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U.S. Pork Producers Seek Main Course, Not Crumbs
Expanding U.S. export markets is vital to the success of American pork producers, but trade disputes with some of our top markets, most notably China, are hampering growth and have caused severe financial harm to U.S. hog farmers, National Pork Producers Council Vice President and Counsel of Global Government Affairs Nick Giordano said today at a Global Business Dialogue event in Washington, D.C.
“Mostly because of free trade agreements, the United States is the leading global exporter of pork. As a result, U.S. pork is an attractive candidate for trade retaliation. America’s hog farmers – and many other sectors of U.S. agriculture...
Smithfield Foods Marches Forward with Renewable Energy Projects
Smithfield Foods, Inc. is pleased to announce the construction of new biogas gathering systems in Missouri and Utah, which bring the company steps closer to delivering renewable natural gas (RNG) to communities in multiple states using manure from its hog farms. Detailed in its recently released Sustainability Report, Smithfield’s “manure-to-energy” projects are part of Smithfield Renewables, the company’s platform that unifies and accelerates its renewable energy efforts to help meet its goal to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions 25% by 2025.
“By finding innovative ways to reduce GHG emissions and use existing resources to power our planet, we are playing a critical role in providing consumers with nutritious food, as well as...
African Swine Fever Affects China's Pork Consumption
China’s pork consumption has dropped by 10% to 15%, year-to-date, by our estimates, driven by food safety concerns. The level of consumption change varies greatly between the different distribution channels. Looking forward, and reflecting on the current situation and trends, it is quite possible we have seen the ‘peak’ of pork consumption.
Pork Consumption in China has Dropped by 10% to 15%
The losses in China’s pig herd are very difficult to estimate – estimated losses range from 20% to 70%. Data from the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs (MARA) has the sow herd down by 22% in the year to April – this is one of the most optimistic estimates we have seen. However, hog and pork prices struggled in April and May, after a brief surge in March, raising significant questions...
NPPC Appeal: Let's Move Forward with USMCA, Leave Tariffs at Zero
In response to President Trump’s plan to impose five percent tariffs on all Mexican imports as of June 10, 2019, David Herring, president of the National Pork Producers Council and a pork producer from Lillington, North Carolina, issued the following statement:
“We appeal to President Trump to reconsider plans to open a new trade dispute with Mexico. American pork producers cannot afford retaliatory tariffs from its largest export market, tariffs which Mexico will surely implement. Over the last year, trade disputes with Mexico and China have cost hard-working U.S. pork producers and their families approximately $2.5 billion.
“Let’s move forward with ratification of the United States-Mexico-Canada trade agreement, preserving zero-tariff pork trade in North America for the long term; complete a trade agreement with Japan; and resolve...
Antibiotic Alternative Scores Well in Second Round of Swine Trials
Travelling can be stressful experience—whether it be to a vacation spot or business destination. The stress of travel also extends to piglets, such as when they’re weaned from their mothers and transported to nursery barns.
Now, instead of using dietary antibiotics to help the piglets cope and avoid illness, scientists with the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) are investigating a naturally occurring amino acid known as L-glutamine.
Initial laboratory studies in 2017 showed glutamine-fed piglets gained just as much weight as antibiotic-treated ones, among other health benefits. But the researchers, led by ARS animal scientist Jay Johnson, wanted to try and...
Algenex and Global DX Agree to Develop Diagnostic Products for the Detection of African Swine Fever
Algenex SL, a private biotechnology company delivering disruptive technologies for recombinant biologics production, and Global DX Ltd, a company dedicated to improving the quality of animal care by facilitating accurate diagnosis for veterinarians worldwide, today announce that they have entered into an agreement to jointly develop and commercialize diagnostic products for the detection of African Swine Fever. The first product to be developed will be a point-of-care rapid diagnostic test to identify pigs who have been exposed to the African Swine Fever Virus (ASFV). The agreement is the first collaboration between the two companies and provides the framework for further co-developments across a potentially wide range of diagnostic areas.
Under the terms of the agreement, Algenex will deliver the diagnostic reagents and Global DX will provide the technical expertise to develop and manufacture the point-of-care rapid diagnostic tests. Both companies will collaborate in the distribution of...
China Says Making Progress on African Swine Fever Vaccine
China will start work on clinical trials of an African swine fever vaccine, state media said on Friday, as the disease continues to spread through the world’s biggest hog herd.
State-owned Harbin Veterinary Research Institute has found two vaccine candidates, proven in laboratory tests to offer immunity to the disease, China National Radio said in a post on China’s microblogging site Weibo.
“In the next step, the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences will accelerate the progress of pilot and clinical trials, as well as vaccine production,” said the report...
USDA Announces Support for Farmers Impacted by Unjustified Retaliation and Trade Disruption
U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will take several actions to assist farmers in response to trade damage from unjustified retaliation and trade disruption. President Trump directed Secretary Perdue to craft a relief strategy to support American agricultural producers while the Administration continues to work on free, fair, and reciprocal trade deals to open more markets in the long run to help American farmers compete globally. Specifically, the President has authorized USDA to provide up to $16 billion in programs, which is in line with the estimated impacts of unjustified retaliatory tariffs on U.S. agricultural goods and other trade disruptions. These programs will assist agricultural producers while President Trump works to address long-standing...
