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   TOP STORIES  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   27 April 2015


Chicken sales in Hyderabad down 80%
[27 April 2015]
Chicken sales in Hyderabad, India declined by 80% last weekend due to the H5N1 outbreak in Telangana state. However, sales of chicken and eggs were not affected in the rural areas of the state. S Balasubramaniam, General Manager of Venkateshwara Hatcheries said that during the first four days after the outbreak chicken consumption dropped by 50% and subsequently to 80% last Sunday. It is estimated that the poultry industry in Telangana could have suffered a loss of USD 24 million due to the outbreak.
Japfa Indonesia expects loss in Q1
[27 April 2015]
Japfa Comfeed Indonesia expects to register a net loss in the first quarter of this year. The will be the result of a combination of two main factors. First is the continuing weakness both in the poultry market and in the purchasing power of low-income consumers. And second is the translation loss from the company’s USD loans as a result of the 5% drop in the Rupiah to US Dollar exchange rate as at March 31, 2015. Taking into account the oversupply of broiler DOC, the company said it could not set an ambitious target this year.

KFC China sales still down, poultry sector remains weak
[27 April 2015]
KFC reported Q1 same-store sales in China down 14% from the same period last year, a sign of continuing weakness in the poultry sector following last year’s food scandals and anxiety about avian influenza. Greg Creed, Yum Brands CEO, nevertheless expressed optimism, saying that China sales were recovering from last year’s lows along with “upward momentum in consumer perceptions.” The 14% sales decline represented a slight improvement over 2014 Q4’s 16% sales decline. Sales also declined at Yum’s Pizza Hut operations in China, but only by 6%, and Yum’s overall China sales were down 12%. Mr Creed said Yum remains “on track to open at least 700 new restaurants in China,” and expects a strong second-half performance from the China division.
Sneha Farms expands its hatchery with energy saving technology
[27 April 2015]
India’s Sneha Farms from Hyderabad, will be increasing its commercial broiler operations with an energy conscious expansion to its hatchery. The expansion will bring six SmartSet setters and six SmartHatch hatchers online, with Pas Reform’s ESM (Energy Saving Module) in the setters to reduce energy consumption, as annual capacity increases to a total of 13 million set eggs. Varun Reddy Dendi, Sneha Farms Director, commented that the project presents the right opportunity to expand operations using the latest technologies from Pas Reform. Natarajan Venkitakrishnan, Pas Reform Sales Director for India, told Asian Agribiz that even during trials Sneha Farms was satisfied with the performance of Pas Reform’s ESM technology that helped them reduce energy consumption.


AGCO acquires Farmer Automatic
[27 April 2015]
AGCO, a worldwide manufacturer and distributor of agricultural equipment, has acquired Farmer Automatic from The Clark Companies. The sale includes Farmer Automatic’s manufacturing operations in Laer, Germany as well as its global distribution network. Tom Welke, GSI Senior Vice President for Global Grain and Protein, said that they are excited to be adding Farmer Automatic to the AGCO family. “Farmer Automatic will enable GSI to move into the commercial egg business and provide a full-line solution for our poultry customers,” he said. Farmer Automatic products will continue to be sold through their present distribution channels. It will remain a stand-alone company and will be integrated into GSI over time.
Southeast Asian markets take more sheepmeat
[27 April 2015]
Lamb and mutton exports to Southeast Asian markets improved for most countries during the last quarter, Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) reported. Sheepmeat export volumes increased by 19% to 6815 tonnes into Malaysia and lifted by 9% into Singapore to total to 2541 tonnes, but were lower into Vietnam. MLA said total Australian red meat (beef, lamb, mutton, goat and offal) shipments declined by 7% to 28,441 tonnes into Singapore, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, Brunei, Cambodia and Myanmar during the March quarter, but were higher than the five-year average of 21,344 tonnes.
McDonald’s closing hundreds of stores
[27 April 2015]
McDonald’s closed 350 stores in early 2015, on top of the 350 it had already said it would shutter, as the burger purveyor seeks to stanch sales declines, reported Fortune. The company shuttered 350 poorly performing stores in Japan, the US, and China the first three months of 2015 as part of its plan to boost its sagging profits. The previously unannounced closings, disclosed during a conference call with Wall Street analysts, are on top of the 350 closures targeted for the year. While the 700 store closings this year represent a fraction of the 32,500 or so restaurants worldwide, it shows how aggressive McDonald’s is getting in pruning poorly attended locations that are dragging down its results. Recently the company reported an 11% decrease in revenue and a 30% drop in profit for the first three months of the year.

Global pork prices drop
[24 April 2015]
Pork prices in the global market were down sharply in the first quarter this year, Rabobank said in its Pork Quarterly Q2 Report, noting “robust global supply growth, driven by US, Russia and Brazil, has outpaced rather subdued demand.” On the other hand pork prices in China, which bottomed out in March this year, are expected to go up and “will offer opportunities for considerable export growth” into the second half of the year. Albert Vernooij, Rabobank’s Industry Analyst for Animal Protein, told Asian Agribiz that “based on the current exchange rates and availability, European countries like Germany, Denmark, Netherlands, Spain, as well as Brazil are best positioned to take advantage of this development in China’s market, but added that the US and Canada will increase exports. Mr Vernooij also noted that rising production and steady demand in Vietnam and the Philippines, the two key pork markets in Southeast Asia, would mean no major changes in their import volumes.
Vietnam top buyer of US soy
[24 April 2015]
In the last marketing year 2013/14 the US became the largest exporter of soybeans to Vietnam, surpassing Brazil, said the USDA Gain report, reaching close to 700,000 tonnes, 26% over the previous year. In the current marketing year exports are expected to reach about 750,000 tonnes as Vietnam’s domestic crushing is set to increase. Soybean meal imports meanwhile, were 3.64 million tonnes, a 14% increase in demand from the animal and aquaculture feed industries. The report noted that Vietnam’s oilseed production continues to fall below demand from the food industry and the livestock and aquaculture feed sectors due to low yield and strong competition from other field crops such as corn. “The competition will get even fiercer in the future as the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has approved the first corn biotech events for commercial cultivation.
US, Brazil, Japan meat producers’ eye Myanmar market
[24 April 2015]
Meat exporters from the US, Brazil and Japan are looking to export quality meat to Myanmar. Their representatives are in talks with Myanmar’s Meat Industry Board, said U Win Sein, Vice Chairperson of Myanmar Livestock Federation. “The US is set to exempt tariffs on fishery or garment exports from our country, and we will also have to allow their meat exports,” he was quoted by Myanmar Business Today. “This won’t be a problem [for local players] if the imported meat are more expensive than local products. However, we need to be careful to prevent low quality products being imported at low prices,” he added. Currently, high-quality pork and beef imported for the hospitality industry.

Prantalay launches new fish snack 
[24 April 2015]
Prantalay Marketing, a manufacturer and distributor of frozen seafood products and ready-to-eat foods in Thailand has introduced a snack product made from fish. Realising the value of the snack market of around USD 926 million a year, Chief Marketing Officer Anurat Khokasai said the company sees opportunity for its product named ‘Niji’ which is different from other meat snack products. The fish is tempura-coated, baked then deep-fried using a system that absorbs less oil.  The company has invested around USD 3.1 million to acquire this innovative cooking machinery from Japan and will have a production capacity at 1 million packs per month.
Suryamitra Exim achieves four star BAP status
[24 April 2015]
Andhra Pradesh based Suryamitra Exim Pvt Ltd has achieved the four star Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) status, an international third party certification for shrimp, the Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA) announced. Four star BAP status, the highest achievement in the BAP program denotes that the processing plants, farms, hatcheries and feedmills of the group are BAP certified. The effort was coordinated by US based National Fish and Seafood (NFS), a national supplier and partner of seafood in the US, which sources shrimp from Suryamitra. Suryamitra is the second Indian company to be four status BAP rated, the first one being Kerala based Penver Products Pvt Ltd.
PPA seeks no increase in quarantine rates
[24 April 2015]
Pakistan Poultry Association (PPA) has urged the Federal Government to withdraw the proposed raise in quarantine rates as it will adversely affect poultry exports. Pakistan’s Ministry of National Food and Research increased quarantine rates on export of DOC and table eggs. PPA North Zone Chairman Dr Muhammad Mustafa Kamal said that the export of table eggs to Afghanistan will suffer and so will the poultry sector. According to reports, the ministry has also issued a warning to exporters saying that their facilities will be closed if the fee for quarantine is not paid. The Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry (LCCI) has also termed the increase in quarantine rates as exorbitant.
Andhra Pradesh bans poultry products from Telangana
[24 April 2015]
Andhra Pradesh government in India has banned entry of poultry products from Telangana in the wake of the H5N1 outbreak last week. Andhra Pradesh Animal Husbandry Department’s Director P D Kondal Rao said that they have deployed six teams to the border with Telangana to stop the movement. “We are now stopping vehicles carrying poultry feed in addition to DOC, birds and eggs as there is a possibility that poultry feed could also be infected,” Mr Rao said. According to him, the ban may remain in place for around a month.
Teo Seng to expand in line with local egg consumption
[23 April 2015]
Malaysian integrated layer company Teo Seng Capital Bhd, the country’s third largest egg producer by volume, expects per capita egg consumption in Malaysia to grow 3-5% this year from the current 36.5 million eggs per day, reported The Edge. Its Non-Executive Director Tan Sri Francis Lau Tuang Nguang said the average price of eggs has remained stable for the past six months at about 35 sen, or USD 0.09, and is projected to remain stable. The company said it hopes to spend USD 55 million to grow its capacity by 67% to produce 5 million eggs/day in the next four to five years. The group is also targeting to increase its market share to 10% in four years from 6.5% presently. About one-third of eggs produced by Teo Seng are exported to Singapore and the group expects to maintain that percentage.
Retail price of beef up in Bangladesh
[23 April 2015]
With the Indian government stopping smuggling of cattle into Bangladesh, retail price of beef in Bangladesh has gone up. “Price of beef in Bangladesh has gone up by 30% due to heightened vigil by the Border Security Force against cattle smuggling,” Mujibur Rahman, a beef trader in Bangladesh told Asian Agribiz. According to the state-run Trading Corporation of Bangladesh which monitors commodity prices, beef is now being sold at USD 4.5/kg against USD 3.8/kg in March. “The price rise is also due to frequent blockade and strikes that has disrupted supply,” Mr Rahman said.
SFI, BRF create jv company in Singapore
[23 April 2015]
Singapore Food Industries (SFI) has entered into a joint venture with Brazil’s BRF GmbH to set up a company in Singapore to process meat and manufacture branded food products for distribution to retailers, restaurants, wholesalers, distributors and ship chandlers. The jv company, called Sats BRF Food, will see SFI contribute a sublease of two meat processing facilities and a warehouse, the machinery related to the processing facilities and a licence agreement for the use of certain brands and trademarks in Singapore. Sats BRF will focus on expanding the supply of high value-added, semi-processed meat and further processed food products, initially for the Singapore market, said Augusto Riberiro Junior, Chief Financial and Investor Relations Officer, BRF, in a press release. SFI will hold a 51% stake in the jv.
Cargill, Monsanto, BRI collaborate in boosting corn production
[23 April 2015]
A public-private partnership between Cargill, Monsanto and Bank Rakyat Indonesia (BRI) since 2012 aims to double Indonesia’s corn production capacity in the wake of the government’s food self-sufficiency program. Jean-Louis Guillou, Cargill Indonesia President Director, said: “We can help boost Indonesia’s corn production. With the right guidance and technology, we can achieve 7-8 tonnes/ha from 3-4 tonnes/ha now.” Indonesia’s Partnership for Sustainable Agriculture was formed in 2012 and the pilot project began with 100 farmers in June last year in Jrambe village, Mojokerto in East Java. Monsanto distributed its high-quality seeds while BRI facilitated finance to the farmers. The lender spent USD 23,500 on working capital credit. The farmers then sold their crops to Cargill.
Jeil Feed, InVivo sign 2nd partnership pact
[23 April 2015]
Korean feed producer Jeil Feed has extended for a year a partnership agreement with French animal nutrition firm InVivo NSA which sees the Korean company gaining knowledge, assistance and technical support. The contract was signed by Yoon Ha Un, CEO of Jeil Feed, and Hubert de Roquefeuil, CEO of InVivo NSA, in Daejeon, South Korea. Doctor Jin Park, Pig Species Manager for Jeil Feed said after two years of successful cooperation, Jeil Feed decided to reiterate its trust in InVivo’s zootechnical expertise. “This allows us to work with InVivo to enhance our know-how in r&d and innovation,” he said. Jeil Feed produces 1.4 million tonnes of feed per year with a turnover of USD 535 million. The company, which recently invested in a pet food plant in Korea, belongs to the Harim Group.
McDonald’s Japan expects sales to fall 10%
[23 April 2015]
McDonald’s in Japan is expecting another bad year. The 49%-owned subsidiary of the American fast food giant expects an operating loss of around USD 210 million in 2015, more than triple its losses last year, according to Quartz. The company also expects sales to fall 10% in what will be the seventh consecutive year of declines. In hopes of making a profit again in 2016, the company will close about 131 outlets and renovate another 2000. It also plans to cut about 100 jobs at its headquarters in Tokyo. As for the food, the chain has pledged stop importing chicken from China, and it has rolled out a faux chicken nugget made from tofu: the “Tofu Shinjo Nugget.”
CPF seeks shareholders’ approval for Cambodia project
[22 April 2015]
Thailand’s Charoen Pokphand Foods (CPF) will seek approval from its shareholders at its annual general meeting today for its plan to increase investments in Cambodia.  CPF’s Board agreed earlier to acquire a 75% stake in C.P. Cambodia Company Limited (CPC) for USD 87.87 million as it is deemed beneficial to CPF as Cambodia’s agro-industrial and food business have strong potential for growth. “The Board feels this investment will benefit shareholders as it corresponds with to the core strategy of the company and the agro industry sector in Cambodia, especially the livestock segment, holds great growth potential,” said CPF’s President and Chief Executive Officer Adirek Sripratak.
Cargill considering poultry investments in Indonesia
[22 April 2015]
Cargill Inc. is seeking to enter the Indonesian poultry sector reported the Wall Street Journal. The Minnesota-based company is “in active discussions” to enter the poultry sector in Indonesia, which will include building a new facility and likely partnering, said Alan Willits, Cargill Chairman for Asia Pacific. “We’ll most likely partner with someone that is an integrated poultry producer, and we’ll do the value-added piece, the same thing we do in Thailand and China,” Mr Willits said. He also said the company is “very interested” in entering aquaculture in Asia. “We’ll most likely buy a global company that” could have a presence in Indonesia, he said. He added that the company could consider investing hundreds of millions in building a large-scale corn-processing facility, but would likely need assurances about importing some amount of corn.
SRP for chicken set at USD 2.49/kg
[22 April 2015]
The Philippine Department of Agriculture (DA) has set the new suggested retail price for chicken at USD 2.49/kg in Metro Manila, the biggest market in the country. The new SRP, which took effect on Monday, is meant to better reflect the prices at the farm level. According to the United Broiler Raisers Association’s price survey, the average farm price of live chicken in Luzon is USD 1.48/kg, up from USD 1.14/kg the previous week. DA Undersecretary for livestock Jose Reaño said that with the new SRP, prices of chicken in both public markets and supermarkets have improved. Last week, the prevailing retail price was about USD 2.71/kg.
After Telangana, H5N1 hits Manipur
[22 April 2015]
A week after the outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N1 in Telangana state in India, avian influenza has surfaced in the north eastern state of Manipur. Samples taken from the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) poultry unit at Lamphelpat was found to contain the H5N1 strain. “So far around 1000 birds have been culled within a one-km radius of the poultry unit by the State Veterinary and Animal Husbandry Services Department,” Manipur Chief Secretary P.C. Lawmkunga said. According to him, culling will continue and steps have been taken by the government to control the outbreak.

Web special
Indian dairy sector in upgrade mode
[22 April 2015]

With Indian dairy companies securing funds for expansion through IPO's and the government's help in boosting dairy exports, the Indian dairy industry is in an interesting phase of growth. In this special web report, SM ARUN takes a look at the latest developments in the Indian dairy industry, which is growing at a faster pace than ever.

Growth of 15% in 2015-16
The Indian dairy sector is expected to continue its robust performance in 2015-16 with an impressive 15.6% growth, according to a report by India Ratings & Research (Ind-Ra). “During the same period, milk production is forecasted to grow at 4.6%. The sector will remain one of the focus areas of the government to improve the economic wellbeing of the rural population,” the report said. According to Ind-Ra, demand for milk and milk-based products remained high due to changing dietary habits and rising incomes. “Domestic price of milk has remained firm despite the collapse of global milk and dairy product prices,” the report added. The cooperative sector especially, continues to get policy and monetary support from the government, ensuring its growth.

Potential in Russian markets
After Russia opened its market to Indian buffalo meat, expectations are high that the country will open its market to Indian dairy products. Private dairy player Parag Milk Foods Pvt Ltd which has India’s largest cheese production unit with a capacity of 40 tonnes/day, is bullish about exports to Russia. “Russian demand is huge and it presents attractive potential if this market accepts our products," Mr Devendra Shah, Chairman told Asian Agribiz. In October-November 2014, a team from Russia’s phytosanitary watchdog Rosselkhoznadzor visited India to inspect dairy units but no approval has been secured yet.

Strategy required to boost dairy exports
India’s Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry has asked the dairy sector to prepare strategy paper to boost dairy exports. Even though India is the world’s largest producer of milk and has huge potential for exports, the government is concerned over the drop in exports due to quality issues. According to a report, the sector is unable to meet stringent export quality parameters as around 80% of the dairy industry in India is unorganised. The Ministry recently convened a meeting of representatives including Amul to discuss export challenges. “The dairy industry is expected to submit the paper soon and the government will take appropriate steps to encourage export of dairy exports after deliberating on the recommendations,” a statement from the Ministry said.

Prabhat Dairy to raise USD48m through IPO
Maharashtra based Prabhat Dairy Ltd, an integrated milk and dairy products company has filed for an initial public offering (IPO) with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI). The IPO comprises a fresh issue of shares to raise USD 48 million in addition to an offer for sale of up to 14.7 million equity shares. With this, investors such as Rabo India PE and French DFI Proparco are set to part exit. Prabhat Dairy’s products include toned and raw chilled milk, sterilised condensed milk, milk powder, lassi, butter and ghee. It also supplies dairy based food ingredients to multinationals and Indian food and beverage companies like Abbott Healthcare, Mondelez (maker of Cadbury) and Britannia among others.

Mother Dairy forays into dairy whitener market
India’s Mother Dairy, a wholly owned subsidiary of National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) has ventured into the dairy whitener market with the launch of its brand ‘Dailycious’ in Guwahati. Subhashis Basu, Business Head for dairy products, Mother Dairy Fruit & Vegetable Pvt Ltd told Asian Agribiz that they have plans to expand in the entire North East region. “Dailycious will be made available through a wide network of distribution channels of close to 10,000 retail outlets across the region,” he said. Dairy whitener segment is a USD 320 million market in India and the company will compete with dominant brands like 'Everyday' of Nestle and 'Amulya' of Amul in this market segment.

Amul launches poly pack milk in Punjab
Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF), which markets milk and other dairy products under the Amul brand in India recently launched poly pack milk in Punjab state. GCMMF Managing Director R S Sodhi said that they have identified Punjab as an opportune market for their fresh product offerings. “We will be selling pouch milk at affordable prices to brand conscious consumers in Amritsar, Pathankot, Gurdaspur and Batala towns in Punjab and looking to garner 20% market share in these areas,” he said. Amul sells around 10.5 million litres per day of pouch milk across India.

Milk price hike unviable due to global trends, Amul
Talks about increasing the milk price locally has been ruled out as global trends are not favourable to it. R S Sodhi, Managing Director of Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF), which markets Amul brand of milk and other dairy products said that since global milk prices are 40-50% lower than Indian milk prices any further hike will see a rise in imported milk or powdered milk. “Unlike private players, cooperatives are not under any margin pressure and could hold on to current prices,” he said and added that GCMMF is of the view that other players in the organised sector too might hold on to price levels. The last time GCMMF raised milk prices was in May last year.

