danish Pig Producers’ Association - The National Committee for Pig Production safeguards strategy, development and information tasks concerning the live pig, and has an ordinary net budget for the year 2003/2004 of DKK93.85 million. This report reviews a broad range of issues important to the pig producer.

* This Weeks Practical Tip (link to weekly tips page)
Extracted from
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Topic: The Management of Infertility
Subject: Infectious agents which may cause abortion

This weeks tip looks at a number of infectious agents which may also cause or result in abortion.

To read this weeks tip, Click Here

NEXT WEEK'S TIP: Specific Bacteria that may cause abortion


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* Finally...

Antibiotic Use in Animals

Many studies have found that the use of antibiotics in animals poses significant risks for human health, but a small number of studies contend that the health risks of the transference are minimal says the US General Accounting Office in a recent report into the subject:
     Antibiotic resistance is a growing public health concern; antibiotics used in animals raised for human consumption contributes to this problem.
     Three federal agencies address this issue—the Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Department of Agriculture (USDA).
     In the report the GAO examined (1) scientific evidence on the transference of antibiotic resistance from animals to humans and extent of potential harm to human health, (2) agencies’ efforts to assess and address these risks, (3) the types of data needed to support research on these risks and extent to which the agencies collect these data, (4) use of antibiotics in animals in the United States compared with its key agricultural trading partners and competitors, and (5) information on how use has affected trade.

To find out more read the report.

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That's all for this week.

Ed.

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