USDA Releases Baseline Data on Antimicrobial Use by Beef and Swine Operations
The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is releasing the results of two national studies that examine antimicrobial use and stewardship on beef feedlots and on large swine operations during 2016.
The data USDA collected and studied will help animal health officials – as well as the human health community and consumers – better understand how antimicrobial drugs are used on livestock farms. The studies include details on what antimicrobials were used, why they were used and how they were administered...
USDA Enhances African Swine Fever Surveillance Efforts
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is furthering its overall African Swine Fever (ASF) preparedness efforts with the implementation of a surveillance plan. As part of this plan, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) will work with the swine industry, the states, and veterinary diagnostic laboratories to test for ASF.
ASF is a highly contagious and deadly disease affecting both domestic and feral (wild) pigs. It does not affect human health and cannot be transmitted from pigs to humans. ASF has never been detected in the United States...
More Wild Boars Detected in Belgium with African Swine Fever in April and May
According to the World Organization of Animal Health (OIE), Belgium reported 18 cases of individual wild boar inflicted with African Swine Fever between April 16th and May 10th 2019. All cases were reported and resolved, meaning the affected animals were culled, on the same day. These were the first reported ASF cases in Belgium since September 2018. Belgium continues to be the Western-most European nation afflicted with ASF.
Nestled between France and Germany, these outbreaks present a very real concern for the...
Tyson says Hog Disease Impact to Linger for Years
Global meat prices are poised to rise after China culled tens of millions of hogs to contain a fast-spreading swine disease, the chief executive of Tyson Foods Inc. said.
The top U.S. meat processing company already is paying higher prices for U.S. hogs and other meat as Chinese buyers crank up purchases, Tyson executives said Monday. In the months ahead, Tyson anticipates higher meat costs for consumers, as well as stronger profits in its own pork, beef and chicken-processing operations.
Noel White, CEO of the Arkansas-based company, said the potential impact of the past year's African swine fever outbreaks was unprecedented, and could lower global meat supplies by 5% at a time when protein consumption is on the rise world-wide...
PODCAST: African Swine Fever—Changing the Protein Landscape and Economy
Russell Barton sits down to discuss the severity and implications of African Swine Fever, herd losses, impact on exports, and a firming market. Also covered: Easter holiday impact on hams.
China Reports Latest African Swine Fever Outbreak, in Far West
China on Friday said it had confirmed a new outbreak of African swine fever, in the far western region of Xinjiang, as the highly contagious disease spreads through the world’s largest hog herd.
The outbreak in Xinjiang’s Shule county has killed 92 animals on two farms with a total of 583 pigs, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs said in a statement on its website.
China has reported about 120 cases of ...
Rabobank: Rising African Swine Fever Losses to Lift All Protein Boats
Production losses from African swine fever (ASF) have eclipsed initial estimates. The Chinese pork production shortfall, along with shortfalls in Southeast Asia, will create challenges and opportunities for animal protein exporters.
In 2019, we expect Chinese pork production losses of 25% to 35% in response to ASF. Reports of extreme losses (over 50%) are limited to confined areas.
Sizable breeding herd losses will delay the Chinese pork industry’s recovery. Rebuilding efforts will be further complicated by the risk of recontamination, despite ...
NPPC Cancels 2019 World Pork Expo as Precaution
The National Pork Producers Council's board of directors today announced its decision to cancel World Pork Expo 2019 out of an abundance of caution as African swine fever (ASF) continues to spread in China and other parts of Asia. World Pork Expo, held each June at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines, hosts approximately 20,000 visitors over three days, including individuals and exhibitors from ASF-positive regions. African swine fever affects only pigs and presents no human health or food safety risks. There is currently no vaccine to treat the swine disease."While an evaluation by veterinarians and other third-party experts concluded negligible risk associated with holding the event, we have decided to exercise extreme caution ...
USDA’s FSIS Condemns The Washington Post for False Reporting on a Critical Public Health Issue
The Washington Post says that democracy dies in darkness. If that’s the case, then The Washington Post’s story about the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is a solar eclipse.
FSIS is made up of 9,000 civil servants with the noblest of missions – to protect the American food supply. The safety of every meat, poultry, and egg product in the United States is ensured by FSIS inspection personnel, each and every day.
It’s a responsibility and mission so important that every FSIS employee takes an Oath of Office. If only The Washington Post was held to the same standard ...
Pork Essentially Free of Veterinary Drug Residues
In a basic survey of more than a thousand pork kidney samples, almost no veterinary drug residues were found and none at levels that even approached U. S. regulatory limits, according to a study just published by an Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientist in Food Additives & Contaminants: Part A.