Kanemory's ready meal plant starts operations
[21 April 2015]
Kanemory Food Service, a joint-venture company between Japan-based Kanematsu Group and Indonesia-based Cimory Group, has put its USD 31 million ready meals plant in Cikande, Banten province – Indonesia into operation. Axel Sutantio, Vice President, said the plant is able to produce 10 tonnes/day for one ready meal item, while the installed capacity is around 27,000 tonnes/month. Around 90 items of ready meals are produced at the plant, such as meatballs, sausages, satay, and ready meals based on meat, fish, vegetables and rice in Japanese and Western styles. The products are sold in convenience stores, supermarkets, hypermarkets and restaurants. Mr Axel is optimistic that the company will be able to generate sales of around USD 8 million in the next three years.
160,000 birds culled in Telangana state in India
[21 April 2015]
Following the outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N1 in Telangana state in India last week, animal husbandry officials have culled around 160,000 birds. D Venkateswarlu, State Animal Husbandry Director told Asian Agribiz that birds in a one km radius of the village in Ranga Reddy district have been culled and over 230,000 eggs destroyed. “We have now shifted our focus to a 10 km radius surveillance zone and we will conduct regular checks on poultry,” he said. According to estimates, poultry population in the surveillance zone in 18 villages is estimated to be around 1.3 million.
CJ eyes stake in Vietnam food processing company
[21 April 2015]
CJ Cheiljedang Corp (CJ), a South Korean conglomerate and manufacturer of processed food, is reportedly interested in picking up a strategic stake in the Vietnamese state-owned food company Vissan, when the latter goes for an initial public offering (IPO), reported DealStreetAsia, a regional business portal. Vissan, has been operating for 45 years, and its latest financials reveal average annual sales of USD 209 million. It is known for Vissan sausage and ham products in the local market. Meanwhile, CJ is already present in Vietnam through CJ Vina Agri Co Ltd, which focuses on animal feeds.
Japfa Indonesia cancels its export plan to Japan
[21 April 2015]
Japfa Comfeed Indonesia has said that it plans to cancel its plan to export further processed chicken products to Japan. Koesbyanto Setyadharma, Director, said the company doesn’t want to add more pressure to its operations since investment for the exports is high risk. “We once exported our products in 2003 but then Japan banned imports from Indonesia due to avian influenza. We experienced losses because of the ban.” Moreover, he added that the export volume to the Japanese market is small. During its public expose, meanwhile, Bambang Budi Hendarto, Vice President Director, mentioned that the company is in talks with some countries to export DOC. However Mr Bambang did not disclose what countries they are.
DA to post farm prices in retail markets
[21 April 2015]
The Philippine Department of Agriculture (DA) said it will post farm prices of chicken and hogs in retail markets so consumers will know if these commodities are being sold at reasonable prices. In a statement, DA Undersecretary for Livestock Jose Reaño said the DA will post either daily or every-other-day the farm price of chicken. This will allow consumers to question retailers if the prices are much higher than farm prices. He noted that the reasonable retail price for chicken should be only about USD 1/kg more than the farm price. According to the United Broiler Raisers Association, average farm price of chicken is currently around USD 1.14/kg.
Sabah to produce prawns worth USD 282m by 2020
[21 April 2015]
Malaysia’s Sabah state could emerge as the nation’s biggest producer of prawns by 2020. By then the state is expected to produce prawns valued at USD 828 million annually. This follows the USD 309 million invested by four companies to spur the shrimp aquaculture, with 30% of contributed by the Federal Government. “The price of white shrimp is between USD 7.50-8.50/kg. The estimated production of these four companies will be about 110,870 tonnes until 2020,” said Datuk Bobby Ahfang Suan, State Agriculture and Food Industry Assistant Minister. “In 2013, Sabah produced around 11,700 tonnes worth USD 51.66 million of white shrimp. Last year production increased to 18,900 tonnes worth USD 88.65 million, a 38% increase. This year, production is estimated at 30,000 tonnes,” he said.
Taiwan has no plan to lift ban on US pork imports
[21 April 2015]
Taiwan has no plan to lift its current ban on imports of US pork containing the leanness-enhancing drug ractopamine, a Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Mofa) official said. Kelly Hsieh, head of Mofa’s Department of North American Affairs, yesterday said at a regular news briefing that Taiwan's government has no plan to change the ban despite US’ repeated concerns. “We will continue to talk to our US counterparts to make clear our stance,” he said, when asked to comment on remarks made by two US senior officials' last month who said that Taiwan needs to resolve issues surrounding the import of US meat products to speed up its push to join the US-led Trans-Pacific Partnership.
Halal abattoir in the Philippines nears completion
[20 April 2015]
The first halal slaughterhouse in the Philippines is almost completed and will soon be operating, the Philippine Department of Agriculture (DA) said. The facility, located in Cotabato City in Mindanao, will have a slaughtering capacity of 15 heads of cattle, 10 heads of carabao, and 40 heads of goat per hour. DA Secretary Proceso Alcala said that the slaughterhouse will initially have an AA rating. With this rating, it will be allowed to send products all over the Philippines. However, the DA plans to upgrade the facility later to an AAA rating so it can be accredited to process meat for export.
InVivo Indonesia to offer complete range of aqua feed
[20 April 2015]
InVivo Indonesia aims to be a leader in aqua feed in the country. Alain Symoens, Country Manager, told Asian Agribiz that the company recently ventured into the hatchery feed market. The company provides larval feed both for fish and shrimp that are sold under the BernAqua brand. In addition, Mr Symoens revealed that it will also venture into the marine fish feed market. “Our strategy is to offer a complete range of products that help our Indonesian partners realise better production, efficiency and profits.” He said that its freshwater fish feed sold under the Ocialis brand has progressed well in the market.
Cambodia drafts standards for feed production
[20 April 2015]
The Institute of Statistics Cambodia has issued draft standards on chicken and duck feed production, aimed at bringing the products in line with international standards and helping producers increase exports. The new guidelines will give the products international recognition because they will specify how they should be produced and processed, therefore adding value. Chan Borin, Director General of the Institute of Statistics Cambodia, said once the standards are in place, the process of negotiating export of the products will be easier,” said. “It will help to boost trade and encourage farmers to expand the production.” The draft documents must be approved by the National Standards Council within 30 days of their issuing on April 6. Public comments may be submitted during that period.
China pork price rises at last
[20 April 2015]
After falling almost continuously since September 2014, China’s pork price has finally reversed course and risen slightly in the last three weeks, according to the Ministry of Commerce’s weekly commodity price report. Although the total rise so far is only 2%, the beginning of a price recovery is a relief to hard-pressed farmers who have faced negative margins due to oversupply for more than a year. Live pig prices have also recovered slightly over the last three weeks in the major producing provinces of Shandong, Henan, Hebei, and Hunan, according to a compilation by Carthage & MHJ, a swine consultancy based in Suzhou. Consumption has declined due to the government’s austerity program and a weakening economy. In the last two years, millions of sows have been slaughtered and the herd’s overall size has shrunk significantly.
India plugs cattle smuggling into Bangladesh
[20 April 2015]
Following orders from Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, India’s Border Security Force (BSF) has stopped smuggling of cattle into Bangladesh. According to Mr Singh, the government had set up a committee to check smuggling of cattle, drugs and fake Indian currency notes. “It is more important to ensure security at the border by putting an end to all smuggling activities,” he said recently. Around 170,000 cattle were smuggled to Bangladesh from India in 2014. The move was initiated by the Indian government in the wake of killing of three BSF soldiers by smugglers in different incidents.
H5N1 outbreak triggers alert in Telangana
[20 April 2015]
An outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza has been confirmed at a poultry farm in the outskirts of Hyderabad in India. Following the confirmation by the High Security Animal Disease Laboratory (HSADL) in Bhopal, the Telangana government has ordered to cull as many as 145,000 poultry birds in a one km radius. The site of infection is Srinivas Reddy’s poultry farm located in Ranga Reddy district, which is about 50 km from Hyderabad. A ban on trading of all poultry products from farms in a 10-km radius 'surveillance zone' has also been put in place.
Asian demand for live cattle export continues
[20 April 2015]
Australia exported almost 101,000 head of live cattle in February, up 29% year-on-year in trade. The trade has continued to increase following record levels in 2014, with February marking the fourth consecutive month of year-on-year growth. Indonesia remained the largest market, taking almost 47,000 head during the month, while Vietnam received over 35,000 head. With the Indonesian market constrained to a 100,000-head quota in the first quarter (68,000 head were sent to Indonesia during the first two months of the year) of 2015, it was encouraging that the second quarter quota is at 250,000 head. Strong Asian demand has translated into improved live export cattle prices. In February, light steers out of Darwin averaged 273 cents a kg live weight, up 19% year-on-year.
Japfa Indonesia halves capital expenditure
[17 April 2015]
Japfa Comfeed Indonesia has decided to scale down its operations as a sluggish market continues to dampen its sales. Bambang Budi Hendarto, Vice President Director, said the company will cut its capital expenditure this year mostly that allocated for production and expansion, by up to 50%, down to around USD 58.6 million. Mr Bambang said that the oversupply has severely hit the local DOC market as the demand for chickens from customers had yet to show improvement. With such a situation, DOC and other broiler prices remain depressed. However, he said that the company’s feed division still generated stable profits, helping the company to reduce the losses suffered by the breeding division.
Astra Agro to venture into cattle farming
[17 April 2015]
Indonesia’s major plantation company Astra Agro Lestari, a subsidiary of Astra International, is set to venture into cattle farming in an effort to diversify its business. Widya Wiryawan, President Director, said the company is assessing the possibility of entering the cattle-breeding business. “It may go hand-in-hand with our existing palm oil plantation, creating business synergy. We have many flat plantation sites that may suit the cattle’s needs,” he said. At present, Astra Agro’s plantation sites are scattered across the country, but most of them are located in Kalimantan and Sulawesi. Mr Widya acknowledged that cattle farming will provide a new business opportunity for the company, citing the government’s ambition to achieve national beef self-sufficiency.
Japanese firm to invest USD9b in Andhra Pradesh
[17 April 2015]
Japan’s Mayekawa Manufacturing Company based in Tokyo is looking to invest USD 9 billion in Andhra Pradesh state in India to support the food processing sector. The move is expected to give a major boost to the poultry sector in Andhra Pradesh. Recently, a Japanese delegation led by Chairman of Mayekawa Manufacturing Company Yoshiro Tanaka visited Andhra Pradesh and explored opportunities to construct a mega food park that would facilitate technology transfer between Indian and Japanese companies.
Research brings vaccine against ASFV a step closer
[17 April 2015]
Research work headed by Dr Fernando Rodriguez, IRTA researcher from the CReSA Animal Health Program, demonstrates the feasibility of designing a safe and efficient vaccine against African swine fever virus (ASFV) in the near future. There is no vaccine available today to fight ASF. The study confirmed the presence of multiple potential vaccine candidates. Specifically identifying them will allow developing safe and efficient subunit vaccines in the future. “This work opens the door to the possibility of obtaining an efficient and safe vaccine against ASFV in the near future” said Dr Rodriguez. “Identifying as many protective antigens as possible between those proteins codified by ASFV will allow designing an optimal vaccine formulation. It is just a matter of time, investment and willingness.”

2015 US Dairy Business Conference, Singapore
On –site report from CRAIGE ALLEN
[17 April 2015]

Hosted by the US Dairy Export Council (USDEC) the US Dairy Business Conference attracted stakeholders from all sectors of the dairy value chain from throughout Southeast Asia. This is the first time the conference was held in Asia, recognising the region’s growing demand for dairy products.  Asean is the second largest market for US dairy products, with sales of USD 1.322 billion in 2014 (+3% year-on-year).  A common theme of the presentations and panel discussions was that while historically the image of the US has been that of a commodity supplier of dairy products, USDEC is changing rapidly and becoming more responsive to the specific market needs in terms of what ingredients customers want. 
Looking ahead: US position in the global dairy market
USDEC President, Thomas Suber was confident that “despite the current situation, in the long-term, the supply of dairy products will be constrained to meet demand.  Furthermore he said that despite the recent lifting of EU quotas, with the exception of Ireland, which like New Zealand is a pasture-based production system, the EU does not have the additional feed capacity, and this will hamper their long-term supply capability.  The US, however, has a cost of production advantage, primarily due to lower cost of feed.  The EU also faces land and environmental constraints”, he said
US largest producer of cow’s milk
The average US dairy herd size in 2014 was 204 cows, with an average production of 10,100kg/cow/year. “Last year about 35% of US milk was produced by herds of more than 2,000 cows and 50% from herds of more than 1,000 cows” noted Mr Suber. He said the US is the largest single-country producer of cow’s milk, producing 93.4 million tonnes in 2014.

Expanding offerings to meet Southeast Asian demand
Marc A.H. Beck, Executive VP Strategy & Insights, USDEC provided perspectives on what the evolution of the US dairy product portfolio and plant expansions means for customers in Southeast Asia.  He stressed the strategic importance of Southeast Asia and that the US wants to be a preferred supplier.  In 2014 the global dairy market was estimated to be more than USD 19 billion in value, with Southeast Asia being the largest market with about 36% share, more than double China. 'It’s not only about selling more products, but how we provide business solutions, which deliver growth opportunities for ourselves and our business partners,” said Mr Beck.
Investment in innovation for continued growth
The US is the largest single-country exporter of whey and lactose ingredients, and also a rising exporter of milk powders and milk proteins, commented Vikki Nicholson, Senior VP Global Marketing, USDEC.  She said that the US was committed to innovation to meeting customers’ growing needs.  The major trends driving this innovation are; healthy ageing, childhood health, chronic disease risk and sports nutrition.  'For example, beginning at about age 40 we begin to lose 0.5% muscle mass every year, and whey proteins can help mitigate this loss.”
Maximising value with permeate
Food and beverage manufacturers are always looking for functional and nutritional ingredients that can also help their bottom line.  Kimberlee J. Burrington, Dairy Ingredients Applications Coordinator, Wisconsin Centre for Dairy Research said that “permeate is one of the sleeping giants in the dairy industry and we are only just starting to tap its potential as a food ingredient.  Besides cost reduction, permeate offers other benefits, such as moisture retention, browning properties, protein enhancement and reduction of sodium”.  As a rule of thumb, Ms Burrington recommended “that the addition of 11g of permeate will allow a reduction of 1g of salt.”

Chicken sales in India to be stable in summer
[16 April 2015]
Following the ban on sale of beef in India's Maharashtra and Haryana states, demand for chicken is likely to be stable this summer. Valsan Parameswaran, Secretary of All India Poultry Exporters Association told Asian Agribiz that even though drastic increase in chicken sales is not expected, the ban is likely to influence consumer preference. “Usually, chicken consumption drops during summer months in India but this year due to the beef ban in these two states, the market is expected to be steady,” he said.
Pakistan poultry industry calls for review of FTAs
[16 April 2015]
Pakistan Poultry Association (PPA) has urged Commerce Minister Khurram Dastagir to review the free trade agreements (FTAs) with Malaysia, India and China to help the local poultry industry. Khalil Sattar, Chairman Tariff and Taxation Committee of PPA stated that Pakistan has opened up its market by allowing poultry products to be imported free of duty and sales tax. “But these trading partners have not reciprocated and use non-tariff barriers to discourage imports from Pakistan,” Mr Sattar said. According to him, India has placed all poultry products under ‘Sensitive list’, a non-tariff barrier, which prevents exports to the country. He also pointed out that these FTAs are hurting the local poultry industry.
Food Panda and Korea’s BBQ Chicken to expand in Vietnam
[16 April 2015]
Food ordering platform Food Panda and the Vietnam-based unit of South Korea’s BBQ Chicken in Vietnam have forged an exclusive shipping agreement. The cooperation allows customers to access the services and promotion programs in the entire BBQ Chicken Vietnam system. Food Panda entered the Vietnamese market in 2012. It has connected nearly 20 franchises and 800 restaurants including popular brands of Al Fresco’s, Baskin Robbins, Burger King, Jollibee and Subway. By cooperating with the South Korean fast food chain, it is targeting a broader presence in the north of Vietnam, where BBQ Chicken is better known than Burger King, Jollibee or Subway.
TET 2015 sees 10% rise in pigs slaughtered
[16 April 2015]
Vietnam's demand for pork just before TET (the New Year) this year was higher than estimated. “There was an adequate supply of pork,” said Ron Lane, Business Director for Asia Pacific, and Meggie Vo, Genesus Marketing Representative in Vietnam. According to the Department of Livestock, during TET it was estimated that the total number of slaughtered pigs was about 4.2 to 4.5 million nationwide, equivalent to about 310,000 tonnes of pork. This is an increase of over 10% compared with the average number of pigs slaughtered each month. For March and April, pork supplies will continue to hold steady. According to the Department of Animal Husbandry, between June to July, annual meat consumption should decline, but still remain on average, from 3.5-4 million pigs/month.
Senepol-cross steers outperform Brahmans
[16 April 2015]
A beef researcher with Australia’s Northern Territory Department of Primary Industry (DPI) said Senepol-Brahman cross cattle are showing distinct production advantages for both northern cattle producers and Indonesian importers. The DPI has been studying the benefits of breeding Brahmans with Senepol bulls, and recently sold a number of crossbred and straight Brahman steers to an Indonesian buyer and their weight gain was tracked over 121 days in an Indonesian feedlot. Coordinator of the Beef Research Program for the DPI, Tim Schatz, said on average, the Senepol-cross steers put on an extra 21 kg compared to the straight Brahman steers. “There has been this perception that that high-grade Brahmans do better in Indonesian feedlots,” he said. “What we found was the Senepol-cross steers outperformed the Brahmans.”
InVivo Indonesia to increase market share in poultry feed
[15 April 2015]
InVivo Indonesia plans to increase its market share in poultry feed. Alain Symoens, Country Manager, told Asian Agribiz that although competition is rife, the target is achievable. Several strategies have been prepared. For broilers it plans to launch an innovative pre-starter feed called Genesa in June. Fed to chicks from day 1 to 5, Genesa is designed to optimise the development of the chicks, improve feed intake & viability, and enhance flock uniformity. To support and provide its broiler customers with good quality DOC, it will also cooperate with local DOC producers. Meanwhile for layers, the company plans to launch Perfegg in September following several local trials. Perfegg is a vegetal active substances-based feed additive to increase egg production. “Layer farmers don’t need to reformulate as the product can be used on-top,” said Mr Symoens. He also revealed that the company is now eyeing local feed companies for acquisition to support its target on growing market share.
Too early to predict impact of beef ban on chicken sales
[15 April 2015]
With two Indian states Maharashtra and Haryana banning sale of beef, speculation is high that consumption of chicken would increase in the coming months. M K Gupta, General Manager (North Zone), Venky’s told Asian Agribiz that it is too early to predict as consumer preference can be rigid. “It will take some time for the government decision to reach ground level,” he said adding that it all depends on how consumers are going to substitute beef in their menu. According to him, there are multiple choices for consumers such as mutton and seafood apart from chicken.
US stops shrimp from five Asian countries
[15 April 2015]
Information released by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) showed that over one in three of the 155 seafood import entry lines refusals in March took place for reasons related to veterinary drug residues. The FDA reported that 58 entry lines were refused for banned antibiotics in March. With the March refusals, the FDA reports having refused 140 shrimp entry lines in 2015. In March, shrimp from Malaysia, India, Vietnam, China, and Indonesia were refused for reasons related to veterinary drug residues.
Aman Feed gets IPO nod
[15 April 2015]
Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission has given the green light to Aman Feed to raise USD 9.3 million from the public. The feed producer plans to float 257,000 ordinary shares worth USD 0.13 each at an offer price of USD 0.46, with USD 0.33 as premium, the stock market regulator said in a statement. Aman Feed will use the funds from the initial public offering (IPO) for business expansion and long-term loan repayment. Aman Feed is primarily engaged in producing and distributing poultry, fish, shrimp and cattle feed. At present, the company's production capacity is 6000 tonnes a month.
McDonald’s Japan’s sales in March fall 29.3%
[15 April 2015]
McDonald’s sales in Japan fell a startling 29.3% in March. Sales in Japan have now fallen for fourteen consecutive months, according to Bloomberg data. The stretch of unsavoury results for McDonals’s Japan, which boasts about 3100 restaurants, follows a series of high-profile food scares in Asia in 2014. Objects including a human tooth and a piece of vinyl were found in McDonald’s food in Japan. Those issues came just months after McDonald’s sales in China took a hit after Chinese supplier Shanghai Husi Food Co. was accused of selling expired meat. But while sales in China have recovered somewhat, in Japan they haven’t, suggesting deeper problems there.
Change needed in Indonesia's cattle permits system
[15 April 2015]
Australia’s live cattle export industry is hopeful Indonesia will soon change its system of allocating cattle permits every three months, to a yearly quota system. Representatives from Australia’s live cattle industry were in Jakarta recently to meet with importers and government officials. Simon Crean, Chairman of the Australian Livestock Exporters’ Council, quoted by ABC Rural, said talks had been positive and there was support for the permit system to be changed. "The message we’ve been putting, is that Indonesia will run into problems unless they build certainty into the system,” Mr Crean said. “The best way to secure that, is through the mechanism of annual permits.”
NECC launches mobile app for egg prices
[14 April 2015]
The National Egg Co-ordination Committee (NECC), an association of over 25000 layer farmers in India has launched a mobile app to provide access to egg prices across India. Sanjeev Chintawar, Business Manager of NECC said the app has been developed for both android and iOS platforms. “Egg prices will be updated on all days except Sundays,” Mr Sanjeev Chintawar told Asian Agribiz. According to him, the app will provide seamless access to egg prices and is a boon to farmers. He pointed out that they have plans to develop the app into an interactive platform, which includes news and blog columns for disseminating information. NECC has been declaring daily egg prices since May 1982.
President Joko orders probe into Benjina slavery case
[14 April 2015]
  Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo has ordered the formation of a special team to handle a slavery case in Benjina, Maluku. “What we are doing about the Benjina situation will become an international benchmark, [showcasing] the seriousness of Indonesia in addressing illegal fishing and slavery,” said Susi Pudjiastuti, Fisheries and Maritime Affairs Minister. Mrs Susi said local fisheries products were at risk of being boycotted if the government failed to show commitment in cracking down on forced labour. A recent Associated Press report exposed alleged forced labour practices in which the only official fishing operation on the island, PT Pusaka Benjina Resources, was suspected of treating hundreds of workers inhumanely.
Fitch revises Japfa Indonesia’s outlook to negative
[14 April 2015]
Fitch Ratings has revised PT Japfa Comfeed Indonesia Tbk’s outlook to negative from stable. This reflects Fitch’s view that Japfa’s financial flexibility is under strain amid an uncertain market outlook. Weak demand growth and high supply led to thinner margins for Japfa in 2014. Japfa’s cost pass through ability appears to have been eroded by the increased supply over the last couple of years. While demand for chicken meat has been weak for the past two years, a reduction in supply has only kicked in over the past six months or so. Japfa has cut DOC production capacity by about 15% this year, and the company believes smaller producers are also making similar capacity cuts.
Malaysian group shows interest in investing in Pakistan
[14 April 2015]
Malaysia’s Nafas Food Processing & Marketing Sdn Bhd (NFPMSB), a state owned company has shown interest in setting up a food processing and halal meat unit in the Special Economic Zone near Islamabad in Pakistan and then exporting the products back to Malaysia. Recently, a Malaysian delegation led by Dato Haji Ali Bin Shaikh Ahmad of NFPMSB met officials in Pakistan to discuss and explore the investment opportunities in Pakistan. Dr Miftah Ismail, Minister of State and Chairman, Board of Investment assured full cooperation to the Malaysian group for the venture which would boost trade and economic relations between the two countries.

Achieving food sovereignty needs multi-sector cooperation
Report from a seminar in Jakarta by ARIEF FACHRUDIN
[14 April 2015]

The Indonesian government under the leadership of President Joko Widodo AIMS to achieve food sovereignty mainly in rice, corn, beef, poultry, shrimp and fish. According to Prof Bungaran Saragih, former Minister of Agriculture (2000-2004), to achieve this the government must have a clear view of food sovereignty, and focused strategies, policies and programs. “There should also be a clear allocation of tasks of across departments and regions. And the most important is the existence of multi-sector cooperation between the government and farmers, businessmen and NGOs,” said Prof Bungaran.

Connectivity big challenge for food sovereignty 
Connectivity is a key challenge for Indonesia as it is an archipelagic country, said Hari Priyono, Secretary General of the Ministry of Agriculture. “Therefore we need centralisation of certain commodities in certain regions.” He urged farmers to change their mind-set. “Now is the time for them to think of corn farms or livestock farms as ‘factories’ that should continuously meet market demand.” He added that: “The government will support with good policies and we will strengthen our communication with farmers and businessmen to respond to their needs and feedback.”

Technical ministries asked to be more creative
Bambang Adi Winarso, Deputy for Food Coordination and Biological Resources of the Coordinating Ministry for Economic Affairs, believes that plans and systems that have been prepared by the government to achieve food sovereignty have been good. However, he said manpower to run the plans and systems is the challenge. “Officials in technical ministries like the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Fisheries & Marine Affairs have to be more creative. They have to know that there is no ‘one policy fits for all’. They have to make special policies according to the potential of each region. In addition, they also have to think about market, not only production,” said Mr Bambang.

Livestock sector to meet increased animal protein demand
Indonesia’s population in 2015 is predicted to reach 255.5 million and by 2035 the figure is expected to reach 305.7 million. This means that in the next 20 years, the population increase per year will be around 2.51 million people. Fauzi Luthan, Director of Livestock Farming of the Ministry of Agriculture, said the livestock sector has to be able to cater to the growing demand for animal protein. He said the ministry plans to increase farmers’ economies of scale, improve the logistics system and develop a supply chain that follows animal welfare concepts. “We will also actively try to change consumers’ preference from fresh warm meat to chilled/frozen meat,” said Mr Fauzi.

Aquaculture sector to increase production
Indonesia's Ministry of Fisheries & Marine Affairs data, revealed that fish and shrimp production in 2014 reached 3.69 million tonnes and 0.59 million tonnes, respectively. Slamet Soebjakto, Director General of Aquaculture, said that to increase fish and shrimp production and to meet domestic and export demand, the ministry this year will certify farms and hatcheries to Good Aquaculture Practices. It will also increase farmers’ independence in feed, adopt biofloc technology for fish and increase the number of fish & shrimp health stations in production centres. “The programs will also be supported with the ‘Minapadi’ program – an integration of aquaculture and rice farm. FAO supports this integration program,” said Mr Slamet.

Asian Agribiz 2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference
Onsite report by CRAIGE ALLAN
[13 April 2015]

The second day of the Pig feed Quality Conference in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam on April 10, continued to present the latest science, trial data and solutions for Asian pig and feed producers.  Presentations from the Feed Additives and Feed Manufacturing themes included;
The future of copper as a growth promoter in pigs
Xabier Arbe, Regional Technical Manager, Novus International reported recent research findings indicating that chelated copper (Mintrex Cu) is a more effective growth promoter than copper sulphate in weaner pigs. In fact, less total copper is required to exhibit the same or better growth and feed efficiency responses.  He made the interesting observation that the dark green/black faeces normally attributed to high dietary inorganic copper supplementation was not present in manure from pigs fed chelated copper, and stressed that faecal colour has no bearing on the performance of the grower pigs.
Supporting the immune system of piglets with egg immunoglobulins
Piglets are born without any immune protection and need external support to their immune system right after birth, before passive protection provided by the sow’s colostrum starts working.  Egg antibodies have been shown to be efficient immune ingredients, due to the reduced incidence of diarrhoea, medical treatment costs and mortality, said Felipe Freitas Barbosa, Product manager, Globigen, EW-Nutrition.  In trials in Thailand, the return on investment for Globigen was 1:2.2, not including weaning weight improvement, he reported.
In-line moisture management determines feed quality
The feed industry needs the ability to measure moisture accurately throughout the production process but until recently has not had the tools to do this effectively in real time.  According to Jon Ratcliff, Managing Director of Food & Agriculture Consultancy, the latest technology to solve this problem is based on microwave resonator technology (commercially known as M007) which measures in real time the moisture of the raw material before batching, and auto corrects the batching weight to correct for the true dry matter.  The auto weight correction for moisture is completed without any delay to the batching process and the PLC provides an adjusted formulation for verification, traceability and stock reconciliation purposes. 

Steam conditioning for pellet efficiency
Problems of feed pelleting were reviewed by Steven Goh, Regional Business Director, Delst Asia.  He said that surfactants are commonly added to the mixer to address the issue of low moisture after steam conditioning.  Because surfactants are added prior to gelatinization adsorb to the surface of the starch granule, the surface is rendered lipophilic, which retards the migration of water into the starch granule.  There is no effective softening of the amylose, resulting in uncooked, resistant starch, affecting the digestibility of the starch, and hence the energy value of the feed is compromised.
NIR & moisture management in feed
Traditionally, discussions on controlling water in feed have focused on moisture content.  This provides valuable information about product quality.  Water activity is another important moisture measurement that defines the energy or ‘availability’ of water in a product.  While both measurements are important, water activity provides the most valuable information, noted Ivan Ward, Director of Agri-Torque.  Water activity, determines the lower limit of available water for microbial growth.  Typical limits for water activity for feed are in the range of 0.65 and 0.73 aw.

Harbin Institute introduces China’s first PEDv vaccine
[13 April 2015]
The Harbin Weike Biotechnology Company has introduced China’s first vaccine for the Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus (PEDv), part of a triple-vaccine that also protects against Transmissible Gastroenteritis (TGE) and Type G rotavirus. A PEDv outbreak severely affected the US pork industry last year, but China has also suffered frequent PEDv outbreaks. The new vaccine was developed at the Harbin Veterinary Research Institute, one of China’s top veterinary institutes, by a team led by Dr Feng Li. Veterinarians consulted by Asian Agribiz applauded the new vaccine, but cautioned that it may not be effective against all PEDv variants. The USDA licensed two PEDv vaccines for sale last year, but the licenses are conditional, meaning the vaccines are still being evaluated for final approval.
Malaysian jv to open Johnny Rockets joints in China
[13 April 2015]
Johnny Rockets, a themed hamburger chain based on 1950s style US diners, plans to open 100 restaurants in China over the next decade. A company statement revealed that the restaurants will be operated by a joint venture between two Malaysian companies, AUM Hospitality and Parkson Retail Group Ltd. AUM already runs Johnny Rockets franchises in Malaysia, and Parkson has a network of about 60 grocery stores and malls in China. Johnny Rockets has about 330 outlets in 32 US states and 27 countries, and will be joining specialty hamburger outlets like Fatburger and Carls Jr. in the China market. Johnny Rockets is owned by Sun Capital Partners, a Florida-based private equity firm. Its first China store is expected to open in 2016.
South Korea struggles with livestock diseases
[13 April 2015]
South Korea sees no relief in its fight against foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) and highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) which, despite large scale culling and a vaccination program, have not been eradicated. Some 151 FMD cases in pig and cattle farms have been confirmed. To date 139,000 head on 160 farms have been culled. A USDA report stated that FMD disease cases recently spread to new areas and the number of cases is increasing. The government is introducing compensation for those who support suspected cases and provincial governments are taking action against farmers who intentionally avoid or delay reporting suspected cases. In addition, 800,000 doses of a new type of vaccine will be distributed to farms in FMD-infected areas and the government is planning to import another 2.4 million doses.
India to increase buffalo meat exports to Russia
[13 April 2015]
Indian authorities are in talks with Russian Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance (Rosselkhoznadzor) to increase buffalo meat exports to Russia. Mr Amit Telang, First Secretary at the Embassy of India in Russia has asked Rosselkhoznadzor to hold a new round of inspections of Indian companies interested in exporting their products to Russia. A Russian delegation is due to visit India soon to review India’s food products inspection system. Currently, four Indian companies have been allowed to supply buffalo meat to Russia and two have already started exports.
MoU for poultry courses in Pakistan
[13 April 2015]
The Technical Education and Vocational Training Authority (TEVTA) in Pakistan’s Punjab state has signed a MoU with University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences and Pakistan Poultry Association to offer poultry related courses. A Government Technical Training Centre will be established offering short term courses. Mr Irfan Qaiser Sheikh, Chairperson, TEVTA said that this joint venture wold increase employment opportunities and will enable the students to compete at both local and international level. “Students who pass out as Poultry Assistants will be an asset for the poultry industry,” he said.

Asian Agribiz Pig Feed Quality Conference 2015
Onsite report by ISA Q TAN
[10 April 2015]

With a record attendance of over 200 delegates, the Asian Agribiz 2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference presented science, trial data and solutions to update industry professionals and provide relevant and useful industry information for Asian pig and feed producers.

Feeding modern and hyperprolific sows
Rapid development in pig genetics mean that traditional feeding systems are no longer appropriate for today’s hyper-prolific sows. Dr Megan Edwards, animal nutrition consultant from ACE Livestock Consulting said there is a need to fine-tune how modern sows are fed to help them reach their genetic potential. While each genetics company has its nutritional recommendations, she stressed that these recommendations may need to be adjusted and customised to take into account other constraints to genetic potential like environment, housing, climate, labour just to name a few. Among the solutions she suggested is to adopt specific pre-farrow diets and micro manage sow nutrition during late gestation. “When designing nutrition programs, we need to consider not only the role of nutrition on metabolism but also on hormone regulation and subsequent reproduction,” she said. Dr Edwards also stressed the need for more research to address knowledge shortfalls in sow nutrition in order to keep up with genetic advances.

How NSP enzymes can benefit sows
After farrowing, sows reduce feed intake due to drastic changes in metabolism. During lactation, sows mobilise their body reserves to produce milk, leading to significant weight loss. However, extreme weight loss at this time affects subsequent reproductive performance and increases the duration of weaning to oestrus interval. Thus increasing feed intake during lactation is critical. Dr Kevin Liu, Vice President of Adisseo Asia Pacific, said recent studies showed that “adding NSP-degrading enzymes improves feed intake, hence reducing mobilisation of body reserves, leading to less live weight and backfat loss.” This finding led to the EU’s recent approval of the use of NSP enzymes in sow nutrition.

Bio-emulsifiers can improve energy utilisation during lactation
Feeding the lactating sow is one of the biggest challenges for pig producers and nutritionists as in this period, the sows’ feed intake is often insufficient to cover their energy and nutrient requirements. Dr Lakshmibai Vasanthakumari Bindhu, Staff Scientist at Kemin Industries Asia, said “such energy imbalance could negatively affect sow fertility as well as piglet weight and homogeneity at weaning,” thus it is critical to maximise energy intake during lactation. One way to achieve this is to increase the energy density of the diet by adding bio-emulsifiers like lysophospholipids. She presented a study that showed how adding lysophospholipids in sow diets improved metabolic adaptation to the demands of lactation as well as minimised body weight loss. The positive effect was further reflected in higher litter weight at birth and at weaning.

Legumes and canola can be effective protein sources
Soybean meal (SBM) remains the leading source of high quality protein for pig diets. However, issues with pricing and availability as well as the increasing calls for GM-free protein sources have led to the search for viable alternatives. Dr Megan Edwards said that among the possible alternatives are legumes and canola. Although their relative value is lower compared to SBM, the availability of synthetic amino acids today at competitive prices means that they can be used effectively in diets. However, she stressed that it is important that the attributes and shortfalls of these ingredients be properly understood, and that the materials are applied correctly in the diet. “By considering a broader portfolio of raw materials we have a means of providing partial buffering against pricing and supply volatilities and competition from other sectors. It may also allow feed supply to better meet changing consumer pressures.”

Creatine can boost growth performance and meat quality
In a highly competitive pork production industry, enhancing efficiencies help producers push up productivity and margins. Dr Eloisa Carpena, Technical Sales Manager of Evonik (SEA) Pte Ltd, said studies indicate that dietary supplementation of the amino acid creatine “may contribute to the improvement of growth performance like weight gain and feed efficiency of pigs and improve meat quality parameters like drip loss, post mortem pH and visual colour.” However, a downside is that creatine monohydrate (CMH) is expensive and is not thermostable. Dr Carpena presented new trials showing that an innovative form of guanidinoacetic acid (GAA), which is the only precursor of creatine, can be a more suitable dietary source of creatine for pigs and poultry. However, she said more research is needed to understand better the application of GAA in improving the growth performance and meat quality of pigs.

Minimising leg lameness in pigs
Despite improved genetics, nutrition, disease resistance and housing management practices, leg lameness in pigs continue to occur. Dr Thau Kiong Chung, Regional Vitamin Category Manager of DSM Nutritional Products Asia Pacific, said that this could be explained in part by the occurrence of osteochondrosis. What triggers its onset is still unclear. Moreover, osteochondrosis could cause premature culling among gilts and sows and decrease growth performance of fattening pigs, resulting in hefty economic losses. Nevertheless, while leg weakness cannot be prevented, Dr Chung said one way to halt its progression is to supplement pig diets with 25-OH-D3. Doing so tends to promote normal endochondral ossification, inhibit osteochondrosis progression and possibly regenerate destroyed cartilage tissue. Likewise, supplementing diets of growing gilts with 25-OH-D3 leads to a higher proportion of females being selected as breeding replacements.

Indon farmers facing low live bird prices
[10 April 2015]
Broiler farmers in Indonesia are facing a hard time. Information of live bird prices on April 6 sent by Pinsar Indonesia to Asian Agribiz revealed live bird prices in Jabodetabek (Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang and Bekasi) is in the range of USD 1.00-1.15/kg, while production cost is around USD 1.15-1.31. In some regions such as North Sumatera, Central Java and East Java, live birds were priced at around USD 0.92/kg. Sigit Prabowo, Chairman of the National Poultry Farmers Association, told Asian Agribiz that the situation has worsened since the government increased the price of fuel. This plus currency depreciation has prompted plans by feed millers to increase the price of feed.
Bird flu in China-Myanmar border area
[10 April 2015]
Avian influenza H7N9 has surfaced in the China-Myanmar border namely in Laukkai, Chin Shwe Haw and Muse Townships, eleven.com a Myanmar news site reported. The Livestock Breeding and Veterinary Department in Myanmar has been cooperating with the World Health Organization and a recent sample of avian influenza A tested in the border area was found to contain strains H9 and H5. The strains should be present together to incite an incidence of H7N9. No human infection of the virus has been reported. A researcher active in bird flu research in the China-Myanmar border area urged chicken meat sellers to clean their shops regularly to prevent the spread of the virus.
US beef exports to Japan, South Korea up in February
[10 April 2015]
US beef exports in February accounted for 14% of total production and 11% for muscle cuts only – ratios similar to a year ago, but higher than in January. Exports to Japan rebounded significantly in February, up 11% from a year ago in volume (15,933 tonnes) and 23% in value (USD 112.6 million). For the two-month period, exports to Japan were still down 1% in volume (29,743 tonnes) from a year ago but increased 11% in value (USD 204.1 million). The trend was similar for South Korea, as February exports were up 16% in volume (10,899 tonnes) and 24% in value (USD 80.4 million). January-February exports to South Korea were still 7% lower in volume (17,972 tonnes) but increased 3% in value (USD 137.9 million).

Asian Agribiz Pig Feed Quality Conference 2015
[09 April 2015]

The two-day Asian Agribiz Pig Feed Quality Conference 2015 opens today in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Over 200 professionals will gain new knowledge from the strong technical program addressing themes that can enhance the performance and profitability of Asian pork producers. Yesterday, DSM held a Satellite Symposium on Clean Pork Production as a prelude to the Pig Feed Quality Conference. Following is some information that was conveyed:

Producing clean pork
Around the world, consumers are increasingly calling for safe and quality food, and pork is no exception. Many countries have now banned the use of antibiotic growth promoters in animal production, while at the same time urging prudent use of these substances even for therapeutic purposes. “Consumers demand and deserve clean pork that is free from harmful residues,” said Dr Rolando Valientes, Regional Category Manager-Eubiotics of DSM Nutritional Products Asia Pacific. He noted that production of clean pork requires a holistic approach that includes management, health and nutritional interventions. Toward this end, eubiotics like organic acids, essential oil compounds, probiotics and nucleotides can be used as tools to reduce the use of antibiotics and to produce clean pork.

Coping with heat stress
One of the biggest problems in pig production is heat stress, which adversely affects how the animal functions. Dr Megan Edwards, animal nutrition consultant from ACE Livestock Consulting Pty Ltd, said that to respond to heat stress, pigs reduce their feed intake to limit the metabolic heat derived from feeding, exercise, growth among others, but this leads to more problems. To cope in these circumstances, Dr Edwards said good nutrition is necessary and should focus on diets that minimise heat production and enhance thermal tolerance. Management should focus on maximising feed intake by reviewing and reassessing feed ingredients, feed processing and feeding processes and practices.

CP Vietnam invests in new processing plant
[09 April 2015]
CP Vietnam Cooperation, a unit of Thailand’s Charoen Pokphand Foods Pcl (CPF), plans to invest USD 20 million to build a new food processing plant in Vietnam. The move is in line with the company’s strategy in 2015 to advance toward food processing and ready-to-eat food businesses. Montri Suwanporsi, President of CP Vietnam revealed that the new and third plant is now under construction and is expected to be completed in 2016. “With the new plant we will be able to grow our market share to 20% in three to five years, from around 6-8% at present,” Mr Montri said.
Committee to meet on Thai egg price issue
[09 April 2015]
Thailand’s national committee on policy and measures to assist farmers will meet today to consider measures on tackling the low egg price problem, said Deputy Director General of the Department of Internal Trade Ittipong Kunakonbodin. The Egg Board earlier agreed on measures including exports of surplus eggs and early removal of spent hens. Compensation of THB0.50 for each egg exported and THB 40 for any spent hen removed earlier but not older than 70 weeks was suggested (1 USD = THB 32.60). The measures need funding and the national committee is expected to request for a budget for the program.  More recently, egg price has improved with declining production as some farmers have succumbed to losses while the hot weather has reduced productivity.
Vietnam more open to US beef imports
[09 April 2015]
Vietnam has removed all cattle age and product restrictions on US beef and beef products, provided these items are derived from cattle slaughtered on or after March 27. In 2014, the US exported a total of 2869 tonnes of beef and beef variety meat valued at USD 22.1 million to Vietnam. The US Meat Export Federation (USMEF) said the removal of cattle age and product restrictions is a positive development, especially in a market that is price-sensitive. Thad Lively, USMEF senior vice President for trade access noted that having access to Vietnam for a full range of beef products will allow the US industry to better capitalise on any market access gains resulting from the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
West Kalimantan to balance egg supply and demand
[09 April 2015]
Indonesia’s West Kalimantan is currently facing a surplus of eggs. Abdul Manaf, Head of Livestock and Animal Health Agency of the province, said normal production in the province is around 100-120 tonnes/day, while current production has reached 160 tonnes. “Local consumption cannot absorb the entire production,” he said. Some egg producers have sold their eggs to markets outside the province, especially to Java. In addition, the local government plans to reduce layer population from now around 3.5 million birds to 2.4-2.8 million birds. “In the last two years, layer population in this province has increased from 2.3 million birds in 2011 to 3.5 million in 2014,” said Mr Manaf. Another strategy would be to stop layer DOC importation from outside the province that has reached around 150,000 chicks/month.
Bombay High Court asks government to file affidavit on beef ban
[09 April 2015]
The Bombay High Court has asked the Maharashtra state government in India to file an affidavit on the necessity of the beef ban. The first hearing of a string of petitions that challenged the new law, which banned sale and possession of beef in Maharashtra was held on April 6. The division bench of Bombay High Court questioned the government on why its compassion was restricted to cow progeny. To this the Advocate General Sunil Manohar appearing for Maharashtra government said that ‘this is just beginning, and the state may consider taking it further’. After directing the government to file its affidavit in reply, the High Court posted the hearing for April 20.
Feed still main revenue earner for CP Vietnam
[08 April 2015]
CP Vietnam generated total sales of around USD 2 billion in 2014, 95% of which came from domestic sales and the rest from exports. Considering sales by segments, around 45% of total sale revenues came from feed sales and another 45% from livestock operations while its food business accounted for 6-8% and the balance was others. This year, CP Vietnam targets its food business to grow 30% through marketing channels including supermarkets and modern trade stores as well as CP Shop and CP Fresh Mart stores.
Asian markets import less US pork
[08 April 2015]
US pork exports to its main markets in Asia was down 16% in the first two months of this year, according to the US Meat Export Federation (Usmef). Total exports to Japan, Hong Kong/China, South Korea, Asean, and Taiwan reached 154,832 tonnes for the period compared to 184,676 tonnes a year ago. Export value also tumbled 14% to USD 489.7 million to USD 571.7 million during period in review. Volume and value of shipments to South Korea grew by 58% and 77% respectively as they did in Taiwan, however these were not enough to offset the drop in the other key Asian markets. Export volume and value to Japan both fell by 9% and 16%, Hong Kong/China 45% and 45%, and Asean 47% and 50%.
Indonesia slammed for slave labour in fishing
[08 April 2015]
The US has threatened to stop importing fish and seafood from Indonesia if they are proven to be slave-caught. Catherine A Novelli, US Under Secretary for Economic Growth, Energy and the Environment, said that the US condemns forced labour and related practices. Stories about slave workers surfaced following an Associated Press report. The news agency conducted a year-long investigation into the fate of foreign fishermen in Aru, Maluku – Indonesia. About 4000 foreign fishermen, mostly from Myanmar, are employed by PT Pusaka Benjina Resources (PBR), a joint venture with Thai investors in Aru. They are forced to work under poor conditions. The Indonesian government, has ordered PBR to stop its operations. Most fish caught by PBR in Aru is shipped to Thailand for processing and then exported to the US.
Yum! Brands commits to deforestation-free palm oil
[08 April 2015]
US-based Yum! Brands that owns QSR chains KFC, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut has announced that it plans to refrain from using palm oil obtained through deforestation. The company said by the end of 2017, it will “source 100% of its palm oil for cooking oil from responsible and sustainable sources.” The expansion of oil palm plantations has been blamed for driving rainforest destruction, particularly in Indonesian Borneo (Kalimantan). Indonesia’s tropical forest area is the third largest in the world, but Indonesia is also one of the world’s largest emitters of greenhouse gasses because of rapid loss of carbon-rich forests and peatlands.
Belarus suspends poultry imports from India
[08 April 2015]
Belarus has imposed temporary restrictions on imports of poultry from India, according to the Veterinary and Food Control Department of the Agriculture and Food Ministry. The move follows cases of high pathogenic avian influenza in Uttar Pradesh state in India. The ban will cover imports of live birds, hatching eggs, poultry meat, egg powder and other food products from processed eggs. With this, all the previously issued permits to import the products from Uttar Pradesh will be cancelled.

PPA to organise two day poultry festival
[08 April 2015]
Pakistan Poultry Association (PPA) in collaboration with the Punjab Livestock department will hold a two day Poultry Food Festival on April 10-11 in Lahore. Dr Mustafa Kamal, Chairman (North Zone) of PPA said that the festival is aimed at creating awareness among the general public on the importance of poultry products, which is the cheapest available meat protein source. “PPA also endeavours to promote egg consumption, which has many health benefits,” he said. According to him, poultry accounts for 40% of total meat consumption in Pakistan and generates employment for about 1.8 million people.

CP Foods to invest USD500m for expansion in India
[07 April 2015]
Charoen Pokphand Foods India Private Limited (CPF) operating its Five Star Chicken franchise, plans to invest USD 500 million for expansion in India. Sanjeev Pant, Senior Vice President of CPF said that they plan to double the number of Five Star Chicken stores in the next five years and to enter the packaged food business. CPF has 260 Five Star Chicken stores in India and is growing at the rate of 10-15%. According to him, the investment of USD 500 million will go towards expanding shrimp, poultry and food business of CPF.
Brazil lifts import ban on Vietnam seafood
[07 April 2015]
Vietnam’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development’s Department of Animal Health said Brazil has lifted the ban on Vietnamese tra fish. The department’s Director Pham Van Dong said a number of Vietnamese enterprises are preparing to ship their products to Brazil. Previously, Brazil’s Ministry of Agriculture had requested for Vietnam to draw out a plan for preventing diseases on tra fish. Vietnam’s Department of Animal Health said the requirement was contrary to regulations of the World Organisation for Animal Health, the World Trade Organisation and those in the sanitary and phytosanitary systems.
Eastern Indonesian pig farmers need training
[07 April 2015]
Results of a survey of pig farming in the east of Indonesia reveal a need for better education of farmers, particularly on pig disease and biosecurity. Pigs provide a secondary income source for smallholder farmers, with the majority slaughtering at their own premises for household meat consumption. Most of the pigs are kept in pens or tethered, while some roam free in the village. Farmers have limited access to animal health facilities and biosecurity is minimal, the researchers found. First-named author, Edwina E C Leslie, and co-authors reported that pig farming is common among smallholder farmers in East Nusa Tenggara.

Web special
Food safety focus for World Health Day
[07 April 2015]

Ensuring food safety from farm to plate
This year's world Health which falls today is dedicated to food safety. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the slogan for this as 'From farm to plate, make food safe'. “Food safety is a cross-cutting issue and shared responsibility that requires participation of non-public health sectors and support of major international and regional agencies and organisations active in the fields of food, emergency aid, and education,” said WHO in a release. Coordinated international actions are also needed to reign in foodborne disease, it added.

Foodborne diseases cause 351,000 deaths
Nearly 600 million cases of foodborne enteric disease, with 351,000 deaths, occurred worldwide in 2010, 40% of them in young children, a WHO research group noted as it released early findings of a broad analysis of the global burden of the diseases. The WHO’s Foodborne Disease Burden Epidemiology Reference Group’s (FERG’s) figures say that enteric disease cases from contaminated food numbered 582 million in 2010. Twenty-two different diseases were responsible, with Salmonella typhi infections causing the most deaths (52,000), followed by enteropathogenic E. coli (37,000) and norovirus (35,000). Southeast Asia was the site of the second highest disease burden after Africa.

Few countries implement integrated antimicrobial resistance surveillance
The Southeast Asia regional food safety strategy among others objectives, is building links across the region. From the Food Standard and Safety Authority of India’s mechanisms to certify safe food across all sectors to the ‘Clean food, good taste’ certification for street food vendors in Thailand, WHO is working with governments, policy makers, public health professionals, and individuals to build a synergy of safe food. This includes promoting and supporting implementation of laws and standards, improving public awareness and spurring action across various sectors. Despite this, harmonised integrated surveillance of antimicrobial resistance in food-producing animals and food is implemented in only a few countries. While national programs are working to create more reactive programs, a holistic solution must also come from each segment of the food chain, starting with the farmers.

Food safety starts from the farm
Safe food production practices at the farm can ensure that meat, dairy and egg products are well-tended from the source. WHO in its website presented a story about an organic poultry farmer from India, Vivek Kushwaha. His lifelong desire for healthy food ignited a passion to develop a successful organic poultry farm and bring local farmers together to form a network of producers of safe food. His ‘cycle of happiness’ philosophy has drastically improved the lives of the farmers Vivek works with. “They had almost quit farming but are now enthused as they produce the best quality products for the consumers. They also understand that providing healthy food is sustainable and the right thing to do.” WHO’s Antimicrobial Resistance Global Report on Surveillance has defined that resistance to antibacterial drugs has become a worldwide problem for both human and animal health. Irrational use of antibiotics causes antimicrobial resistance in both animals and humans.

SEA urged to make food safety a priority
Over 700,000 children die in Southeast Asia every year due to diarrhoea and several other diseases caused by the impure food and water. “Bacteria, viruses, parasites, chemicals, and other contaminants in our food can cause over 200 diseases ranging from diarrhoea to cancer,” said Poonam Khetrapal Singh, WHO Regional Director for Southeast Asia. She said countries must put in place comprehensive food safety policies and stringently implement it across the food chain. “WHO supports countries to prevent, detect and respond to foodborne disease outbreaks using the Codex Alimentarius, a collection of international food standards, guidelines and codes of practice that include microbiological norms, food additives, pesticides and veterinary drug residues, contaminants, labelling and presentation, and methods of sampling and risk analysis.”

Indonesia lacks adequate food safety standards
Indonesia still has a long way to go before it can ensure food safety as the country severely lacks adequate standards, according to Agustin Kusumayati, University of Indonesia Public Health Dean. “This may be because of a lack of priority [on the government side] to develop them. That’s why it’s hard for us to apply reward and punishment [with food producers]. However, having food safety standards is not enough to ensure consumer safety as food safety involves many stakeholders,” she said. The government is currently working on issuing more Indonesian National Standards (SNI) for food and agriculture products, according to Ita Munardini, Agriculture Production and Marketing Director General of the Ministry of Agriculture. “At the moment, we have about 500 SNIs, but only a few are mandatory. Without food safety standards our producers will not be able to compete [with foreign producers],” she said. Ms Ita said the reason Indonesia still lacked food safety standards was because they are expensive to develop.