These findings signal that U.S. pork producers are using veterinary compounds properly, and indicate that veterinary drug residues in pork are not posing a health concern to U.S. consumers, according to ARS research chemist Weilin Shelver. Shelver is with the ARS Animal Metabolism-Agricultural Chemicals Research Unit in Fargo, North Dakota.
A total of 1040 pork kidneys were purchased from four grocery stores in the Midwest and tested for residues of 5 commonly used veterinary drugs and feed additives ...
Live-Streaming Barn Tours Show Consumers Sustainable Pig Farming
The National Pork Board is collaborating with South Dakota State University (SDSU) to “open the barn doors” on how pigs are raised. The Pork Checkoff’s Operation Main Street (OMS) speakers can include live-streaming video tours of SDSU’s Swine Education and Research Center, in Brookings, South Dakota, in presentations to local civic groups, culinary and pre-vet students, dietitians, chefs and others.The state-of-the-art SDSU teaching center features all phases of pig production and provides the latest technology for research on reproductive physiology, nutrition management and sustainability science, according to Bob Thaler, SDSU professor and a swine Extension specialist.
“Virtual tours help non-traditional audiences understand today’s pork production,” Thaler said. “Our goal is to demystify how ...
National Pork Board and RIPE.IO Partner to Enhance Pig Farming Practices through Blockchain
The National Pork Board and Ripe Technology, Inc. have entered an agreement to pilot blockchain technology use in the U.S. pork industry.
Through this partnership, ripe.io will enable an ecosystem that will allow pork producers to monitor, evaluate and continuously improve their sustainability practices based on the We CareSM framework – six defined ethical principles guiding the U.S. pork industry. Launched in 2008, these principles provide industry standards in food safety and public health, animal well-being, protecting the environment, and improving the quality of life for the industry’s people and communities. The standards also serve as the pork industry’s commitment to continuous improvement.
“The growing demand across the entire food supply chain – including end consumers – is to ...
NPPC Statement on Illegal Pork Seizure
On March 15, 2019, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that it intercepted a large shipment of illegal pork products from China before it could enter the United States. The contraband shipment, which will be safely and securely destroyed in accordance with U.S. government policy, reportedly contained products derived from pork, such as flavorings in ramen noodles, and did not include fresh meat. It is illegal to import pork products from countries, like China, that are positive for African swine fever (ASF), a disease that only affects pigs and that poses no human health or food safety risks, to the United States. The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) issued the following statement.
“Preventing the spread of African swine fever to the United States is our top priority. We are thankful to CBP and the U.S. Department of Agriculture for their increased vigilance and the expanded resources they have put in place to prevent ...
USDA Strengthens Partnerships and Protections to Keep African Swine Fever Out of the Country
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced additional steps to keep African swine fever (ASF) from entering the United States, even as the disease spreads internationally. These steps strengthen the protections announced last fall after the deadly swine disease reached China. The goal remains to protect our nation’s swine industry from this disease. ASF does not affect people, nor is it a food safety issue.
In coordination with the pork industry, USDA’s Undersecretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs, Greg Ibach, has stated the following enhanced activities to intensify multi-agency efforts toward the prevention of ASF’s entry into the United States ...
ANALYSIS: African Swine Fever in China; Outbreak Update
The outbreak of African Swine Fever in China has placed an ominous cloud of uncertainty over the global pork market, which could in turn impact other protein categories as well.
It cannot be overstated how big of a player China is in the pork market, as it is home to half of the globe’s hogs. At roughly 55 million metric tons, China’s domestic annual pork consumption is nearly as large as all other countries combined (49.7% of global pork consumption in 2018). With that in consideration, any threat to their supply of hogs is deemed quite critical because it has the potential to...
Smithfield Foods Achieves Industry-Leading Environmental Commitment
Smithfield Foods, Inc. is pleased to announce that it has successfully engaged 80 percent of its grain supply chain, which is used to feed the company’s hogs, in farming practices that are both sustainable and reduce the cost of production for grain farmers. This exceeded the company’s original goal of 75 percent. In 2018, Smithfield purchased grain from producers who use efficient fertilizer and soil health methods across approximately 560,000 acres of land.
Grain production is the first step in the vertically integrated company’s supply chain, making this accomplishment one of the key ways Smithfield is working toward its ambitious goal to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions 25 percent by 2025 throughout its entire supply chain – the first commitment of its kind from a protein company.
“This accomplishment is a significant milestone in our company’s holistic approach to reducing carbon emissions across our entire supply chain ...
Gene Editing Development Stalled; NPPC Renews Call for USDA Oversight
Development of an emerging technology promising major animal health and environmental benefits is currently stalled at the U.S. Food & Drug Administration, prompting the National Pork Producers Council to renew its call for U.S. Department of Agriculture regulatory oversight of gene editing for livestock.
“The pace of FDA’s process to develop a regulatory framework for this important innovation only reinforces our belief that the USDA is best equipped to oversee gene editing for livestock production,” said Jim Heimerl, a pork producer from Johnstown, Ohio and president of the National Pork Producers Council. “U.S. agriculture is one our nation’s most successful export products; we can’t afford to cede leadership of gene editing to other countries ...
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