Thailand opts for sustainable corn project
[06 April 2015]
Bangkok Produce Merchandising Pcl, a company under Charoen Pokphand Foods Pcl, or CPF, has signed an MOU with the Agricultural Land Reform Office under the Ministry of Agricultural and Cooperatives to jointly implement a sustainable corn project. This involves transferring good agricultural practice for maize to farmers. The cooperation was prompted by the current smoke problem in the northern region, a major corn production area. Somchai Kungsamutr, President and CEO of Bangkok Produce said the project will promote proper corn planting knowledge and after-harvest management. Ploughing up and over of soil is promoted rather than burning to clear post-harvest waste. The project aims to cover 18,000 acres in eight provinces in the first year with a target for 90,000 acres by 2019.
Indon poultry firms see profit decline in 2014
[06 April 2015]
Publicly listed poultry firms in Indonesia ended last year with lacklustre financial performances, surging expenses and low prices squeezing revenues. Major players Charoen Pokphand Indonesia, Japfa Comfeed Indonesia and Malindo Feedmill all recorded significant a year-on-year decline in their net profits last year. CP Indonesia saw its net profit plunge by 30.8% to around USD 134.6 million last year from around USD 194.5 million in 2013. Japfa recorded a 48.3% decline to around USD 24.5 million from around USD 47.4 million year-on-year. Malindo, meanwhile, booked around USD 6.5 million in net losses last year, a slump from around USD 18.5 million in net profits in 2013.“Declining prices on the back of DOC oversupply, currency depreciation and fuel-price hikes became the main factors deflating the firms’ financial performance,” said Herman Koeswanto, Mandiri Sekuritas Analyst.
Betagro opens four food outlets in retail complex  
[06 April 2015]
Betagro Group from Thailand has opened four outlets for its food and bakery brands at a new luxury retail complex, EM Quartier, in Bangkok. The restaurants namely the Japanese food chain Pomme-no-ki, the Japanese udon chain Miyatake Sanuki Udon, Little Mermaid bakery and the Singaporean barbequed pork chain, Bee Cheng Hiang. Betagro has invested significantly in the restaurant segment through joint ventures with several Japanese food chains and is expecting to add two to three more brands to its portfolio this year.
US eyeing more Asian pork exports
[06 April 2015]
As the first quarter of 2015 ends, Joel Haggard, US Meat Export Federation (USMEF) Senior Vice President for the Asia Pacific, offered his insights on factors shaping demand for US pork in key Asian markets. “First, the US dollar is particularly strong and a strong dollar means weak currencies for the importing countries in Asia and also our competitors, including Europe and Brazil. On top of this, we see weak European pork prices in Euro terms,” said Mr Haggard, as quoted by Meat+Poultry. Meanwhile, domestic pork prices in Japan and Korea, two of the US’ major importing destinations, are up 15-20%. “We hope this will translate into overall increased imports,” he said. “We also continue to watch China closely. Imports are up 6% year-on-year despite soft domestic prices.”
US corn, soybean, wheat stocks up from year ago
[06 April 2015]
The US Department of Agriculture (USDA), in its Grain Stocks report dated March 31, reported that corn stocks stood at 7.7 billion bushels, up 11% from a year ago, the second most in the history for the time of year and above estimates. Both soybean stocks and wheat stocks were up 34% and 6% respectively. In its Prospective Plantings report, also released on March 31, the USDA said it will reduce corn and wheat planted acreage by 2% and 3% from the year before, and increase soybean acreage by 1% from 2014.Soybean planted area for 2015, meanwhile, is estimated at a record high of 84.6 million acres. Compared with last year, planted acreage intentions are up or unchanged in 21 of the 31 major producing states. FT.com said world inventories of grain and oilseeds are “bulging after two years of good harvests”.
CJ to promote products with less sodium, chemical additives
[06 April 2015]
Korea-based CJ Group plans to widen its processed meat market by promoting new products with less sodium and no chemical additives. The company said the demand for low-salt, chemical-free premium products was rising. “More consumers are exploring ways to lead a healthier life,” said Kwak Jung-woo, a marketing executive of CJ Cheiljedang. “This puts increasing pressure on food companies to reduce the use of sodium and chemical substances. We have led the market with a series of innovative products. We will shake up the market once again with new products that will present customers with healthier life choices.” He said that CJ products contained between 1.0% and 1.5% sodium, less than products made in the US, Europe and Japan.
Japfa Indonesia acquires 70% of MMP shares
[03 April 2015]
Japfa Ltd has announced that its Indonesia listed subsidiary Japfa Comfeed Indonesia has acquired 70% of the issued share capital of PT Multi Makanan Permai (MMP) on April 1. The acquisition price was around USD 37,066, which was arrived at on a willing-buyer, willing-seller basis, based on 70% of MMP’s net tangible assets as at February 28, 2015. The purchase was financed by internal resources. MMP is into trading of animal feed raw materials. The customers of MMP are mainly self-mixer poultry farmers and smaller local feedmills. The acquisition provides Japfa Indonesia with the opportunity to expand its customer portfolio.
Vietnam approves GM corn for animal feed
[03 April 2015]
Vietnamese farmers across the country can now plant three varieties of genetically-modified (GM) corn from Syngenta according to a government rule, reported Thanh Nien News. The three varieties are NK66 BT, NK66 GT and NK66 BT/GT, and will be supplied to corn farms nationwide with each variety being distributed to specific regions, said the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. Pham Dong Quang, Director of the Department of Crop Production, said the three varieties are able to resist pest and herbicide as well as produce higher yields. “GM corn will be used for animal feed only and thus, it does not require special labelling,” he said. These developments were in line with a 2006 plan to develop biotech crops as part of a ‘major program for the development and application of biotechnology in agriculture and rural development’. The plan aimed to cultivate Vietnam’s first GM crops by 2015 and have 30-50% of the country’s farmland covered with genetically modified crops by 2020.
Former Yurun CEO under house arrest
[03 April 2015]
The founder and former CEO of Yurun Food Group, Zhu Yicai, has been placed under house arrest by Chinese authorities, according to a statement posted by China’s second-largest meat company on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange website. Mr Zhu stepped down in 2012 to become Honorary Chairman and Senior Adviser to Yurun's board of directors. A story on the E-Pig (zhue.com) website said Mr Zhu was being investigated by the Communist Party’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, which is spearheading a nationwide anti-corruption campaign that has snagged scores of government and business officials. In its statement Yurun said it had no information on the reasons for Mr Zhu’s detention, but said he had no current role in managing the company, although he still owns 25% of Yurun’s shares.
SEAI urges government to lift ban on shark fin export
[03 April 2015]
The Seafood Exporters’ Association of India (SEAI) has urged the Central Government to lift the ban on sharks fin exports. The Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry recently banned sharks fin exports. In a statement, the SEAI said that the ban is counterproductive and affects the livelihood of the economically backward fishing communities. “The order reflects apprehensions of environmentalists that the shark population is fast depleting because they are being caught just for their fins,” the statement added. According to SEAI, shark is not a focused fishery in India and is only caught along with other fish.

Preview of Asian Poultry Magazine, April 2015
[03 April 2015]

Cargill supports farmers to build market share
Cargill Feed and Nutrition Vietnam helps small-scale farmers tackle big challenges not with a general one-size-fits-all answer but with localised solutions which are developed closer to home, RACHAEL PHILIP discovers.

Liuhe taps into growing demand for goose, duck
Duck and goose meat have been on a roll in China for the last 15 years. China’s consumption of broiler chicken has been hit hard by recurrent outbreaks of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza, but goose and duck meat have become steadily more popular writes RICH HERZFELDER.

IFMC confident of retail success
The Bounty Fresh Group, one of the leading poultry integrators in the Philippines, has made a name for itself with high quality poultry products. ISA Q TAN reports that its sister company, Inoza Feed Milling Corp, backed by years of producing Bounty’s internal feed requirements, is now gunning to make its mark as a leading feed company in the country.

Rohini Minerals to maintain lead with R&D
With a strong R&D division, Rohini Minerals based in South India aims to improve the quality of its poultry feeds and maintain its competitive edge. ARIEF FACHRUDIN also learns that the company embraces modern technology for its feed milling and quality control facilities.

Utilising cotton seed meal in layer diets
In the first of this two-part article S.V. RAMA RAO and T. SRILATHA* showed that the nutritive value of cotton seed meal (CSM) can be improved by selective dehulling and fortification with neutraceuticals and included in broiler diets at up to 20%.  In the second part of this article they write that dehulled CSM can also be successfully used in layer diets.

New generation stabilisers improve Newcastle disease vaccine performance
Asian poultry integrators increasingly rely on hatcheries to administer important vaccines.   Pressures to adopt earlier vaccination strategies include injected, sprayed and in ovo programs, each method and antigen imposing its own particular burden application and risk of failure.  ZHANG JIANG, VERGIL DAVIS and RYAN IZARD* discuss the potential of new generation stabilizer technologies to protect fragile Newcastle Disease (ND) vaccines from the harmful effects of chlorine.  This can allow producers to use ordinary tap water or well water to make spray vaccination more convenient and efficient.

DDGS – Understanding quality & value
Many feed mills and integrators have become frustrated with the variable nature of DDGS. The use of book values has often resulted in reduced animal performance, increased diet costs or both. As a result some companies are simply not prepared to take on the risks using DDGS, while others have continued using, but have taken conservative positions on its nutritional value and inclusion rate. In both instances companies are losing out simply due to the fact that they don’t fully understand the material, through no direct fault of their own. MAX PURSER* outlines some of the considerations to understand specific sources of DDGS to be able to successfully use higher levels of this economical source of nutrients and energy.

NIR workshop in HCMC - few places left
[02 April 2015]
A one-day workshop on Near Infrared Reflectance Spectroscopy (NIR) will be held in Ho Chi Minh City on Wednesday 8 April the day prior to the 2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference. This is to help pig feed producers utilise data to make decisions that can save money, and improve feed quality and animal performance. Presented by NIR expert, Ivan Ward (Agri-Torque Pty Ltd) it will be held in a modern computer lab and cover the challenges and opportunities of NIR. The workshop is limited to 20 participants. The cost of USD360 includes refreshments, lunch and workshop notes. Register your interest with Omthong Tjoa and Sutasinee Lake at events@asian-agribiz.com. Further information on Asian Agribiz's 2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference is available here.
CPF targets 25% growth in pork production   
[02 April 2015]
Charoen Pokphand Foods Plc, or CPF, targets to increase its pork production by 25% this year from last year’s 70,000 tonnes worth around USD 153.80 million, said Prapoj Chokpichitchai, CPF’s Executive Vice President for its pork processing business. CPF’s processing plant in Chachoengsao province has a capacity to produce 1400 tonnes of pork a week. CPF also has a further processing plant that can churn out around 5400 tonnes a year of further processed pork products. The company plans to build two new further processing plants; one is being constructed and is scheduled to be operational in the middle of next year. Once all three plants are operating, CPF will intensify production capacity of its further pork processing to total 19,000 tonnes a year.
Two human cases of H5N1 in Indonesia
[02 April 2015]
An Indonesian Health Ministry official, reported two H5N1 human fatalities. The Jakarta Globe reported that the father and son from Tangerang in Banten province were hospitalised in separate facilities with severe flulike symptoms. The father (40) died on March 24, and his son (2) died two days later. Indonesia’s state media Antara said the two, along with other family members, had visited a relative in Bogor who owns a small poultry farm and sudden poultry deaths had occurred during their stay.
Jinluo plant to reopen after FMD reports
[02 April 2015]
Xincheng Jinluo Group’s plant in Dezhou, China has been authorised to resume production less than two weeks after it was closed following accusations that it was processing pigs dead from foot-and-mouth disease. Safety control systems have been improved, and the Linyi County Animal Husbandry Veterinary Bureau inspected the plant and said it could resume production, Jinluo said in a statement posted on its website. FMD has been reported in at least seven Chinese provinces over the last few months, and the CCTV broadcast followed reports of a police investigation which found farm insurance agents were helping farmers sell pigs that had died of FMD. The swift re-authorisation for the Jinluo plant contrasts however with the treatment US-owned Shanghai Husi received last year, when it was permanently closed after a TV broadcast accused it of processing expired meat.
Fast Food Indonesia sees profits dip
[02 April 2015]
Ballooning expenses from rising operational costs and a minimum-wage hike has Fast Food Indonesia, Kentucky Fried Chicken’s (KFC) operator in Indonesia, feeling the pinch. The publicly listed company ended last year with a 6.31% increase in revenue to USD 322.3 million. The moderate growth failed to compensate for the firm’s surging expenses, however, bringing down net profit by 2.7% to USD 11.63 million in 2014. Mario B Ledres, Finance and Administration General Manager, said increasing operational costs and the rise in minimum wage would affect the company’s bottom line. “The minimum wage increased 14.5% a few years back to more than 32% in 2013 and 18% in 2014,” he said. He added the government’s decision to raise the price of subsidised fuel late last year had increased transportation costs, which made up between 50- 53% of its total operational costs.
Rainfall in India sounds alarm for crop damage
[02 April 2015]
With the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) forecasting more rain in North West and North East India, the possibility of crop damage seems to be high. IMD has forecast more rain in many states including Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh. “This could cause some damage to standing crops like wheat and maize in these areas,” Amit Sachdev, India Representative of US Grains Council said and added that water logging could also affect standing crops. In most areas in India, crops are harvested and put out on the land for drying. According to him, extensive damage to wheat and mustard crop has already been reported from Rajasthan due to heavy rain.
CAB Cakaran’s new business entity to generate 10% turnover
[01 April 2015]
Malaysian integrator CAB Cakaran Corp Bhd expects its new biomass power generation business to generate 10% of its turnover in two years. Chris Chuah, Group Managing Director, said the biomass power generation facility will utilise roughly 300 tonnes of chicken droppings collected from its farms daily. “This can produce more than one megawatt of power. We have yet to determine the cost of investment. The project should commence at end of the year,” he said after the company’s annual general meeting. CAB Cakaran recently inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with New Chemical Trading Co Ltd from Japan and Seri Kedah Corp Sdn Bhd to venture into the biomass project. The facility will incinerate chicken droppings for the project and also produce fertiliser as a by-product.
De Heus Vietnam opens 5th feed factory
[01 April 2015]
De Heus Vietnam opened its 5th animal feed facility in Vietnam recently. The plant, located at Binh Xuyen Industrial Park in Vinh Phuc province, has a production capacity of 400,000 tonnes per year, lifting the company’s total production capacity to 850,000 tonnes per year. De Heus said the new plant will meet international quality standards as it integrates the advanced infrastructure imported from Europe and the US. It also has a well-equipped laboratory that monitors the quality of all raw material and finished products. “This facility will sustain our leadership in the animal feed sector and contribute to the development of the agriculture sector in Vietnam,” said Gabor Fluit, General Director. The plant is set up as a four-in-one production facility with a dedicated piglet feed line, a separate aqua feed line, its own bulk loading station and one line for other animals.
Japfa Ltd shares fall by more than 30% since IPO
[01 April 2015]
Listed last August on the Singapore Exchange, Indonesian agrifood company Japfa Ltd has seen its shares fall by 34% from its listing price of SGD 0.80 (USD 0.58) . According to its financials for the year ended 31 December 2014, the company had seen its profit after tax and minority interests fall by 25.3% to USD 31.2 million despite experiencing a 9.3% increase in revenue to USD 2.9 5 billion. The integrator recorded a lower profit margin as a result of oversupply in its market, a fall in raw milk prices in China and a review of Japfa’s swine breeding practices in Vietnam. To drive long-term growth, Japfa said it will expand its dairy operations in China. The company is also temporarily scaling back its poultry business in Indonesia to improve operational efficiency. In addition, Japfa is also diversifying its business to reduce reliance on PT Japfa Comfeed by investing heavily in “high-growth consumer food brands in the region”.
New Zealand farmers’ group welcome Korea FTA
[01 April 2015]
Farmer owned industry organisation Beef + Lamb New Zealand has welcomed the signing of the New Zealand-Korea Free trade Agreement, calling the deal ‘critical’ for sheep and beef farmers and exporters. James Parson, Chief Executive of the organisation, said the deal would help keep both farmers and exporters competitive in this key market for them. Korea is New Zealand’s fourth-largest beef market by volume, reported GlobalMeatNews.com. Volume, however, has dropped in recent years due in part to competition from the US and, more recently Australia and Canada, having a tariff advantage through their free trade agreements with Korea.

Gira Asia Meat Club review 2015
Jakarta, Indonesia
[31 March 2015]

Production, consumption to see modest growth
Economic growth should be better in 2015 spurring growth in the global meat market, said Richard Brown, Gira Director. However the market will be subject to more risk than previous years, with renewed problems in the Eurozone and the impact of the oil price decline. Meat production and consumption will see modest growth, supported by low feed costs, compared to the historical average. On the other hand, Mr Brown said the market will continue to be on high alert with diseases such as the African swine fever spreading into other countries with serious threat to trade and PEDv in the US being unpredictable.

Pigmeat production positive in most Asian markets
Asia saw a decline in pig herd numbers in 2014, most notably in Thailand, Japan and China. Rupert Claxton said Japan remains the largest importer of pigmeat in the region and Chinese imports continued to grow, despite low domestic prices. Mr Claxton said pigmeat production in the region in 2015 should be positive in most markets. Japanese import volumes may decline since pigmeat production in the country is forecast to recover (by 1.2%), stimulated by high market prices.

Poultry records strong production growth in 2014
Asian poultry meat in 2014 recorded strong production growth throughout most of region due to price, said Rupert Claxton. This year it is estimated that the production growth will continue, with incredible growth in India driven by a booming integrated chicken industry and the implementation of improved disease controls. In addition, Thai exports are set to continue to grow with new export opportunities opening in the Philippines and several other countries that recently lifted bans on imports of fresh chicken from Thailand. Chinese exports will also grow but slowly due to its poor safety recognition.

Asian sheepmeat production, consumption up
Sheepmeat production in Asia in 2014 increased in line with flock growth, but little investment in the industry limited productivity gains, according to Rupert Claxton, Gira Senior Consultant. Consumption grew as consumers looked to alternatives for beef, poultry and pigmeat. Exports remain limited due to small-scale & backyard production, while imports rose particularly in China, as demand outpaced local supply. “In 2015 sheepmeat production and consumption in Asia will continue to increase and sheep flocks are expected to grow, particularly in the Asian minor markets,” said Mr Claxton, adding that “China will remain the dominant producer, importer and consumer of sheepmeat in Asia and globally.”

Asian beef consumption to remain positive
Beef consumption in Asia this year will remain positive, said Rupert Claxton. Chinese beef consumption in particular will continue to grow, although at a lower rate of 1%. And to meet this consumption increase, Chinese beef imports will also continue to increase. In terms of production, India, China and Pakistan will continue driving production volume growth in the region, notably India with an increase of 5.2% this year. Besides, Indian beef exports will continue to grow at an estimated 7%.

Indonesia’s CP Prima launches new fish feed
[31 March 2015]
Responding to Indonesia’s Minister of Fisheries and Marine Affairs’ call to provide cheaper fish feed, Central Proteinaprima, better known as CP Prima, recently launched a fish feed at an economical price of around USD 0.53/kg. George Basuki, Communication Manager, said the protein content of the new feed is around 27-28%, lower than the 32-34% protein content of its premium feed. “However, the protein content of the new feed is higher than Indonesia’s National Standard (SNI),” said Mr George. The company is promoting the new feed, and Mr George believes that the new feed will sustain fish farmers’ business in the midst of production cost increase.
Jollibee to open first Canada store this year
[31 March 2015]
Philippine fast food giant Jollibee Food Corp (JFC) targets to open the first branch of its flagship store in Canada. JFC Chief Financial Officer Ysmael Baysa said that they are considering Toronto as the possible site but nothing has been finalised yet. The company is also looking at opening more locations in the Middle East and is hoping to open its first stores in Japan and Europe in the next 2-3 years. The company has been expanding both locally and overseas, having earmarked a budget of about USD 208 million for its capital expenditure this year.
Indonesia assists neighbours in cattle breeding development
[31 March 2015]
Indonesia is assisting Cambodia, Laos and Timor Leste in sustainable cattle breeding aimed at tapping cooperation potential as well as narrowing the development gap among Asean member countries prior to the implementation of the Asean Economic Community (AEC). The training in artificial insemination, recently held in Jakarta and Malang, East Java, was also part of the Indonesian government’s efforts to develop South-South and Triangular cooperation within the AEC, the Foreign Ministry said in a press statement. The training included sustainable cattle husbandry, breeding strategy and artificial insemination followed by interactive discussions and field practice on artificial insemination and supply chain management.
Japanese developments likely to remove key barrier to TTP
[30 March 2015]
Japan is looking at ways to prevent defensive agricultural policy being a barrier to the conclusion of the TTP negotiations this year. Structural reforms is one of three major components Japanese Premier Shinzo Abe has introduced to stimulate the economy. Structural reforms can dismantle some of the complex regulations in the agricultural sector, said Yi Chen, Gira analyst, at the recent 2015 Gira Asia Meat Club briefing in Jakarta. “Any changes to Japanese meat import regulations will be significant both to the domestic meat supply chain and also to exporters to Japan from around the world, even if TTP implementation is spread over a decade,” said Ms Chen. She added that regulations have limited import volumes to approximately 50% import penetration of a large – but stagnant – 6.5 million tonne cwe market.  With a TTP agreement, import volumes will increase. “A successful TTP agreement might restore growth to a static Japanese meat market, while spurring growth in the other Asian markets,” she added.
DA mulls new SRPs for pork and chicken
[30 March 2015]
The Philippine Department of Agriculture (DA) has called for a reduction in the retail prices of pork and chicken as farm prices of live hogs and chicken have gone down to USD 2.39-2.52/kg and USD 1.16/kg respectively. The DA said retail prices should now be about USD 3.57-3.91/kg for pork and USD 2.39-2.52/kg for chicken, and is considering revising its suggested retail prices (SRP). However, retailers balked at the idea, saying traders have not brought down prices. Meanwhile, Atty Elias Jose Inciong, President of the United Broiler Raisers Association told Asian Agribiz that oversupply has led to lower prices, and current farm price is below the breakeven range of USD 1.50-1.61/kg. He said the DA should consider revising the SRP weekly so it can better reflect changes in the farm prices. Meanwhile, Edwin Chen, President of the Pork Producers Federation of the Philippines welcomed the DA’s move, telling Asian Agribiz that this will make pork and chicken meat more competitive with other protein sources.
Chinese pork price still falling
[30 March 2015]
After a brief pause at Chinese New Year, China’s pork price resumed its steady decline, falling 5% since the holiday ended in late February, according to the Ministry of Commerce’s weekly price survey. The pork price peaked in 2014 at USD 3.50/kg in mid-September, and has since slid more than 13% to USD 3. The Chinese pork market has been oversupplied since late 2013, despite a reduced herd as farmers culled millions of sows. Analysts said the government’s anti-corruption and austerity policies are one reason for the reduced demand, which is thought to have reduced banquet and restaurant consumption by one-third.
India publishes draft veterinary certificate for pork imports
[30 March 2015]
India’s Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries (DADF) recently published a draft veterinary certificate for import of pork and pork products into India. The draft has been published on the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) website for comment and the deadline is May 15. The draft combines two separate veterinary certificates for pork and processed pork products and includes several modifications to the import requirements. The requirement that a country be free from certain diseases has been modified, and now includes the World Organisation for Animal Health’s (OIE) guidelines. Moreover, the draft no longer prohibits the use of feeds produced from internal organs, blood meal, and tissues of ruminant origin.
Indonesia set to announce higher cattle import permits
[30 March 2015]
The Indonesian government is set to announce 250,000 heads of live cattle import permits from Australia for the second quarter of 2015, according to industry speculation. In Q1 the government only approved import permits of 100,000 heads. An industry source said the Q2 import permits were set to be announced soon and aligned with local industry expectations, but fell slightly short of what Indonesians importers had bid for. Jed Matz, Cattle Council of Australia CEO, said he was unable to confirm or deny whether that number was accurate. But he said an official announcement was expected soon, and if 250,000 heads were the Q2 figure, it would be welcomed by industry. An Indonesian cattle importer, meanwhile, said permits totalling 250,000 heads had been allocated by the Ministry of Trade to more than 40 feedlotters/importers.
AVA supports fish farmers hit by plankton bloom
[30 March 2015]
The Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) said it will provide assistance to fish farmers affected by the recent fish deaths caused by a plankton bloom situation. “Plankton bloom occurrences are difficult to prevent, but it is possible to reduce the impact. While we provide assistance to help farmers tide over this difficult period, it is also important for farmers to do their part to take mitigating measures early. AVA is also looking into how to build up farmers’ resilience against such incident,” Dr Mohamad Maliki Bin Osman, Minister of State for National Development and Defence, said. AVA has also called for proposals for the design and development of closed-containment aquaculture system for coastal fish farming last year.

9th Asian Grain Transportation Conference in Singapore
[27 March 2015]

Soybean consumption to increase 6.3% to 290m tonnes
Global soybean production is expected to hit 315 million tonnes for production year 2014/15, an 11% increase from last year’s 284 million tonnes, according to the US Department of Agriculture. Global consumption, meanwhile, is expected to increase to 289 million tonnes, up 6.3% from 272 million tonnes the year before. John Baize, President of John C Baize & Association, US, in a presentation on Global Grains and Oilseeds Overview said if this trend continues, “the world needs 80 million tonnes of additional soybeans in a decade”. China is expected to import 74 million tonnes of soybean in the 2014/15 marketing year. Its closest competitor is the European Union with 12.75 million tonnes. Japan and Taiwan are expected to import 2.90 million tonnes and 2.35 million tonnes respectively, while Indonesia and Thailand is forecast to import 2.35 million tonnes and 2.00 million tonnes respectively.

Global corn consumption up 3% to 970m tonnes
In the year 2014/15 global corn production remains at 990 million tonnes, the same as the year before while global consumption of corn increases 2.85% to 972 million tonnes from 945 million tonnes the year before. The US, said John Baize, President of John C Baize & Associates, US, in a presentation on Global Grains and Oilseeds Overview, which is expected to produce 302.1 million tonnes in marketing year 2014/15, up from 293.0 million tonnes the year before, is forecast to export 45.7 million tonnes compared to last year’s 48.7 million tonnes. He said, China, according to USDA estimates will produce 215.5 million tonnes of corn in 2014/15, down 1.37% from last year’s 218.5 million tonnes.

VPF Group to develop new range of pork in 2016
The VPF Group in Thailand has started work to develop a premium range of pork called Natural Product. The product is expected to be available in the market next year. Piyaporn Ratanavanichrojn, Chief Administration Officer, told Asian Agribiz that the pigs will be fed a healthy diet free from chemicals. “We have our own feedmill so we can develop a healthy diet for the pigs. We have started building the farm houses,” she said. At the conference she outlined her company’s efforts at promoting their Green Pork where the pigs are fed quality feed. This range sells for roughly 5% more than regular pork in the market. Ms Piyaporn said customers are happy to pay for premium meat because they can taste the difference and are assured of its quality.

SEA must still battle infrastructure issues after AEC
Trade barriers may begin to ease in Southeast Asia as the region moves towards the Asean Economic Cooperation (AEC) in December 2015 but issues such as infrastructure and logistics remain key challenges, said Pawan Kumar, Associate Director, Food and Agribusiness Research and Advisory, Rabobank, Singapore. “The AEC’s biggest boost is infrastructure development,” he said. Looking at the region as a whole Mr Kumar pointed out that Vietnam, centrally located in the region, has the potential to be developed into a feed distribution hub. He also said China has access crushing capacity which can be utilised to export meal to Southeast Asia.

Indonesia’s new food strategy will empower food producers
To drive growth, production and investment in Indonesia’s food sector the new government has initiated the Food Sovereignty strategy, a mid-term development plan for 2015-2019. According to Dr Bustanul Arifin, Professor of Agriculture Economics at UNILA, the strategy will encourage public-private partnership and allow stakeholders to manage national food issues. Among others, the plan will see maize production grow from 20 million tonnes per year in 2015 to 24.03 million tonnes per year in 2019. Soybean is expected to grow from 1.13 million tonnes per year in 2015 to 2.57 million tonnes per year in 2019. He said Indonesia is dependent on Java for food production and over the next five years “the government will not take the risk by shifting the base of strategic food production to outside Java'.

Prantalay appeals for its halal status
[27 March 2015]
Prantalay Marketing Public Co Ltd will appeal to the Central Islamic Council of Thailand to reinstate its halal status after the council withdrew the halal certification on 37 items produced by Prantalay and 69 items by Union Frozen, its parent company. The halal certification was revoked after porcine DNA was found in these products. Anurat Khokasai, Prantala’s Chief Marketing Officer, said pig DNA contamination was assumed to come from the container or foreign sources. He emphasised that the company’s products do not contain any pork. One of the products that was found to be contaminated with pig DNA is boiled rice with salmon, he added.
Japan pork group agrees to halving tariffs for TPP agreement
[27 March 2015]
A producer group in Japan said that it can accept a 50% reduction in import tariffs to help pave the way for the nation to reach an agreement on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The Japan Pork Producers Association said it could accept a cut in duties to as low as USD 2/kg from a maximum USD 4 at present, said Hisao Kuramoto, Managing Director of the Tokyo-based organisation. Japan imported 45% of its pork last fiscal year through March 2014, purchasing 744,000 tonnes from countries including TPP members of the US, Canada, Mexico and Chile, according to data from the agriculture ministry. “A tariff reduction exceeding the level would deal a fatal blow to Japanese pork producers, undermining the stability of supply to local consumers,” Mr Kuramoto said.
NZ meat industry backs WTO complaint
[27 March 2015]
New Zealand's meat industry is backing its government move to take a complaint to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) over Indonesia's restrictions on beef imports. In January this year, beef exports to Indonesia fell by 95% because of new restrictions. The New Zealand government, along with the US, filed a request to the WTO this week for a formal dispute hearing. Tim Ritchie, Chief Executive of New Zealand Meat Industry Association, said the restrictions have had a severe impact on the trade. “We had steady growth in the first 10 years and then the restrictions came on as they sought to be self-sufficient, and then they found there were quite severe domestic consequences and had to relax the imports again to meet demand,” he said.
Lower US prices will boost Smithfield synergies with China
[27 March 2015]
Lower US pork prices in 2015 will allow Smithfield Farms to export more pork to China and increase synergies with Smithfield’s Chinese owner, according to Smithfield CEO Larry Pope. Export potential was one rationale for WH Group’s acquisition of Smithfield in 2013, when US pork prices were much lower than Chinese prices. However, in 2014 unexpectedly high US pork prices due to PEDv and unexpectedly low Chinese pork prices due to slack demand limited those plans. “Lower pork prices should also allow us to leverage additional synergistic opportunities with WH Group and Shuanghui, our sister company in China," Mr Pope said. Despite the export woes Smithfield reported record net income of USD 556 million in 2014, up 361% from the year before, according to an earnings statement released by Smithfield on March 26.
2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference - registration closes today
[26 March 2015]
Registrations for the 2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference will close today. As in the past, this year too the conference will present a strong technical program addressing themes that can enhance the performance and profitability of Asian pork producers. It will be held on 9-10 April at the New World Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. More details and registration form can be found here.
STP relocates Cirebon plant to Purwakarta
[26 March 2015]
Suri Tani Pemuka (STP), a subsidiary of Japfa Comfeed Indonesia involved in aqua feed production, plans to relocate its Cirebon aqua feed plant to Purwakarta in West Java this year. The company wants to be closer to the market in the region, said Aminto Nugroho, Head of Sales. “With the relocation, our feed distribution costs to farmers in and around Purwakarta may decrease by USD 0.005/kg. This, of course, will benefit the farmers. They will get fresh, quality feed at a cheaper price,” said Mr Aminto. To answer Minister of Fisheries and Marine Affairs’ challenge in providing cheaper fish feed, STP will soon launch a new fish feed that will be economical.
Thai layer farmers call for dismissal of DLD head 
[26 March 2015]
A group of layer farmers in central Thailand submitted a petition to Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha urging the government to remove the Director-General of the Department of Livestock Development (DLD) Ayuth Harintharanon from his position as he has been unable to resolve the current low egg price problem. Chaiyaporn Seethan, head of the farmers, said if Dr Ayuth continues in his role for another one month, layers farmers would have to close their farms due to losses. Egg price in Thailand has been declining over the last eight months due to oversupply. Farm gate price of egg is now THB2.0 per egg while production cost is THB2.90 (1 USD = THB32).
Middle Eastern countries lift ban on Pakistan poultry imports
[26 March 2015]
Countries in the Middle East have lifted their ban on poultry imports from Pakistan, said Pakistan's Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research, Sikandar Hayat Bosan. According to Pakistan Poultry Association former Chairman Abdul Basit, the ban was imposed after the bird flu outbreak in 2004. Pakistan sees the Middle East as a potential growth market for its halal meat, livestock and poultry products.
Asia Pacific most dominant market for aqua feed
[26 March 2015]
The global market for aqua feed is expected to reach USD 133.1 billion by 2020, according to a new study by Grand View Research. Increasing use of aquafeed in carp and crustacean farming is expected to boost market demand over the forecast period. In 2013 the global aqua feed demand was 37.60 million tonnes and is expected to reach 77.93 million tonnes by 2020, growing at a CAGR of 11% from 2014 to 2020. Asia Pacific was the most dominant regional market accounting for 65% of global consumption in 2013. The vast aquaculture industry particularly in China is expected to enhance the demand for aqua feed in the region over the next six years.
Higher fish and seafood prices in Philippines next week
[26 March 2015]
Philippine consumers can expect retailers to raise prices of fish and seafood with the ushering of the Holy Week next week, retailers said. In the predominantly Catholic country, demand for seafood and fish often goes up during this time, when the Catholic faithful tend to fast and abstain from meat.
Thai corn farmers rapped for open burning
[25 March 2015]
Open burning at corn plantations in Northern Thailand has been linked to the haze problem in that region. Pollution has reached unsafe levels in Chiang Rai, Mae Hong Son and Chiang Mai. Chiang Mai Natural Resource and Environment Office Director Jongkhlai Worapongsathon said those who promote corn growing and companies buying corn must take responsibility and promote alternative approaches to corn husk clearance. Companies under Charoen Pokphand Foods, or CPF, namely Bangkok Produce and Charoen Pokphand Produce, the major corn buyers said they did not support clearing in this manner and would work with the Agricultural Land Reform Office to promote sustainable corn planting and after harvest management.
Berdikari eyes 33.3% income growth
[25 March 2015]
Indonesia’s state owned company Berdikari that has an integrated beef cattle business expects its income this year to reach USD 69.3 million, a 33.3% increase from the previous year. Librato El Arif, President Director, said the company this year will focus more on processing. “We want to increase our frozen beef production. Last year we produced some 5000 tonnes from only our internal stock. This year we target to produce 6500 tonnes. To achieve this we will also buy cattle from farmers,” Mr Librato said. At the moment its breeding farm raises around 15,000 heads of Bali and Brahman cattle. To increase the breeding stock, it plans to import 2000 heads of Brahman cattle from Australia.
Growth in agro-industrial segment boosts Pure Foods revenue
[25 March 2015]
Philippines' San Miguel Pure Foods Company Inc’s (SMPFCI) revenue topped USD 2.3 billion in 2014. This was 3% higher than 2013 on expansion of its exclusive franchise outlets including Magnolia Chicken Stations and Monterey Meat Shops. In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, SMPFCI attributed its strong showing to higher volumes and better selling prices. Its operating income grew 17% to USD 145.3 million because of higher revenues, better efficiencies, and lower wheat costs. The company’s net income stood at USD 84.9 million while earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation was USD 196.6 million.

Sneak peak at Asian Pork Magazine, April 2015
[25 March 2015]

Premium pork products rising
There was a time when pork was available to Southeast Asian consumers only in freshly slaughtered form, but the introduction of further processed pork changed all that. The ASIAN AGRIBIZ team writes that today, premium pork products make up one of the fastest growing segments in the processed pork industry, and from all indications, will keep rising.

KPS to popularise black pig meat in Indonesia
Karya Prospek Satwa (KPS) is currently developing the black pig breed and introducing the meat known as Kurobuta pork to markets in Jakarta and Bali. ARIEF FACHRUDIN learns that the company will involve pig farmers in Bali, Toraja and East Nusa Tenggara to raise the pigs.

McQuarry Farm builds on genetics
In pig production, having good genetics, management and nutrition play key roles to ensure a successful operation. ISA Q TAN reports that McQuarry Farm has taken these to heart as it builds both its breeder and its commercial operations.

Great Dragon Farm picks up on opportunity
China’s villages are slowly emptying as rural residents move to the cities, but this is also giving entrepreneurs the opportunity to build larger pig farming operations. At the same time, the expanding rural road system allows these entrepreneurs to ship their product to urban markets. RICH HERZFELDER writes that the Zhangs of New Victory Village in Inner Mongolia are making the most of the opportunity.

Breeding sows benefit from NSP-degrading enzymes
During the days before and after farrowing, sows show low appetite with reduced feed intake, which can impair the reproductive cycle. KEVIN LIU and PIERRE COZANNET discuss a meta-analysis of recent trials which revealed the addition of NSP-degrading enzymes increased voluntary feed intake, reduced weight loss of 3 kg on average or 20%, and back-fat loss by 24% during lactation.

Protecting and enhancing meat quality with vitamin E
Meat quality deterioration can occur due to a number of factors, including genetics, improper practices in handling, storage and cooking.  However, lipid oxidation is probably the most substantive factor impacting commercially-crucial parameters such as colour, flavour and texture. The important role vitamin E can play in reducing meat deterioration and colour changes by combating the negative effects of oxidation is explained by GILBERTO LITTA.

Using feed more efficiently, naturally
Rising societal concerns about antibiotic resistance and residues from beta adrenergic agonists (ß-agonists) in products derived from animal production demands a new era of growth promoting substances. In particular, the ban of antibiotic growth promoters (AGPs) in the EU and other countries enforced the search for alternatives being able to replace the use of AGPs. CHRISTINE HUNGER explains that one potential successor is the group of phytogenic feed additives (PFAs).

Preview of Asian Agribiz 2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference
April 9-10, Ho Chi Minh City
[24 March 2015]

Widely recognised as one of Asia's premier scientific forums for industry professionals to update their knowledge on pig production, the Asian Agribiz 2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference brings the latest research and provides useful information for Asian pig and feed producers.  REGISTER TODAY - registrations close Thursday 26 March 2015. 

Presentations include;
NIR and moisture management in feed
Ivan Ward will consider ways moisture is measured in feed and ingredients, challenges with moisture analysis and opportunities during feed manufacturing to monitoring moisture content.   Monitoring the moisture levels of ingredients coming into the site is an important step in managing feed quality and limiting microbial growth.  Water activity, not water content, determines the lower limit of available water for microbial growth.  While temperature and pH can influence whether an organism will grow in a product and the rate of growth, water activity is the most important factor.
The role of creatine on growth performance and meat quality of pigs
Creatine is not thermostable thereby, it cannot withstand pelleting, however, an innovative form of guanidinoacetic acid (GAA) which a precursor of creatine can be a more suitable dietary source of creatine for pigs (and poultry).  Dr Maria Eloisa Carpena will review results, including a 2014 Vietnam trial, which indicate that the dietary supplementation of creatine may contribute to the improvement of growth performance like weight gain and feed efficiency of pigs.  Moreover, creatine supplementation may be used to improve meat quality parameters like drip loss, post mortem pH and visual colour.
Practical application of the latest in-line moisture system in determining feed quality
Jon Ratcliff will present the practical applications of the latest technology in-line moisture management based on microwave resonator technology which is both highly accurate and also can process up to 3,000 measurements per second, making it particularly well suited for measurements of fast flowing ingredients.  The technology now provides the feed industry with a solution that allows for real time moisture measurement and automated process control of moisture for the benefit of feed quality, stock control and process efficiency.
Effective prevention and control of galactomannan, an immunogenic factor in soybean meal
Dietary mannans/galactomannans occurring widely in feedstuffs, including soybean meal, have structures with the potential to be recognised by immune cells.  The energy cost of activating innate immune response is high, and a long-term and constant activation will cause damage to tissues, reducing carcass quality.  Dr Humg-Yu Hsiao will discuss effective prevention and control using a beta-mannanase enzyme.  After in-feed hydrolysis, the fragmented galactomannans lose their ability to activate immune response.
Improving the nutritional value of raw materials to increase sow’s feed intake
It is recommended to avoid a weight loss more than 5% of sow’s initial bodyweight to reduce adverse effects on subsequent reproduction.  In practice, however, it remains a real challenge for nutritionists to increase energy intake, reduce losses of body weight and backfat and ensure maximal milk production. Increasing feed intake: is very difficult as sows undergo drastic physiological changes, limiting their feed intake potential.  Dr Kevin Liu will review the use of NSP-degrading enzymes to alleviate the negative impact of sow feed intake on weight losses during lactation.
Role of proper steam conditioning to feed pelleting efficiency and feeding value
Steven Goh will examine how you need to approach steam conditioning for the best compromise between feed pellet quality, machine throughput efficiency, and feeding value of the processed pellet feeds.  He will also review the various problems affecting feed pelleting.

More details and registration form can be found here.

Thailand launches ‘strip test’ to detect beta agonists 
[24 March 2015]
The Swine Raisers Association of Thailand has handed over the ‘Strip Test’ equipment to the Department of Livestock Development (DLD). It will be used to detect the use of prohibited lean meat promoters at farms, slaughterhouses, retail shops and meat vendors in fresh markets, President Surachai Sutthitham told Asian Agribiz. This is to reduce and eradicate the use of beta agonists in pig rearing, he said. Lerdchai Chintapitaksakul, Director of DLD’s Veterinary Research and Development Centre (Eastern Region) also told Asian Agribiz that this equipment can provide fast results, will reveal in just five minutes if the pig and pig meat is contaminated. DLD will launch the use of this test kit this year, starting with slaughterhouses under the supervision of DLD, Dr Lerdchai said.
India begins buffalo meat export to Russia
[24 March 2015]
Two Indian companies, Fair Exports India Pvt. Ltd and Frigerio Conserva Allana Private Limited have started exporting buffalo meat to Russia. Russia’s Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance (Rosselkhoznadzor) said that the first 16 containers arrived in Russia through the checkpoint in St Petersburg. In December last year, four Indian companies were approved to supply buffalo meat to Russia. With buffalo meat exports worth USD 3.22 billion in the April-November 2014 period, it is India’s top agri export item. Among the top export destinations are Vietnam, Malaysia, Egypt, Thailand and Saudi Arabia.
Century Pacific exploring expansion
[24 March 2015]
Century Pacific Food Inc, the Philippines’ canned food company, is exploring “a wide range of opportunities to grow the business and expand into new markets,” the company said in a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE). A report by ManilaStandardToday cited Giovanna Vera, Century Pacific’s Investor Relations Officer, as saying that the company is looking to expand through organic growth or via acquisitions, especially in the canned food sector and that the company is “set to sell shares to fund acquisitions.” However, Ms Vera clarified with the PSE that the company’s plans “remain under study and are preliminary at this stage.”
Brookside gets 333 Hypor GGPs
[23 March 2015]
Brookside Breeding and Genetics Corp, in the Philippines received 333 Hypor GGPs last Saturday night. The animals, shipped via air cargo from France, included 263 heads of Large White (LW) GGP gilts, nine heads of LW GGP boars, 52 heads of Landrace GGP gilts and nine heads of Landrace GGP boars. Dr Sheryll Caguicla, who heads Brookside’s Swine Division, told Asian Agribiz that the animals will stock Brookside’s new and modern nucleus farm in Tarlac Province, Central Luzon. She said the animals will spend about 42 days in quarantine. Meanwhile, Dr Evaristo Macalino, Area Manager Asia for Hypor, said the new GGPs are meant to produce for the internal requirements of Brookside Farms.
Indonesia biggest shrimp exporter to US
[23 March 2015]
According the Indonesian embassy in Washington DC, USA, Indonesia was the biggest shrimp exporter to the country with a value of USD 93.5 million and a market share of 22.7% in January this year. According Ni Made Ayu Marthini, Trade Attache from the embassy, the product exported was frozen peeled shrimp. “The potential of shrimp is promising. That’s why Indonesia has to increase production, prevent EMS disease, as well as ensure food safety and quality,” she said. India was in second position with an export value of USD 91.4 million and a market share of 22.19%, followed by Ecuador with an export value of 51.1 million and 12.41% of market share. Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia had 10.7%, 8.3% and 3.49% of market shares respectively, with export values of USD 44.3 million, USD 34.2 million and USD 14.3 million.
Buffalo meat export industry not affected
[23 March 2015]
Legislative changes by Maharashtra and Haryana state governments in India banning beef has not affected the buffalo meat export industry, according to the All India Meat & Livestock Exporters Association in a statement. “Buffalo is a separate species from bullocks and the ban has no effect on slaughtering buffaloes”, the press release said adding that the buffalo meat industry uses only spent and unproductive livestock. The buffalo meat industry in India generates foreign exchange in excess of USD 5 billion per annum.
NZ, US press WTO for action against Indonesia
[23 March 2015]
New Zealand and the US have escalated a complaint against Indonesia to the World Trade Organisation on import restrictions that led to the collapse in New Zealand beef exports to Indonesia. The two countries have requested that a WTO dispute settlement panel look at the import barriers, kicking off a process that could lead to sanctions. Indonesia’s import restrictions cover animals and animal products as well as horticultural products. Tim Ritchie, New Zealand Meat Industry Association Chief Executive said that Indonesia subsequently tightened restrictions again and in January this year New Zealand beef exports to Indonesia slumped to only 28 tonnes, from 2,669 tonnes in January last year.
Goodman Fielder to extend reach in Asia
[23 March 2015]
Wilmar International Ltd and First Pacific Company Ltd have acquired 100% of Australian food processor Goodman Fielder. The new owners want to turn the consumer foods giant into a leading food company in Asia. The first brand to start selling in Asian supermarkets and convenience stores will be New Zealand-made Goodman’s Meadow Fresh UHT milk. The company hopes to leverage on the extensive distribution footprints of Wilmar and First Pacific in China, Indonesia, the Philippines and Southeast Asia to export Goodman Fielder’s brands. Wilmar and First Pacific are also investigating opportunities to bring some of Indofoods’ brands to Australia.
Pig producers urged to get ready for AEC
[20 March 2015]
The implementation of the Asean Economic Community is sure to challenge Philippine hog raisers, but there will also be opportunities, Eliseo Yu, Chairman of the Pork Producers Federation of the Philippines, said at the opening ceremonies of the 24th National Hog Convention and Exhibits yesterday. He called on fellow hog raisers to be “open and ready to tap all the opportunities that would come our way,” and be ready to compete not only with Asean neighbours but also with markets bigger and beyond Asean. The three-day convention will run until tomorrow, during which the 8th Backyard Hog Congress will also be held.
Exporters await Q2 cattle permits for Indonesia
[20 March 2015]
Indonesia issued just 100,000 permits for Australian cattle for the first three months of this year, which proved easy to fill for Australia’s live cattle trade and resulted in prices easing because of the supply and demand imbalance. The second quarter starts in a couple of weeks and exporters are hoping Indonesia will issue more than 200,000 permits. The Indonesian Beef Cattle Feedlotters Association has been lobbying the government to issue 250,000 import permits in Q2 and to allocate the permits as soon as possible. According to Bernie Brosnan from Wellard Rural Exports, if supply is tight heading into Ramadan, Indonesia is likely to fill the gap with extra permits for chilled boxed beef.
Arm & Hammer acquires Vi-COR, expands its team
[20 March 2015]
US Princeton based Arm & Hammer Animal Nutrition has announced the acquisition of Vi-COR, a manufacturer of fermented yeast based feed ingredients and Refined Functional Carbohydrates (RFC) earlier this year. This is followed by several new additions to its leadership, marketing and sales teams, as well as new roles for current team members. All Vi-COR products are now part of the Arm & Hammer family of brands. “In addition to adding to our product portfolio, we added significant resources to our sales, marketing, research & development and technology teams,” Scott Druker, Director of Arm & Hammer Animal Nutrition said.

Asian Agribiz regional dairy update
[20 March 2015]

Amul most trusted F&B brand in India, says report
Indian milk and milk products brand Amul has been ranked top in consumer confidence as reported in Brand Trust Report 2015. The home-grown food brand ranked first in the Food and Beverages category. R S Sodhi, Managing Director of Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation Ltd (GCMMF), which markets Amul said Brand Amul has become an integral part of the lives of the common man and is accepted as a true Indian brand. “Amul has always maintained its vision to provide quality products at affordable prices to consumers," Mr Sodhi added.

West Java to stop calf, heifer exports
In order to increase milk production in the province, the Animal Husbandry Agency in West Java plans to stop the export of female calves and heifers to other provinces in the country. Doddy Firman Nugraha, Head of the agency, said last years’ exports affected the production of milk in the province which stands at around 239,000 tonnes/year. “We will cooperate with milk cooperatives in West Java to prevent export so the number of cows can be increased.” In a month the province produces around 1000 female calves, half of which is produced in Lembang, Bandung regency.

Fonterra acquires 20% of China’s Beingmate Baby and Child Food Company
Fonterra Co-operative Group confirmed it will soon acquire 18.8% of leading Chinese infant formula manufacturer Beingmate Baby and Child Food Company Ltd. “Over the next few weeks, Fonterra and Beingmate will enter into the next phase of our partnership, which includes establishing a joint venture to purchase the Darnum plant in west Gippsland and finalising a distribution agreement making Beingmate Fonterra’s exclusive Anmum distributor in mainland China,” Lukas Paravicini, Fonterra’s CFO, said. The partnership will create a fully integrated global supply chain from farm gate direct to China’s consumers, using Fonterra’s milk pools and manufacturing sites in New Zealand, Australia, and Europe. The partnership is intended to increase the volume and value of Fonterra’s ingredients and branded products exported to China.

NZ sheep milk plant sold to HK company
New Zealand’s Blue River Dairy plant could see investments of up to USD 40 million following its sale to Blueriver (HK) Nutrition Co Ltd. Blue River, founded by Southland businessman Keith Neylon in 2003, converted three Southland sheep farms to dairying, generating about 1000 tonnes of sheep milk powder annually from 20,000 ewes. There are plans to expand to 100,000 ewes over the next few years, eventually producing more than 5000 tonnes of milk powder. Asia is the company’s main market. “We are now able to fully concentrate on milk production and let Blueriver Nutrition HK focus on the finished product,” Mr Neylon said.

Amul plans to market camel milk
Amul of India is planning to process and market camel milk. If the proposal is approved by the Food Safety and Standards Association of India (FSSAI), processing will begin at Amul’s Sarhad Dairy located in Gujarat state. Valamaji Humbal, Chairman of the Sarhad Dairy said that they are ready. “If the FSSAI approves it, one more production line will be added to the plant for processing camel milk,” he said. A similar initiative taken by Rajasthan Cooperative Dairy Federation (RCDF) was grounded in 2010 due to poor response from consumers. Considered to have several health benefits such as high insulin and vitamin content, camel milk is widely consumed in West Asia.

Thai Egg Board agrees to price lifting measures
[19 March 2015]
Thailand’s Egg Board agreed yesterday that release of surplus eggs from the system and early removal of spent hens are two urgent measures to tackle the current low egg price problem. Deputy Secretary General of the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives Wimol Jantrarotai said disposal of the egg surplus will be done via direct sale to consumers and exports and farmers will receive compensation of THB0.50 for each egg released. Farmers will receive compensation of THB 40 for early removal of each spent hen (1 USD = THB32.7). These measures are expected to reduce the oversupply by 1 million eggs per day. The Egg Board has to seek for approval from the national committee on farmer aid and policy regarding funding of the project prior to implementation.
Indonesia’s corn imports expected to drop to 2.5mt
[19 March 2015]
Indonesia’s corn imports are expected to drop to around 2.5 million tonnes this year, from 3.5 million tonnes in 2014, as higher domestic output relieves overseas purchases, traders said. “The domestic market expects to see imports start falling from April,” a trader said. He added that Indonesia had already imported 600,000 tonnes over January and February, and arrivals by the end of March would hit 960,000 tonnes, or close to 1 million tonnes. The country is likely to harvest 9.7 million tonnes of corn in 2015, up from 9 million tonnes a year ago.
Haryana government bans cow slaughter, beef sale
[19 March 2015]
Haryana government in India has passed a bill banning cow slaughter and sale of beef in the state. Anyone found guilty of cow slaughter or export of cows for the purpose of slaughter or sale of beef will face imprisonment of up to 10 years along with fines of up to USD 1600. The government will establish laboratories for differentiation of beef from meat of other animals. The new law will promote conservation and development of indigenous breeds of cows and establish institutions to keep, maintain and take care of the infirm, injured, stray and uneconomic cows.
Taiwan to adopt closed farming to curb AI
[19 March 2015]
Taiwan’s Council of Agriculture has announced that it will be mandatory from September for poultry farms in Taiwan to raise birds in closed spaces in an effort to curb the spread of the Avian Influenza virus. Farms affected by the bird flu outbreak totals 860 across the country. The measure is being implemented to prevent poultry from coming into contact with migratory birds. The council will offer a six months grace period to farmers for them to comply; but a fine will be imposed after that. Soft loans at an interest rate of 1.5% will be given to farmers to support the construction of the enclosures.
More countries to ban US poultry and eggs
[19 March 2015]
The US Poultry and Egg Export Council said it expects 30 to 40 countries to impose new trade restrictions on US poultry and eggs in the USD 5.7 billion export market. These include Mexico, the top US chicken importer, which already is blocking imports from Minnesota, Missouri and California due to bird flu. Previous cases of avian flu in other states triggered China and South Korea to impose bans, still in effect. Last year, they accounted for about USD 428.5 million in export sales of poultry meat and products, according to US Department of Agriculture data. Other countries have banned exports from only states or counties. Last week the government announced a case of bird flu in Arkansas, home of Tyson Foods Inc.

Singapore investor buys cattle station
[19 March 2015]
Singaporean Bruce Cheung has bought Pilbara Cattle station in remote Western Australia for USD 10.31 million. The cattle station covers 198,000ha and includes 60km of coast between Port Hedland and Broome. It is stocked with about 6000 head of Santa Gertudis cattle, including 4776 breeders. Garland International’s John Garland, who handled the sale, said Mr Cheung wants to elevate the cattle stock to restaurant quality by infusing different breeds into the Santa Gertrudis cattle. Mr Garland said Western Australia was poised to capture the growing trade — noting free-trade agreements and negotiations with China, South Korea and Japan.

NIR workshop limited to 20 participants
[18 March 2015]
A one-day workshop on Near Infrared Reflectance Spectroscopy (NIR) will be held in Ho Chi Minh City on Wednesday 8 April the day prior to the 2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference. This is to help pig feed producers utilise data to make decisions that can save money, and improve feed quality and animal performance. Presented by NIR expert, Ivan Ward (Agri-Torque Pty Ltd) it will be held in a modern computer lab and cover the challenges and opportunities of NIR. The workshop is limited to 20 participants. The cost of USD360 includes refreshments, lunch and workshop notes. Register your interest with Omthong Tjoa and Sutasinee Lake at events@asian-agribiz.com. Further information on Asian Agribiz's 2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference is available here.
Broiler DOC surplus this year worse than last year
[18 March 2015]
Between February and March 16, the price of live birds in Indonesia has decreased to USD 1.02/kg while the production cost is around USD 1.32. Sigit Prabowo, Chairman of the National Poultry Farmers Association, said this indicates that the market is still experiencing an oversupply. He said broiler DOC production last week reached 64 million while the actual demand is only around 45-47 million. “The broiler DOC surplus this year is worse than last year. If the government is not serious about overcoming this problem, more independent farmers will have to exit the industry. In the beginning of last year there were around 120,000 independent farmers, but the number has dropped to 40,000,” he revealed.
San Miguel Pure Foods boosts expansion overseas
[18 March 2015]
As it seeks expansion overseas, San Miguel Pure Foods Co Inc (SMPFCI), the Philippines’ leading food company, is looking to acquire food businesses including meat processing firms in neighbouring Southeast Asian countries. SMPFCI President Francisco Alejo III said the company is particularly looking at Indonesia and Vietnam, where it already has existing businesses. The company, which raised USD 338 million during its share sale last week, is eyeing about USD 180-225 million for its capital expenditure this year, part of which will be used for overseas acquisitions. Mr Alejo said they are hoping to finalise a deal in Vietnam within the year, although it may take a longer time for an Indonesian acquisition to materialise.
Nebraska looks to Asia to sell beef
[18 March 2015]
Last year the US state of Nebraska exported more than USD 1 billion in beef. A recent trip to Southeast Asia by Greg Ibach, State Department of Agriculture Director, signals that the state is eyeing the region to grow its market. While Malaysia poses unique challenges such as strict guidelines on slaughtering and processing, Mr Ibach said the Philippines showed more opportunities. The market for Nebraska beef in the Philippines has exploded in the last five years, up from USD 1 million a year, to around USD 8 million. Mr Ibach said Japan, Hong Kong and South Korea have had significant beef import increases during the past six years and are countries where the state has conducted focused promotion activities. Besides muscle cuts, he noted export growth over the past six years for livers and tongues. “The sales increases for these products are important since there is not much value for them in the US,” he said.
Price disagreement over buffalo meat exports to Russia
[18 March 2015]
Indian buffalo meat exports to Russia seem to be in a limbo as both parties cannot agree on prices, Russia’s Interfax news agency reported. Sergey Dankvert, Chief of Russia’s Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance (Rosselkhoznadzor) was quoted as saying that there seems to be some internal disagreement over prices. “The prices quoted by India were higher than that of Brazil, although earlier they claimed that the price was the most attractive,” he had said. In December 2014, Rosselhoznadzor approved four Indian companies to supply buffalo meat to Russia. However, no deliveries to Russia have been made yet.
AVA imposes import curbs on US poultry products
[18 March 2015]
Singapore’s Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) has suspended the import of ornamental birds, eggs, poultry and poultry products from Arkansas, California, Idaho, Minnesota, Missouri, Oregon and Washington due to bird flu outbreaks in these states. The AVA said only processed poultry products such as pasteurised eggs and canned chicken products, which have been heat treated to eliminate the bird flu virus, are excluded from the suspension. Before the suspension, imports from the US accounted for about 13% of Singapore’s total chicken supply.
Thai layer farmers call for fair egg prices
[17 March 2015]
Thai layer farmers have urged the government to help with egg pricing as there is a wide gap between farm gate price and retail price. Mongkol Pipatsattayanuwong, President of the Association of Hen-Egg Farmers, Traders and Exporters, said this is putting pressure on farmers who are already suffering losses from low price due to declining consumption partly prompted by relatively higher retail price. “While farm gate price is between THB 1.8- 1.9 per egg, much lower than the production cost of THB 2.50, the retail price is still as high as THB 3/egg.” (1 USD=THB 32.6). Mr Monkol urged the government to set a fair retail price to improve consumption. Otherwise, he said, many layer farmers might not be able to maintain their business.
Ban on beef expected to boost chicken sales in India
[17 March 2015]
With Maharashtra state in India banning beef and few other states set to toe the same line, chicken sales in some parts of India is set to pick up. Prasanna Pedgaonkar, Deputy General Manager of Venkateshwara Hatcheries said that since chicken is a direct alternative to beef, chicken consumption is set to increase in Maharashtra. It is expected that when other state governments in Haryana and Jharkhand ban beef in their respective states, it is set to result in an increase in chicken consumption at the national level.
EQT mulls selling Classic Fine Foods
[17 March 2015]
European private-equity firm EQT is considering divesting Classic Fine Foods, a Singapore-based importer and distributor of luxury French cheeses and high-end meats. The deal valued at USD 300 million, joins a list of private-equity firms looking to exit investments in Asia in recent months. The Wall Street Journal reported that EQT acquired Classic Fine Foods in 2011 for an undisclosed sum. The private-equity firm has been approached by several parties interested in the company, people with knowledge of the process said. The company has yet to launch a formal sale process.
Bird flu alert in Uttar Pradesh state
[17 March 2015]
India's Uttar Pradesh government has sounded a bird flu alert following the confirmation of an avian influenza outbreak in one of its districts. As many as 350 birds died recently in Chandgarh and Sare Ka Purwa in Amethi district. Laboratory tests confirmed the deaths were due to H5N1. Uttar Pradesh Chief Secretary Alok Ranjan has urged precautionary measures. The state is also battling swine flu.

Aquaculture outlook seminar in Jakarta, Indonesia
[17 March 2015]

Producing more but sustainably
Indonesia’s Minister of Fisheries and Marine Affairs, Susi Pudjiastuti, in her welcoming speech said that Indonesia has to be a dominant player in the world fisheries industry. “We plan to decrease capture fish by 10% each year, and increase aquaculture by the same figure each year,” Mrs Susi revealed, adding that more efforts are extended to fighting illegal fishing that is limiting fish supply to the local processing industry. Mrs Susi reminded stakeholders to consider sustainability. “I think we should re-evaluate the concept of monoculture or intensification. We have to learn from the case of shrimp intensification and early mortality syndrome (EMS) disease in Thailand and other countries. Polyculture is a solution for sustainable production.”

Fish export value of USD5.86b is achievable
Indonesia’s Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Affairs targets to export fish, including shrimp, worth USD 5.86 billion this year. The export value last year reached USD 4.63 billion with the US, EU, Canada and China being the main destinations. According to Thomas Darmawan, Chairman of the Fish Processors and Exporters Association (AP5I), the target is achievable since China, Thailand and Vietnam currently need shrimp for its processing industries, while their local production is still challenged by EMS. “However, the government has to actively help shrimp farmers to reactivate idle farms, especially in Lampung. This should be supported with good quality fry, adequate power supply and infrastructure,” said Mr Thomas.

Indonesia to benefit from shrimp supply shortage
Indonesia’s Shrimp Club (SCI) predicts that world shrimp supply this year will decrease by 20% as producing countries in Asia are still battling EMS. “This will cause the world shrimp price to escalate,” said Iwan Sutanto, SCI Chairman. Mr Iwan explained that Indonesia produced about 250,000 tonnes of shrimp last year (from semi intensive, intensive and integration farms). “This year we expect production to reach 315,000 tonnes,” said Mr Iwan. Shrimp fry production last year, meanwhile, reached 2 billion fries/month, and this year is expected to increase by 2.3 billion. “To leverage on this opportunity, farmers have to strengthen biosecurity, and use good quality fry and feed.”

Processed fish products gaining ground
Indonesia’s processed fish product export volume reached 5.2 million tonnes last year. This year the government targets to increase the volume by 5.6 million tonnes. AP5I Chairman Thomas Darmawan said demand for processed fish products for export and local markets is increasing. Sushi, tempura, breaded shrimp, nugget and surimi are in great demand. “Their success is due to innovative products and packaging,” said Mr Thomas. “The number of players in this segment is growing and they are investing in new cold storage facilities and product innovation."

Aqua feed consumption to reach 1.7 mt
Total aqua feed consumption in Indonesia last year reached 1.48 million tonnes, according to the Feed Millers Association (GPMT). Denny Indrajaya, GPMT Chairman for Aquaculture Division, said fish and shrimp feed consumption was 1.1 million and 390,000 tonnes respectively. Compared with 2013, fish feed consumption in 2014 was stagnant, while shrimp feed consumption increased by 30% due to an increase in demand for shrimp from international market. “This year we expect consumption of fish and shrimp feeds to reach 1.25 million and 468,000 tonnes respectively,” revealed Mr Denny. He added that the industry this year will still face currency depreciation and raw material price increases especially for fishmeal. To keep the price of fish and shrimp feeds reasonable, industry players should substitute fishmeal with meat bone meal, poultry meat meal, soybean meal and local fishmeal.

The role of feed additives in pig production
[16 March 2015]
Maximising the value of feed ingredients is crucial to producing quality pig feeds and save on cost. One way to maximise the value of these ingredients, as well as improve the health, welfare and performance of pigs and positively impact product quality and the environment, is to use feed additives. At the Pig Feed Quality Conference (PigFQC) organised by Asian Agribiz, a session on feed additives will tackle topics including the use of creatine in pig production; porcine bone health and the incidence of osteochondrosis; the future of copper as a growth promoter in pigs; reproductive function of breeding gilts exposed to zearalenone and a mycotoxin deactivator; and feeding of egg immunoglobulins to supporting the immune system of piglets during the first weeks of life. The PigFQC is scheduled for April 9-10, at the New World Saigon Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. More information and registration details are available here.
Indonesia’s beef self-sufficiency push will drive up price
[16 March 2015]
Plans by Indonesia’s new President to make the nation self-sufficient in beef are showing signs of backfiring, with a major industry group warning that prices could soar by 50% in the next few months. “The government is obsessed about self-sufficiency,” said Thomas Sembiring, Executive Director of the Indonesian Meat Importers Association (Aspidi). Beef imports is around 12,000 tonnes so far in Q1, versus 170,000 tonnes for the whole of 2014. The live cattle quota for the same period is just 100,000 head compared with a total of 720,000 last year. “The live trade is not a switch on or off industry,” said Alison Penfold, Chief Executive at the Australian Livestock Exporters Council. “The uncertainty coupled with an increasing shortfall in cattle in Indonesia to meet domestic demand will no doubt impact consumers, particularly during Ramadan.”
Haryana and Jharkhand set to ban sale of beef
[16 March 2015]
Close on the heels of Maharashtra in India banning beef recently, Haryana and Jharkhand states are set to ban the sale of beef. Animal Husbandry Minister of Haryana, O P Dhankar announced recently in Chandigarh that the state government will impose a complete ban on the sale of beef. “The law will be more stringent with a 10-year imprisonment for those found guilty of cow slaughter,” he said. In a similar development, Jharkhand Chief Minister Raghubar Das hinted that his government plans to follow Maharashtra in banning the sale of beef.
McDonald’s to raise the bar with antimicrobial ban
[16 March 2015]
In the Global Vision for Antimicrobial Stewardship in Food Animals document, McDonald’s said it will ban antimicrobial drugs defined as ‘critically important’ to human medicine in its supply chain. The policy will be rolled out to its US suppliers over the next two years. Among the drugs are lipopeptides, oxazolidinones, glycopeptides, carbapenems, third or newer generation tetracyclines and fifth or newer generation cephalosporins. For classes of antimicrobial drugs identified as critically important to human medicine and approved for food animal use, its use in animal health care is “contingent on local regulations and veterinary authorisation” said the document. McDonald's however, encouraged producers to rely on husbandry practices, instead of antimicrobials to prevent disease in food animals.
Indonesia to set up 58 fish cold storage units
[16 March 2015]
The Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Affairs plans to set up 58 fish cold storage units located close to fishing centres this year. Saut P Hutagalung, Director General of Fish Processing and Marketing, said the units will be set up in 34 regencies including North Maluku. “The cold storage units will be followed with the setting up of 38 ice plants and the procurement of 10 reefer trucks. This will cost around USD 18 million,” he said. Between 2009 and 2014, the ministry set up 70 cold storage units with different capacities starting from 100 to 1500 tonnes in different regions. Yugi Prayanto, Vice Chairman of the Indonesian Industry and Trade Chamber for Fisheries and Aquaculture, commented that the ministry’s initiative will attract local and foreign investments. “To complete the initiative, the government should also ensure the supply of power.”
Smithfield asks judge to bar reference to Chinese ownership
[16 March 2015]
Smithfield Farms, which is fighting lawsuits over hog waste in the US, has asked a federal judge to forbid the plaintiffs to mention that Smithfield is owned by a Chinese company, WH Group. The suits, filed on behalf of several hundred residents of North Carolina, allege that the company’s hog waste lagoons are affecting health and property values. The plaintiffs also said Smithfield is owned by a Chinese company and controlled by a high-ranking Communist Party member, and is planning to expand operations to ship more pork to China. In their filing, Smithfield’s lawyers said the farms have been in production for many years and the fact that the company is now Chinese-owned is irrelevant to the nuisance dispute. Smithfield’s lawyers say the plaintiffs are only emphasising the China angle in order to “inflame nationalist prejudices” among potential jurors in the case. The Smithfield request was filed in January, and the Centre for Investigative Reporting posted a story on its website last week.

VIV Asia 2015, Bangkok Thailand, March 11-13
Onsite reports by the ASIAN AGRIBIZ team
[13 March 2015]

MeatTech 2015 shows participants the potential in automation
Food processing plants today are more than stainless steel machines and conveyor belts. Participants at the two-hour MeatTech Asia 2015, organised by Asian Agribiz at VIV Asia in Bangkok, were shown the latest in processing and packaging technology to increase yield, promote food safety and reduce labour. Presenter Berry Klerks from MPS Red Meat Slaughtering introduced robotic arms to accomplish labour intensive, precision and repetitive tasks such as cutting open pig carcasses. Marco Kreienborg from Poly-clip System said the company wants to work with producers to find solutions in the packaging line. Silva Kumar from Provisur Technologies Inc said food producers in the region are adopting automated processes because of the shrinking pool of human and natural resources. Hugo Dissing from Linco Food Systems showed participants how carbon dioxide stunning saves time, reduces bruising, damage and miss-cuts. Jeroen Bohm from Meyn Food Processing said automation at plants are modular systems allowing processors to basic and simple designs that can develop with the growth of a company.

Danish Farm Concept brings pig production success to Asian producers
Danish producers are known globally for good pig production, averaging 30 pigs per sow per year.  This success is based on a production model that includes modern farm design, efficient pig farm technology, Danish genetics, nutrition program, sustainable solution and training and management. A group of Danish companies working together launched at VIV Asia 2015 the Danish Farm Concept, a company and brand name that represents the entire Danish pig production model. These companies include Hamlet Protein, Danbred International, Vissing Agro, Danish Farm Design and Dalum Landbrugsskole. Working together with Skov A/S, a leading producer of climate control, these companies now market the Danish Farm Concept throughout the world.

FPT-installed warehousing system to be ready in June
Food Process Technology Co Ltd’s (FPT) second installation of a fully automatic warehouse logistics system in Thailand will be ready in June this year. The system, built similar to European standards for a large sausage maker in the country, will feature radio-frequency identification, or RFID, that stores data in microchips to identify and track fresh and frozen meat from the time it is received at the processing plant right up to when the products are sent out to retailers, Axel Arras, Managing Director, told Asian Agribiz. Data is keyed into the RFID tags on the blue boxes holding the raw materials. “The system will be the most advanced warehouse system for food processing in the region. It is fast and promotes food safety,” he said adding that FPT has also installed a similar system for a food processor in China.

Biomin unveils fifth generation of Mycofix
International feed additives company Biomin unveiled Mycofix 5.0, a fully reformulated, all-in-one mycotoxin risk management solution for livestock. The fifth evolution of Mycofix product line uses three modes of action namely biotransformation, adsorption and bioprotection to deliver absolute protection against mycotoxins. In addition, the company yesterday staged the second edition of its ‘Mycotoxins in Focus: Trends, Facts, and Effects’ conference. Dr Shu Guan, Technical Manager for Mycotoxin Management, said serious strategies are needed to counteract multiple mycotoxins that are commonly found in individual material. “Mycotoxin profile varies among regions and its contamination level fluctuates and it is hard to predict,” he said. 

Petersime introduces two new incubators
Belgium-based Petersime introduced two new incubators to meet the demand for high density and fertility restoration. BioStreamer HD is a single-stage incubator that was designed to reduce the investment cost of a hatchery project and is engineered for higher capacity. Rudy Verhelst, Marketing Manager, explained that the honeycomb structured setter tray of the incubator allows setting 12% more eggs on the same surface while keeping the airflow between the eggs optimal. BioStreamer Re-Store, meanwhile, is a dedicated incubator for fertility restoration of stored eggs. This incubator warms up the eggs for short periods of time during storage, restoring a significant part of the hatch decrease.

Kohshin launches slat cleaner
Japan-based livestock equipment supplier Kohshin Engineering launched a semi-automatic slat cleaner for poultry cages. Kotone Asano from the Overseas Section of the Sales Division, said the slat cleaner is compact and portable and is designed for time and cost savings. Its weight is only 180kg and has a conveyor with a speed range of 30-100 mm/sec. Ms Asano added that the company took the opportunity at the show to promote its composters and robot washer that are gaining ground in Asia.

Kemin builds ruminant portfolio
Kemin Industries in Asia is building a dedicated team to service the ruminant sector in Asia and with a view to be a partner in its progress. Its new feed technology unit focuses on quality, efficiency and safety of feed with a target to improve milk production and the quality and yield of meat in ruminants.

Orvia to market Pekin duck variety in Asia
France based Orvia specialising in genetic selection of ducks has planned to aggressively market its Pekin duck variety in Asia. Vincent Baumier, Export Sales Director of Orvia told Asian Agribiz that the Pekin duck variety is more suitable for Asian countries because it is economic and efficient. “Our focus is to develop and sell GGP and GP of this variety in Asia particularly in South East Asian countries,” he said. According to him, they are already a major player in Europe with around 75-80% market share and is hopeful of extending their reach in Asia.

Pericoli promotes complete ventilation system
Pericoli showcased its new products at VIV Asia. “Our presence in the Asia Pacific region is important,” Director Enrico Viscardi told Asian Agribiz.  New fans including ACF26 that increases air flow by 10% and consume 5% less energy and the premium EWD 37 exhaust fan for multiple applications with innovative shutter opening mechanism were among the highlights. “We distribute not only the components but complete systems that help livestock operators improve farming efficiency,” Mr Viscardi said.

Pancosma introduces TakTik
Pancosma has been promoting TakTik, an innovative synergistic solution for young animals. It has multiple actions on gut health and efficiency and promotes glucose absorption, increases gut defences and acts on the animal’s epithelial structure by stimulating intestinal development. Together this results in better feed intake, improved gut defence, good weight gain and lower FCR.

Symaga to expand into Indonesia and Thailand
Symaga which manufactures steel silos is looking to expand its market to Indonesia and Thailand. Raul Perez, Area Sales Manager of the silos division told Asian Agribiz that there is huge potential for feed storage in Indonesia and rice storage in Thailand. “We are looking to tap this and expand considerably in these markets in the next five years,” he said. Silos manufactured by Symaga are widely used in the poultry and swine industry. According to him, Symaga offers customised silos and guarantees that it can handle any project.

VIV Asia 2015, Bangkok Thailand, March 11-13
Onsite reports by the ASIAN AGRIBIZ team
[12 March 2015]

MeatTech Asia 2015 - Automation Rules
At MeatTech Asia 2015 this morning, organised by Asian Agribiz, a group of processing equipment manufacturers will discuss how their systems and products are helping slaughterhouse operators and meat processors improve quality, efficiency, to speed up processing, manage food safety and reduce costs in terms of manpower, floor space and energy.

Presentations will include:

• 'Advances in automation to further increase profitability in poultry deboning' by Jeroen Bohm, Product Manager Deboning Solutions, Meyn Food Processing BV, Netherlands

• 'Automating the Food Industry since 1919' by Hugo Dissing, International Sales Director, Linco Food Systems A/S (Member of the Baader Group), Denmark

• 'Adapting automated processes are a must' by Silva Kumar, Engineered Systems and Service Manager, Provisur Technologies Inc, Bangkok, Thailand

• ‘RMS Slaughtering automation’ by Berry Klerks, Area Sales Manager, MPS Red Meat Slaughtering BV, Netherlands

• 'State of the art and most efficient handling, packaging, and clipping of fresh poultry products' by Mr Marco Kreienborg, Product Manager - Packaging, Clipping, and Automation Poultry Division, Poly-clip System GmbH & Co KG, Germany

• 'Latest and most advanced fully automatic fresh meat/poultry warehouse systems, further meat preparation, and sausage production' by Mr Axel Arras, Managing Director, FPT Food Process Technology Co Ltd, Thailand

• 'An introduction to Active & Intelligent Packaging Solutions for Meat, Fish & Poultry' by Andrew Manly, Communication Director AIPIA, Thailand

Join us at Room 222 from 11am – 1pm. Admission is free.

XVET introduces fatty acid product
German-based XVET introduced its short and medium chain fatty acids product NovoVital at the show. The product is effective against certain enteric bacteria, some stages of protozoa, fungi and some fat-enveloped viruses that are common in animal production. The product also supports intestinal integrity and increases feed efficiency. Katerina Todoroska from the sales and marketing Department said that the product is stable and non-corrosive. It is available in liquid and dry form for use in poultry, ruminants and swine. In addition, the company also introduced its two botanical products namely GarVit Pro and OregoPlus as alternatives to antibiotics.

Norel promotes five key product lines
Spain-based feed additives company Norel promoted its five key product lines namely probiotic, sodium butyrate, flavour, rumen enhancer and organic minerals. Juan José Mallo, Technical and Commercial Director, said that the five product lines are classified into non-medicated feed additives. The company focuses more on these kinds of products since it believes that sooner or later the use of antibiotics in Asia will be prohibited. “And our company is concerned about food safety and traceability,” Mr Mallo added. The five product lines are sold under the brands of Ecobiol, Gustor, Fluidarom, Rumalato and Biomet and Glymet, respectively.

Darling promotes specialty products
Darling Ingredients that was established by the largest American and European rendering companies took the opportunity at the show to introduce its company and products. Geert van der Velden, Sales Manager of Sonac, part of Darling Ingredients group, said: “At this show we are promoting our specialty products which consist of spray-dried products, hydrolised products, and products with special benefits like to increase palatability and gut health and to reduce antibiotics use. In addition, we are also promoting an alternative source of cholesterol and plasma proteins.” According to Mr van der Velden, the Asian poultry, pig and aqua feed markets are growing significantly, “so it’s important to intensively promote our specialty products besides supplying commodities like MBM and fats to the markets.”

Enzymes to reduce dependence on feed antibiotics
Consumers in Asia are concerned about the use of antibiotics in food animals. Countries such as South Korea have banned the substance. “The use of antibiotics on farms will not go away even after AGPs are removed however feed additives such as enzymes based on their role in improving gut environment can be used to reduce dependence on feed antibiotics,” said Dr Ajay Awati, Global Product Manager for Enzymes at the animal nutrition division of DuPont Industrial Biosciences. Dr Awati in a presentation said enzymes such as carbohydrases can help reduce microflora overgrowth and activity in the small intestines and help better microbial fermentation in the large intestines. Enzyme combinations such as xylanase, amylase and protease, when used in combination with other additives such as essential oils and probiotics can produce a synergistic performance response and improve gut microbial environment. These effects of enzyme applications will play a vital role in transition towards reduced AGP use in animal production.

Sanovo innovates for small players
Small layer farms in Asia are growing in capacity. The younger generation wants to take the family business one step further by grading eggs. Sanovo Technology Group has the right solution. At VIV Asia 2015 the company is promoting its 4-grade Staalkat Farmgrader 80, a compact machine that is easy to clean, and not noisy. “Because it is compact it can even be placed in the hen house,” said Chew Yee Fat, Group Technical Support Manager.  “It is ideal for farms that supply directly to food chains where only a certain weight is required. Weight classes are programmable with a touch screen,” he said. The machine can process 80 trays or up to 28,000 eggs per hour. Mr Chew said the new concept was originally used in the hatchery. Sanovo also showcased a newly-designed egg breaker for the Asian market, capable of processing 21,800 eggs per hour.

Impex Barneveld automates flushing drinking lines
Clean water is essential for healthy poultry but flushing the drinking line is tedious work and farmers do not flush them as often as they should. Impex Barneveld’s new flushing control, called the I-Control, makes the task an easy one. A computer setting can determine how many times the drinking line should be flushed, the amount of water used, and at what temperature. “The I-Control has standard programs to flush broiler and layer houses,” said Olaf van Steenis, Area Manager. “An additional feature is the option to flush and fill all the drinking lines at once. This is ideal for adding vitamins, medicines and vaccinations to the drinking water as the first and the last nipple of the drinking line will maintain the same amount of concentration,” he said.

Anitox trains eyes on Asia with new appointments
US-based Anitox is focused on microbes control in animal feed and promoting feedmilling efficiency. Besides these areas the company also looks into raising pet food standards and has a foot in the biofuel industry. “In a world where drug resistance is a major concern, our role is to reduce dependency on antibiotics,” said Richard Chong, Commercial Director for Asia Pacific. He said the company is expanding its team in Asia. By mid-2015 its new Indonesian office will be opened. The company recently introduced Rika Dachni Riantika as its Indonesian Country Manager, Ratchai Leethochawalit as its Regional Technical Sales Manager for Indochina, Daru Mukarta as Account Service and Installations Manager, and Gino Lorenzoni as Technical Services Director. According to Dr Chong, Asia has been placed as a key area of focus for the group after its restructuring in January 2014.

Roxell launches CoMeo
Roxell launched CoMeo, a new feeder for broilers at VIV Asia 2015. CoMeo is a new solution that gives birds’ easier access to feed from day 1 to harvest. Ben Dehaeck, Roxell’s Product Manager-Broilers, explained to Asian Agribiz that among CoMeo’s advantages is its shape that prevents birds from staying inside the pan, giving all birds full access to the feed at all times and maximising feed intake. Because the birds do not stay in the pan, do not scratch and spill the feed so feed wastage is minimised. The CoMeo, which can be used on both slatted floors or in broiler cages, is also easy to clean and maintain.

Delacon introduces Biostrong Forte in Asia
Delacon introduced Biostrong Forte to its Asian customers at VIV Asia 2015 in Bangkok yesterday. Delacon CEO Markus Dedl told Asian Agribiz that Biostrong Forte combines the beneficial effects of its phytogenic product with short and medium chain fatty acids. Biostrong Forte not only increase nutrient digestibility, improves feed efficiency and reduces noxious gas emission, but also controls and reduces common critical intestinal health challenge periods in the bird’s life. This leads to improved intestinal health, lower mortality and overall better performance of the birds.

Grimaud Freres genetic trial shows promising results
Grimaud Freres Selection promoted its broiler STAR 53 duck at VIV Asia and revealed a new scientific test that evaluates the best genetic expression of the breed. The test, in collaboration with Thailand’s Kasetsart University and one of Grimaud's client's Duck King Co, with a different kind of feed formulated with DSM nutritional products, was been completed at the beginning of 2015 and offered positive results, Yann Le Pottier told Asian Agribiz. The test shows positive rearing performance, with live weight at 3.54 kg at 45 days of age, average body weight gain of 77.53g/day and FCR improvement of up to 1.82.  “This better performance makes duck a more competitive meat,” Mr Le Pottier said.

Nuscience Group to focus on marketing Aromabiotic products
Belgium based Nuscience Group will focus on marketing its Aromabiotic range of products in Asia. Katrien Deschepper, Chief Operating Officer of Nuscience Group told Asian Agribiz that the Aromabiotic range of products is available separately for poultry and pigs. “This is a carefully balanced mixture of medium chain fatty acids (MCFA) with unique antimicrobial, physiological and immunological properties,” she said. According to her, industry players in Asia have started showing interest in reducing antibiotics.

Innovad to expand its research team
Animal feed additives manufacturer Innovad is expanding its research team at its headquarters in Belgium. “Our Escent and Escent L products are extremely popular in Asia and we are planning to bring in more technologies to our existing market,” Ben Letor, Director, Innovad told Asian Agribiz. Adding that the Escent range of products supports the liver and kidneys of the animals, he said that they are among only a few feed additives manufacturer to provide feed additives in liquid as well as dry form. “Our market penetration in Malaysia is good and we plan to make inroads into other markets in Asia,” Mr Ben Letor added.

Importance of feed enzymes, selenium and methionine
The technical seminar ‘Shaping nutrition for tomorrow’ organised by Adisseo discussed the importance of feed enzymes, selenium and methionine. Dr Pierre-Andre Geraert, Director, Innovation Marketing for Adisseo explained about the function of feed enzymes. “Feed enzymes reduce gut inflammation in poultry and has a significant effect on gut function,” he said. According to him, quality evaluation of raw materials will help to better value enzymes in feed formulation. Dr Kevin Liu, Vice President of Adisseo Acia Pacific did a presentation on new research about methionine and its impact.

VIV Asia 2015, Bangkok Thailand, March 11-13
Onsite reports by the ASIAN AGRIBIZ team
[11 March 2015]

VIV Asia 2015 opens in Bangkok
VIV Asia 2015 opens in Bangkok, Thailand today and will end on March 13. The show at BITEC features an additional temporary structure next to the permanent halls at the showground to accommodate more exhibitors. The show traditionally known for promoting the production and processing of poultry, pork, meat and eggs also has additional components like Aquatic Asia and DairyTech conferences and pavilion areas arranged for the aquaculture and milk businesses. The show will open each day from 10am to 6pm.

Asian Agribiz hosts MeatTech Asia 2015
The growing demand for animal protein has registered affirmatively for equipment suppliers. Their systems are helping slaughterhouse operators and meat processors improve efficiency, to speed up processing, manage food safety and reduce costs in terms of manpower, floor space and energy. Asian Agribiz and its partners in the meat processing industry will offer information and insights into how modern processors can comply with and improve food safety standards with the use of modern processing systems at MeatTech Asia 2015 on March 12 from 11am – 1pm at Room 222, BITEC.

Utilising farm optimally means good management of pigs
For many pig producers, productivity is measured by the number of pigs produced per sow per year, but Niels Thing, Production Manager at Engholm/Krogsgaard, a 1200 sow herd in Denmark producing 42,000 piglets annually, said that this does not necessarily mean that the farm facility is being utilised optimally. At the ‘State of the Art in Swine Production’ Summit organised by Ceva Animal Health Asia in Bangkok yesterday, Mr Thing said the aim is to control and improve numbers and quality of pigs produced in every batch and to have a good production flow. One way this can be done is by using Altresyn, which suppresses oestrus and allows farm managers to schedule reproduction. This leads to optimised productivity and improved pig flow and better performance. He reiterated however that Altresyn is only a valuable tool only if it is used properly.

Ceva layer summit discusses ventilation, respiratory disease management
Ceva Animal Health Asia's ‘State of the Art in Layer Production Summit’ held in Bangkok yesterday ahead of VIV Asia 2015, addressed ventilation techniques that leads to the uniformity of the layer flock. Proper insulation and a proper air inlet system are recommended. Guidance on the technique was presented by Michael Czarick III from the University of Georgia. “With proper ventilation, moisture in the layer house can be controlled and that will promote a uniform environment which in turn will result in a uniform flock,” he said. Dr Marcelo Paniago of Ceva also addressed vaccination strategies as part of respiratory disease management.
Asia an important region for DSM
Asia is an important region for the growth of DSM Nutritional Products’ business. “We see Asia as an important market. We look forward to our growth in the region as the population, livestock industry and demand for animal protein continues to increase,” Mark Stock, President for Animal Nutrition & Health, told Asian Agribiz. To support the growth, the company recently opened a representative office in Bangladesh and has plans for more representative offices across Asia. “The representative offices will draw us closer to our customers, support their needs and offer solutions,” Mr Stock said. DSM recently opened an animal nutrition centre in China and plans to expand its work with universities. It also has plans for additional lines at its existing premix plants such as in the Philippines and to set up new plants in emerging Asian markets.

DSM discusses broiler performance, uniformity
Performance and uniformity are important challenges in broiler production. This topic was discussed yesterday at the DSM Nutritional Products technical forum in Bangkok, Thailand. Prof John Brake from the Prestage Department of Poultry Science, NS State University of the US, addressed an integrated management approach to improve broiler performance. He said that a study demonstrated that maintaining feed increases and body weight gain of broiler breeder males increases fertility and broiler performance. Dr Pim Langhout, DSM Director of Nutrition ANH Europe, said first week performance is important in modern fast growing broilers, so early access to feed is key. Fernando Cisneros, DSM Global Category Manager – Carotenoids, meanwhile spoke about benefits of Carophyll in strengthening vitelline membrane, increasing hatchability, fertility and egg production, and reducing early embryonic mortality. Two DSM Regional Technical Managers, Dr Rider Perez and Dr Salim Bootwalla, spoke about how to maximise amino acid from feed ingredients in broiler diets and effect of Ronozyme ProAct on amino acid digestibility in regional feed ingredients in broilers, respectively.

Victam Asia to return to Bangkok in 2016
Victam Asia will return to Bangkok, Thailand from March 29-31, 2016 at BITEC. Henk van de Bunt, Victam International BV General Manager, said yesterday during a press conference in Bangkok that the show will exhibit equipment, technology and ancillary systems required for the safe and effective production of feeds for livestock and aqua species, dry pet food and biomass pellet production. The show is co-located with Grapas Asia 2016 (a trade show for grain processing and storage) and FIAAP Asia 2016 (a trade show for feed ingredients, additives and formulation). Pornsil Patchrintanakul, President of the Thai Feed Mills Association, said that the association fully supports the shows since it will help improve the feed industry in the region with new advanced technology and solutions.

VIV Asia 2015, Bangkok Thailand, March 11-13
[10 March 2015]

Ag companies pitch technology to media
Twenty-eight companies and agricultural organisations pitched their latest technologies and products at VIV Asia 2015’s Meet the Press event in Bangkok yesterday. The companies made short pitches to reporters and photographers representing both local and international media, including Asian Agribiz. Companies in the feed, animal husbandry and processing sectors all took part in the presentations, which were followed by round-robin interviews with the assembled members of the press. The event took place at the Fahrenheit restaurant at the Bangkok International Trade and Exhibition Centre (BITEC), where the three-day VIV Asia 2015 trade fair kicks off on Wednesday.

IEC addresses egg branding and layer management at forum in Bangkok
More than 80 egg industry participants gathered at the two-day ‘IEC Asia leadership Forum’ which started yesterday in Bangkok. Organised by the International Egg Commission to discuss driving growth in egg consumption and improvement in layer management, ‘branding’ was the topic addressed with Han Zhaopeng from DQY, a market leader in China. He shared their experience with marketing eggs in China through branding. Andrew Joret from Noble Foods (UK) presented a case study. “Branding is not just labelling…you have to distinguish for consumers to buy your products,” said Mr Joret. Jan Dirk van der Klis from Delacon spoke about heat stress and the effect on layer performance while Dr Dough Grieve from Hy-Line addressed maximising productivity.

Today's diary
• Ceva Animal Health – Broiler, Layer and Swine seminars at Centara Grand Hotel at Central World, World Ballroom, starting at 0900 hrs.
• DSM Nutritional Products – Seminar titled ‘Broiler performance & uniformity’ at JW Marriot Hotel @ 1500hrs.
• Elanco – the ‘New Elanco’ launch party @ The Okura Prestige Bangkok starting at 1730hrs
• FIAAP, VICTAM & GRAPAS Asia 2016 – Press Conference @ JW Marriot Hotel @ 1500 hrs
• Progressus, Kasetsart University, Agentis Innovations and AgJobs Asia - Dinner @ Royal Dragon Restaurant @ 1800 hrs.

CPF feed labs receive global standard certification
[10 March 2015]
Three feed laboratories of Charoen Pokphand Foods Pcl (CPF) in Ratchaburi,Hat Yai and Phitsanulok have received the ISO/IEC 17025 certification from the Ministry of Science and Technology of Thailand. Patthanee Leksrisompong, CPF’s Executive Vice President said the certification confirms the competence of the labs to carry out tests and calibrations, including sampling using Near Infrared Spectrometers (NIR) that analyses the quality of raw material and completed products as well as support research and development of CPF’s feed quality. “Modern, high quality and high accuracy labs allow us to produce high quality and safe feeds," she said.
India to start exporting buffalo meat to Russia in May
[10 March 2015]
India’s buffalo meat exports to Russia is likely to start in 6-8 weeks, Santosh Sarangi, Chairman, Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority said. Three months after formal approval to import buffalo meat, Russia’s veterinary and phytosanitary service Rosselkhoznadzor has appointed an inspector for India. The inspector will visit buffalo meat processing plants, packing houses and other stakeholders involved in meat exports. Until recently, Russia was among a number of countries which had banned import of meat and poultry products from India, due to an earlier foot and mouth disease outbreak.
Brazil delays WTO filing on exports to Indonesia
[10 March 2015]
Brazil has delayed lodging its complaint to the WTO on the chicken export ban by Indonesia. Syukur Iwantoro, Director General of Livestock and Animal Health of Indonesia’s Ministry of Agriculture said: “Still we must remain prepared. Indonesia is in a strong position to ban the import of chicken carcasses and portioned cuts from Brazil. And we are sure to win if Brazil files a complaint.” According to him, Brazil has not been able to comply with the halal provisions required by the Indonesian Ulema Body, overall review and individual slaughter. Commenting on the same issue, Anton J Supit, Chairman of the Indonesian Poultry Companies Association said that this news will encourage farmers. “If Brazilian chicken is allowed into the Indonesian market, the price of local chicken will be disrupted.”

VIV Asia 2015, Bangkok Thailand, March 11-13
Asian Agribiz’s recommendations
[09 March 2015]

In conjunction with VIV Asia 2015, a number of events, conferences and seminars will take place in Bangkok, Thailand. On today are the International Egg Commission Conference at the Shangri-la Hotel and later in the day, the VIV Meet the Press event at Fahrenheit Restaurant, BITEC @ 1430 hrs.

On March 10:
• Ceva Animal Health – Broiler, Layer and Swine seminars at Centara Grand Hotel at Central World, World Ballroom, starting at 0900 hrs.
• DSM Nutritional Products – Seminar titled ‘Broiler performance & uniformity’ at JW Marriot Hotel @ 1500hrs.
• Elanco – the ‘New Elanco’ launch party @ The Okura Prestige Bangkok starting at 1730hrs
• FIAAP, VICTAM & GRAPAS Asia 2016 – Press Conference @ JW Marriot Hotel @ 1500 hrs
• Progressus, Kasetsart University, Agentis Innovations and AgJobs Asia - Dinner @ Royal Dragon Restaurant @ 1800 hrs.

Pangasius exports make slow recovery
[10 March 2015]
Pangasius exports from Vietnam made USD 1.76 billion in profits last year, representing a slight year-on-year increase of 0.4%. The category also represented 22% of total seafood sales abroad, compared to 26% last year. According to statistics from the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers, exports to the European Union and the US, the two largest importers of pangasius, decreased from 22% in 2013 to 19% for each market. The decline in exports to the EU was due to lower import demand, stricter inspection on chemicals and antibiotics, and abundant supply of white meat fish like cod. In the case of the US, the decrease in pangasius exports was the result of the antidumping imposed on frozen pangasius fillet imported from Vietnam, which was double the preliminary result.
CPF to buy CP Cambodia's business
[09 March 2015]
The board of Thai food giant Charoen Pokphand Foods (CPF) has approved plans to buy the poultry business of CP Cambodia (CPC). CPF, which wants to expand its business overseas, is looking to take its stake in CPC from 25% to 100%. The acquisition of the rest of the business will cost USD 87.88 million. Adirek Sripratak, President and CEO, said CPC is “a leading player in the Cambodian agro-industrial business”. CPC’s total revenue was approximately USD 256 million in 2014, with a net profit of USD 22.94 million. Most of CPC’s revenues were derived from its swine and poultry business, the Thai group noted. In a statement, Charoen Pokphand Foods said, “The acquisition of CPC will enhance CPF’s position as a leading agro-industrial business operator in Indochina market which has strong growth potential."
Staving off heat stress
[09 March 2015]
Countries in Southeast Asia can expect dry weather and rising temperatures until April due to the equinox at the end of March. Farmers are encouraged to keep their poultry and livestock comfortable to avoid heat stress which can cause sudden death. Dr Lim Hang Chern, Techno Commercial Manager of RhoneMa Malaysia, said when it's hot, birds reduce their feed intake and this can lead to slower growth. He advised farmers to increase the fat content in feed. “In this way the digestion process will not generate too much heat compared to energy sourced from starch and protein,” he told Asian Agribiz. Dr Lim said the normal temperature range for poultry is between 40.6 - 43 degrees.
Indonesia targets to produce 785,900t of shrimp
[09 March 2015]
Indonesia is aiming to be the largest shrimp producer in Asia. The Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Affairs has said that the production of shrimp (vannamei and black tiger) this year is targeted to reach 785,900 tonnes. Minister of Fisheries and Marine Affairs, Susi Pudjiastuti said to achieve the target the ministry will encourage farmers to reactivate idle farms and increase productivity at existing farms through the adoption of more advanced technology.
US panel gives the thumbs up for eggs
[09 March 2015]
The US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee recently removed warnings about dietary cholesterol, saying there is no link to dangerous levels of blood cholesterol that cause disease. “I’m glad they published this news,” Tan Leng Yee, General Manager of Malaysia's Liang Kee Farming Sdn Bhd told Asian Agribiz. Although not many Malaysians are aware of the decision, and it could take some time to create awareness, he said the news will nevertheless help the company in promoting egg consumption. After reviewing scores of studies that showed no correlation between dietary cholesterol and serum cholesterol, or ‘bad’ cholesterol present in the blood, the committee said that cholesterol was not ‘a nutrient of concern for overconsumption’, it wrote in a report.
Fast Food Indonesia eyes 16% growth
[09 March 2015]
Fast Food Indonesia, the operator of KFC, is targeting an income of USD 383 million this year, an increase of 16% from the previous year. For the first quarter the company expects a 7-10% increase, over last year's USD 74.6 million. To achieve this, it will launch new menus. Early this year it launched Red Hot chicken that helped increase its January and February sales by 5%. Director Justinus Dalimin Juwono revealed that KFC will launch a new menu again this March. The other strategy is to setup new outlets. “We are planning for 10-13 new outlets in Q1, in Jakarta, Bandung, Surabaya and other cities in East Java. Each outlet will cost us around USD 308,000,” Mr Justinus said. By the end of this year, the company targets to open 45 new outlets and 20 KFC Box (smaller outlets).
Assessing quality of feed ingredients and finished feeds
[06 March 2015]
Using quality raw materials and having quality finished feeds are essential to ensure profitable and sustainable pig production. At Asian Agribiz's Pig Feed Quality Conference (PigFQC), a session on feed manufacturing will look at practical possibilities to assess the quality of feed ingredients and feed, and improved efficiencies to ensure pigs receive optimum nutrition to give the desired performance. Jon Ratcliff of Food & Agriculture Consultancy Services UK will talk about the latest in-line moisture system & SCADA technology. Steven Goh of Delst Asia will discuss the role of steam conditioning to feed pellet efficiency and feeding value. Ivan Ward of Agri-Torque Pty Ltd will present about the role of NIRS in moisture management in feed, while Marnix De Schryver of Aveve Veevoeding will discuss NIRS as a tool for quality management in feed production. The PigFQC, annually organised by Asian Agribiz, will be held from April 9-10 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. For further details and to register, click here.
High inventory of frozen pork affecting local demand
[06 March 2015]
Frozen imported pork is making its way into wet markets around the Philippines again, bringing down demand for local pork. Edwin Chen, President of the Pork Producers Federation of the Philippines told Asian Agribiz that the inventory of frozen imported pork has gone up following the release of the meat that was held back when the country was experiencing port congestion problems in the latter part of 2014. With the current slow demand, some meat traders are selling the released frozen pork at cheaper prices. However, Mr Chen said handling of these products has been unsanitary, since most wet markets are not equipped to handle frozen meat. Pork producers are calling on the National Meat Inspection Service and administrators of local markets to enforce frozen meat handling rules strictly to ensure that consumers get safe meat.
S khonkaen eyes 15% growth in sales
[06 March 2015]
Thailand's S Khonkaen targets to achieve a sale growth of 15% in 2015 after generating a sales expansion of 11% in 2014. It achieved USD 69.02 million in sales in 2014, with a net profit of 3.43 million, or 21% higher than in 2013. Chief Executive Officer Charoen Rujirasopon revealed that the company will continue to focus on adding value to its processed pork products and promote its fast food chains Zabb Express and Yunnan Pork Leg restaurants. The company will expand its Yunnan Pork Leg outlet to 35 branches in Thailand from 22 at present. It also has two Yunnan Pork Leg outlets in Vientiane, Laos.  S. Khonkaen has also start selling packed frozen Yunnan pork leg in supermarkets.
Consumers unhappy over beef ban
[06 March 2015]
Consumers in Mumbai city, India have voiced their displeasure over the beef ban. Sidharath Sundar, a college professor from Mumbai told Asian Agribiz that the State has no right to intervene in the food habits of the people. “The government cannot dictate what we should eat, it is something personal,” he said. Social activists like M Krishnan also came down heavily against the beef ban saying that it is baseless to declare the sale and consumption of beef as a non-bailable offence. According to him, the beef ban has also shown the Maharashtra government in poor light among the international community.
McDonald’s Indonesia to promote breakfast menu
[06 March 2015]
McDonald’s Indonesia plans to host a National Breakfast Day on March 9, from 6 am to 6 pm. At this event the company will distribute for free, 150,000 Egg McMuffin at its 148 outlets throughout Indonesia, except in Bali and Lombok. Through this event, the company aims to introduce its breakfast menu. Michael Hartono, Marketing & Communication Director, said: “The breakfast menu is a significant profit maker for our business. We have conducted similar events in previous years, and the response from our customers was positive.”
Opposition party in Maharashtra welcomes beef ban
[06 March 2015]
The beef ban imposed in Maharashtra state in India is highly unlikely to be made into a political issue as the main opposition party has welcomed the move. Leader of the opposition Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil said the Indian National Congress welcomes the beef ban. “The bill has been pending for long,” he said. According to him, implementation of this law needs to be totally transparent and the ruling party should not use it as a political tool to gather support.

Global Food Safety Conference, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Food Safety: a Shared Responsibility
[05 March 2015]

Over 900 delegates from 50 countries converged at Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre in Malaysia for GFSI’s Global Food Safety Conference, held for the first time in Asia. The three day event which started on March 3, is set to provide safer food to 7 billion consumers around the world. Under the theme “Food Safety: a Shared Responsibility”, this year’s Program addresses hot topics in the food industry from both global and regional (APAC) angles.

GSFI aims to grow in Asia
The Global Food Safety Initiative (GSFI) wants to expand its work beyond the US, Europe, China and Japan. “It’s a strategic move on our part to bring the event to Kuala Lumpur. Asia is a big market,” Véronique Discours-Buhot, GFSI Director told Asian Agribiz. The GFSI provides leadership and guidance on food safety management systems along the value chain. She said food safety is important even for small and medium-sized food companies in Asia that do not yet have plans to grow internationally. “It is important to let them know how they can build and improve on safety.” GFSI’s Guidance Document, launched in 2001 and available on its website, mygsfi.com, will be releasing its latest version by mid-2015.

Food safety, a shared responsibility
The many demands placed on both producers and retailers have fast changed food chains into food webs, said Cenk Gurol, Vice President AEON Co Ltd of Japan. “With longer value chains from farm to fork, we also see a wider threat of contamination. This drives the need for ‘shared responsibility’ in this growing arena of food safety,” he said.

Cargill pleased with the way it handled blue plastic crisis
Looking back at the blue plastic crisis which unfolded in January Michael Robach, Cargill’s Vice President of Corporate Food Safety, Quality and Regulatory, said he was pleased with the way the company performed. “Our response was appropriate. We were transparent. We conducted analysis at third party labs and cooperated with McDonald’s and the government,” he told Asian Agribiz. Despite announcing within one week that the material did not originate from its plant, he said the crisis offered Cargill the opportunity to improve on crisis communication and its production process.

Megatrends in food safety
Measuring demographic and consumption pattern changes will draw industry players to conclude that it is all happening in Asia. By 2050, per capita food consumption in Asia will grow by 128% said Craige Armitage, Global food safety and Quality Service Leader, PwC, New Zealand. “Seven of the 10 fastest growing economies are in Asia and by 2050, we will see a 72% increase in urban populations that will drive the demand for safe food,” he added.

Asean working towards harmonisation of standards
The 10-member Asean community has until now achieved tariff reductions and is now working towards harmonisation of food safety standards. This will take some time because of the wide gaps in levels of economic maturity of the member nations, commented HE Puspanathan Sundram, Managing Director of EAS Singapore. He added non-tariff barriers are also a concern and this is being addressed in the run-up to the Asean Economic Community at the end of 2015.

Proper farm management key to antibiotics-free fish farms
Confusing regulatory landscape is one reason for the misuse of antibiotics in farming, said Lisa Goche, Vice President, Best Aquaculture Practices Division of the Global Aquaculture Alliance. “Aquaculture is projected to increase by 62% by 2030,” she said adding that a concerted effort is needed to ensure that farmers are trained on the judicious use of antibiotics. Proper farm management and best manufacturing practices are key ways farmers can reduce their dependence on antibiotics. Strict biosecurity controls, proper feeding, close monitoring of water quality and zero or minimal water exchange are some steps farmers take for better farm management.

Beef traders plan to seek legal recourse
[05 March 2015]
Aggrieved over the beef ban imposed in Maharashtra, beef traders in the state plan to seek legal recourse. “The beef ban will affect about 70% of our business and thousands of people connected with the trade will lose their livelihood,” Mohammed Akhtar, a beef trader in Mumbai told Asian Agribiz. According to him, the Mumbai Suburban Beef Traders' Association is likely to approach the court seeking legal recourse as the beef ban is unjustified. Mr Mohammed Akhtar said that the beef ban will severely affect rural economy and prices of other meat will sharply increase.
Effects of beef ban felt in Goa
[05 March 2015]
Two days after the Maharashtra state government in India banned the slaughter of bovine animals except water buffaloes and the sale and consumption of beef, the meat is now in short supply in neighbouring Goa state. Goa Meat Sellers Association spokesperson Anwar Bepari said that this has come at a time when the only slaughter house in Goa is non-operational due to renovation. “Beef ban in Maharashtra state will only make things worse. Beef sellers across the state are expected to meet to discuss the shortage issue.
Thailand’s Egg Board to meet on low price issue
[05 March 2015]
Thailand’s National Egg Board will meet on March 10 to consider measures to tackle the current low price issue. Farm gate price of mixed grade hen egg is at around THB 2.20 per egg (USD 0.068) at present, lower than production cost of THB 2.90/egg (USD 0.090). Many small farms even offer lower price than the average as to clear their supply. AT an earlier meeting with the Department of Livestock Development, layer farmer representatives agreed on proposed solutions such as reduction of PS to not exceed 500,000 birds from around 699,000 in 2014, exports of surplus by large egg producers by 3 million eggs per month, earlier removal of spent hens (at age 70 weeks), exports of extra PS and stocking of surplus eggs in cold store. All the proposed measures are expected to be carefully considered at the upcoming Egg Board meeting.
Indonesia still the biggest Australian cattle importer
[05 March 2015]
Indonesia is still the biggest importer of live cattle from Australia, with a 63% increase in imports recorded in 2014. According to Meat and Livestock Australia export data, Indonesia had in 2014 imported 730,257 live cattle from Australia. The strong demand has become the main driver of growth for Australia’s live cattle exports, which has increased by 33% in 2014, amounting to 1.29 million live cattle exported. Meanwhile in 2014, Indonesia’s position as the biggest importer is far above Vietnam, the second biggest importer of live cattle from Australia. In 2014, Vietnam imported 181,542 live cattle from Australia.
Costs bear upon smaller feedmillers
[04 March 2015]
Rising costs of and difficult access to raw materials are working against small and medium-scale commercial feedmillers as well as home-mixers in the Philippines. Miriam Alberto-Tempra, Vice-President of the Philippine Association of Animal Nutritionists, told Asian Agribiz that there is a growing number of commercial feed manufacturers in the country, many of whom are big operations. She said that while costs of some ingredients like soy and amino acids have softened, many smaller feed manufacturers, producing between 5000-20,000 bags/month, are still feeling the pinch and finding it difficult to compete with bigger commercial feedmillers. “The bigger feedmills can import raw materials tariff-free, so they are able to sell their feed cheaper,” commented Dr Tempra.
GSI to open office, plant, warehouse in Indonesia
[04 March 2015]
GSI Asia, a subsidiary of AGCO Corp providing grain systems and structure, poultry and swine solutions, plans to set up an office, assembling plant and warehouse in Tangerang, Indonesia. Khenddro Low, Marketing Manager, told Asian Agribiz that the facilities are targeted for operation at the end of this year. The existence of the plant will make the prices of GSI’s products more competitive. The plant will assemble products like feeding, watering and nesting systems and also plastic slats. The warehouse, meanwhile, will strengthen the company’s services to customers in the country. “Our business in Indonesia continues to grow positively. This year we expect our business in Indonesia to grow at least 7-8%,” Mr Low said.
Beef trade come to a halt in Maharashtra
[04 March 2015] 
Indian President Pranab Mukherjee has signed the Maharashtra Animal Preservation (Amendment) Bill, 1995 which ban the slaughter of bulls as well as bullocks. The slaughter of cows was previously prohibited in the state under the Maharashtra Animal Preservation Act of 1976, reported the Indian Express.  Beef traders claim the move will not only render thousands jobless, but will also drive up the cost of other meats in the state. Anyone found to be selling beef or in possession of it can be jailed for five years and fined USD 160.
H9N2 infection in pigs and farmers in China
[04 March 2015]
Low rates of antibodies to H9N2 avian flu were found in pigs and workers at pig farms in Shandong province in eastern China. Chinese researchers were said to have collected 2,176 pig samples from 50 swine farms on which pigs had contact with wild birds, and they also collected blood samples from 287 workers on the farms and from 100 healthy controls in the province. Antibody titers of 40 or higher were considered seropositive for H7N9.By hemagglutination inhibition (HI) assay, 4.9% of the pigs were seropositive, compared with 3.9% by microneutralization (MN) assay. In the farm workers, 2.1% were positive via HI assay and 1.4% by MN assay. No H9N2 cases in the pigs and workers were detected, which indicates that asymptomatic infections likely exist, the authors noted.
Beef prices in Indonesia skyrocketing
[04 March 2015]
The reduction of import permits for live cattle and the ban on importing secondary beef cuts and offal could prove disastrous. The price of beef across Indonesia’s traditional and modern markets is on the rise, surging to USD 11.54/kg in many regions. The Indonesian Beef Cattle Feedlotters Association is lobbying the government to issue 250,000 import permits for Australian cattle in Q2 and to allocate the permits as soon as possible, so cattle can get into the feedlotting system and be ready for Ramadhan, which starts on June 18. Thomas Sembiring, Chairman of the Indonesian Meat Importers Association, said the price of beef could reach beyond USD 11.54/kg, if nothing is done. “The government has calculated that most of the secondary cuts of beef could be supplied locally, but I doubt it. It’s still debatable if there’ll be enough beef for Ramadhan.”
Brahim’s shareholders squash decision to buy Burger King
[04 March 2015]
Brahim’s Holdings Bhd has aborted plans to acquire the Burger King business in Malaysia and Singapore after its shareholders voted against the decision at an EGM. “The deal was rejected by more than 90% of shareholders by a show of hands,” said Brahim’s Executive Chairman Datuk Ibrahim Ahmad Badawi after the meeting. Shareholders were concerned that the Burger King business was loss-making but he added that Brahim’s had plans to turn it around in two years. Last November, Brahim’s announced its plan to acquire Burger King for USD 26.34 million and was to jointly carry out the purchase with businessman Datuk Ahmad Zaki Zahid in an 80:20 joint venture. An industry source said there was scepticism about the company's ability to raise funds for the acquisition.
Lay Hong reports 500% increase in earnings for 3Q
[03 March 2015]
Lay Hong Bhd, the Malaysian poultry company that was a takeover target by QL Resources Bhd last year, reported a 500% increase in its earnings for the third quarter ended December 31, 2014. The company’s net profit rose 500% to USD 1.75 million, a sharp improvement from USD 0.29 million a year ago. Its revenue increased 21.3% to USD 49.10 million. Its integrated livestock farming segment revenue increased 24.12% on higher productivity and poultry product prices. “Chicken and egg prices have remained stable for the past nine months and is projected to remain at this level for the remaining three months of the financial year. Raw material prices are expected to remain stable due to adequate supply of corn and soybean. Given this outlook, the group will continue to perform satisfactorily in the remaining quarter,” it said in a filing to Bursa Malaysia.
Call for Vietnam to step up beef cattle farming
[03 March 2015]
Vietnam should convert ineffective rice cultivation areas into grass fields for raising beef cattle, Le Ba Lich, Vietnam Animal Feed Association Chairman said. He said Vietnam imports about 200,000 head of cattle every year. There are only 45,000 ha of grass across the nation at present which is only able to feed 45,000 cattle, he added. Nguyen Dang Vang, Animal Livestock Association Chairman, said about 70 million tonnes of agricultural by-products like straw, bagasse, and corn stalk, which can be turned into animal feed, are produced annually. If each kg of beef needs 6-7 kg of fodder, the country can produce one million tonnes of beef using only 20 million tonnes of by-products.
Pig processing unit starts operation in Nepal
[03 March 2015]
A pig processing unit, promoted by Fresh Hygienic Food Agro and Animal Farming has started operations in Banke district, Nepal. The USD 100,885 processing plant will supply 400kg meat/day to Kathmandu valley. “We have signed an agreement to purchase pigs from around 300 farmers of mid and far western regions,” Dipendra Kumar Joshi, Managing Director of the company said. According to him, the processing unit purchases pigs at around USD 2/kg and since a competitive price is offered, farmers need not search for other markets.

Sneak peek at Asian Poultry Magazine, March 2015
[03 March 2015]

Asia strengthens effort on disease control and food safety
The spread of several avian influenza virus strains in many Asian countries has put pressure on the poultry industry. The AI outbreaks have encouraged increased biosecurity while other diseases and food safety issues continue to pose challenges to the poultry sector in this region. NITSARA THONGRUNG and the ASIAN AGRIBIZ team offer an update and review resolutions as well as recommendations to sustain growth.

Kaona Poultry invests in technology
Kaona Poultry Co Ltd in Thailand is investing in technology, primarily to ensure the quality of its products. NITSARA THONGRUNG writes this will also improve work efficiency and offer a higher degree of traceability.

Aviagen India sees potential for export
Ever since Aviagen established its presence in South India in 2007, the company has grown and is now able to service the central and northern regions as well with its products. Paul Gittins tells S M ARUN that the potential for export is good and how important India is to Aviagen’s global strategic plan.

Strong foundation helps Phi Long progress
Getting the basics right -- such as quality feed, clean water and keeping the birds comfortable – has helped Vietnamese farmer Phi Long grow gradually and reap success from his farm. After opening a primary processing plant in December 2013, he now wants to open a further processing plant, RACHAEL PHILIP learns.

Biocatalysis – improves nutrient digestion
Clays are well-recognised for their layered structure and surface properties, making them able to bind polar mycotoxins. However, VIRGIL MEALLET explains that a unique combination of clay and seaweeds boosts enzyme activity through the action of biocatalysis, improving feed efficiency.

Mycotoxins – impact on infectious diseases
The incidence of mycotoxin contamination of feed is likely to increase with the increasing use of DDGS, which are particularly susceptible to this problem writes RADKA BORUTOVA. Mycotoxins can cause immunosuppression, increasing the risk of infectious diseases and reducing the effectiveness of vaccination programs.

The use of probiotics to reduce reproductive tract pathologies in free-range laying hens
Manipulation of bacterial communities by administration of probiotics can reduce the occurrence of reproductive tract pathologies and improve the health and performance of free-range chickens reports WAEL ABDELRAHMAN.

Making the most of feed ingredients
[02 March 2015]
With feed accounting for the bulk of cost in pig production, pig producers have turned to alternative ingredients to meet nutritional requirements while reducing cost. At the Asian Agribiz Pig Feed Quality Conference to be held from April 9-10 at the New World Saigon Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City, Timothy Low, Regional Director (SE Asia) of the US Soybean Export Council will give participants an update on feed commodities. Dr Nattawut Rattanawanichroj, Assistant Professor, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of Kasetsart University will discuss the use local ingredients. Dr Megan Edwards of A.C.E Livestock Consulting Pty Ltd will also give an overview on and the potential uses of legumes and canola in pig nutrition. The conference is widely recognised as one of Asia’s premier scientific forums for industry professionals to update their knowledge on pig nutrition. More details and register here.
Beef traders to go on nationwide strike if harassment continues
[02 March 2015]
Beef traders in Mumbai, India have decided to launch a nationwide strike if harassment by Hindu religious outfits continues in the state, said President of the Bombay Suburban Beef Dealers Association Mohammed Ali Qureshi. Beef processing has resumed at many facilities in Mumbai and the situation has eased now. Ashakir Akbar, a beef trader in Mumbai said that the beef traders’ strike in Mumbai last week had affected prices of almost all meat items. “If we call a nationwide strike the impact will be huge and even the export business will be affected,” Mr Ashakir Akbar told Asian Agribiz.
MPEDA set to achieve USD6b export revenue
[02 March 2015]
The Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA) in India is confident of achieving USD 6 billion in export revenue during the 2014-15 financial year. Exports by the Central Government owned agency has already crossed USD 5 billion by January this year. N Ramesh, Director (Marketing) of MPEDA said recently that seafood exports were registering close to 20% rise annually. Major customers of MPEDA that import shrimp, fish and squid are USA, Southeast Asia, European Union and Japan.

Reports from the Indonesian Poultry Club, Jakarta
[02 March 2015]

Indonesian poultry needs grand design
The oversupply of broiler DOC and live birds in 2014 which had generated losses of more than USD 544 million in the industry and last year’s chicken consumption that did not meet the target resulted from the absence of a grand design, according to Professor Muladno from the Faculty of Animal Science, Bogor Agricultural University. “The idea to create a grand design has been discussed many times, but no real action was taken.” The grand design of Indonesian poultry industry for the next 25 years has to be formulated as soon as possible. “And then who will do what, what are the targets and when are the deadlines should be clear,” he added.
Chicken will be basic commodity
Indonesia’s Ministry of Trade has prepared a regulation about chicken trade which will soon be discussed at the government level. Robert James Bintaryo, Director for Basic Commodities and Strategic Goods, said that in the regulation the government will make chicken one of the basic commodities in the country. In addition, there will be floor and ceiling prices for live birds, chicken and DOC. According to Mr Robert, this effort was taken to stabilise the price and prevent oversupply.

GPPU to check incubator capacity
The Indonesian Poultry Breeders Association (GPPU) plans to check the capacity at all hatchery facilities of its members this year. This follows the oversupply situation of broiler DOC in 2014 that led to severe losses. Krissantono, GPPU Chairman, said the checks are aimed at getting more valid data regarding the production numbers of broiler DOC. “With more valid data, over estimation of production can be prevented,” he said.

Exporting countries have to follow Indonesia’s halal rules
Responding efforts by Brazil and the US to export chicken to Indonesia, poultry associations in Indonesia realise that this is the consequence of free trade. An industry player told Asian Agribiz: “We are open to imports but the exporters have to follow rules in Indonesia.” Most important is that the products should be halal as 90% of Indonesia’s population is Muslim. He explained that the halal concept in Indonesia is different from countries in the UEA. He said that the slaughter procedure, the facility and the production processes should be certified by the Indonesian Ulama Council.

Beef trade disrupted in Mumbai
[27 February 2015]
India's beef trade has been disrupted in Mumbai city as members of some Hindu religious outfits resorted to violence by confiscating the animals meant for slaughter from the beef traders. “We are into beef trading only after obtaining appropriate licences and permission but yet we are harassed by Hindu religious outfits as they are against this trade,” Ismail Ravuthar, a beef trader in Mumbai told Asian Agribiz. Following complaints from beef traders, Chief Minister of Maharashtra state Devendra Fadnavis has assured protection to beef traders in Mumbai who have been on strike for the past few days.
Asean a strategic region for food safety
[27 February 2015]
The Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) will stage its flagship food safety event in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from March 3-5, after 13 successful editions in Europe and North America. Asean is a strategic region for food safety and GFSI hopes to communicate its objectives to a wider audience and engage them in its work through this event, which enables delegates to take the GFSI approach home with them and translate it into improved food safety in their business. Asian Agribiz is a media sponsor of the event.
Rivals threaten Vietnam’s top pangasius exporter spot
[27 February 2015]
Vietnam could lose its pangasius export market share to other Asian nations, the VietNamNet Bridge reported. Competition from the Philippines and Indonesia is an emerging threat to Vietnam’s pangasius export industry, which has already been having to lower export prices to attract customers even as it faces unhealthy competition locally. Vietnam already competes with India, Thailand, Cambodia and Laos. Jamaica has also begun developing pangasius aquaculture, and Puerto Rico is considering the same. Future rivals could threaten Vietnam’s eminence as the globe’s biggest pangasius exporter unless the nation develops an effective development strategy, said Le Thanh Thuan, Chairman of Sao Mai Seafood Group, the news outlet reported.

Sneak peek into Asian Pork Magazine, March 2015
[27 February 2015]

Expansion, upgrades in store for industry
In the run up to the Asean Economic Community (AEC), pork industries in the region continue to prepare themselves for new opportunities and intense competition. Meanwhile, opportunities abound in China, where local supply is likely to fall below the market requirements. The ASIAN-AGRIBIZ team looks at the developments in these areas and what can be expected this year.

Bioceleng Farm eyes niche premium market
With a good quality ration and farming management that follows animal welfare practices, Bioceleng Farm is trying to produce quality pork for the premium market segment, writes ARIEF FACHRUDIN.

Hok Hieng stands out on cost effective farming
Thai-made western-style sausages are taking over supermarket shelves in Cambodia. They are known for their good price and quality products. Cambodian swine producer Hok Hieng too wants to focus on making good sausages. It starts on his farm with cost effective farming, General Manager Chan Sothea tells RACHAEL PHILIP.

Urinary Tract Infections in sows
Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) are common bacterial infections in gestating sows, however, they are often underestimated, as with the majority of UTIs clinical signs are absent. AMICIE de QUATREBARBES and TEE CHIOU YAN report the results of a three farm survey in Malaysia that assessed the prevalence of UTIs, determined the causative agents and possible impacts on health status and performance.

Revisiting methionine in pig production
YVES MERCIER discusses the impact of better management of methionine supply, both level and source at specific growth stages for pigs.

A novel solution to tackle zearalenone
Mycotoxins are important contributors to economic losses in pig production, especially zearalenone as it has a negative impact on sow reproductive performance. The use of so-called mycotoxin binders has become a routine practice, as they prevent intestinal absorption of the toxins. This has led to the introduction of many different products on the market. However, they are not all equally effective and efficacy of many of them has not or inadequately been proven. Elke Schoeters and Koh Thong Jin describe a new and proven innovation in mycotoxin binders.

Beef prices in Indonesia skyrocketing after import ban
[26 February 2015]
Indonesia’s ban on imports of secondary (beef) meat and offal has caused the price of beef in traditional and modern markets to rise. Thomas Sembiring, Chairman of the Indonesian Meat Importers Association, said the price of beef has escalated to USD 7.86/kg, and could go up to USD 11.79/kg. “This confirms that the government’s calculation on local beef supply is not accurate. Local beef supply is limited and cannot meet the increasing demand,” he said, adding that the government should lift the ban immediately. Syukur Iwantoro, Director General of Livestock and Animal Health of the Ministry of Agriculture, however pointed out that the problem is because the meat importers don’t want to buy local beef. “We have asked the Minister of Trade to issue a regulation that requires meat importers to buy local beef.”
Vietnam exports USD 115m worth of pangasius to Mexico
[26 February 2015]
Vietnam’s export of pangasius to Mexico increased 17% last year to reach a value of USD 115.24 million, said the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers. The country is the fifth top importing market for Vietnamese pangasius. Frozen fillet exports to Mexico reported positive growth. Although averaging around USD 2.10/kg, prices were not higher than in 2013. Of frozen whitefish fillets, pangasius was the most imported item, followed by tilapia and Alaska pollock. The price of pangasius was relatively lower than tilapia. In terms of value, the EU held a 19.5% share of Vietnam’s pangasius exporting market, followed by the US (19%), Asean (7.7%) and Brazil (7%).
Worsening Brazil-Indon ties may affect meat sector
[26 February 2015]
Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has refused to accept the Indonesian ambassador-designate to Brazil Toto Riyanto’s credentials in apparent anger at the execution of a Brazilian drug convict in Central Java last month. This situation will aggravate the bilateral ties between the two countries. For Brazil, Indonesia is an important meat importer and Brazil is trying to export meat, especially chicken, to Indonesia. A poultry industry player told Asian Agribiz that if the diplomatic relations between the two countries worsens, this will affect trade relations, “even the joint venture between Brazil’s BRF and Indonesia’s Indofood may be reviewed.”
China scraps Irish BSE-related ban
[26 February 2015]
Irish beef has been approved for export to China once again following the withdrawal of its BSE-related ban. The access will cover boneless beef from animals under 30 months of age. Simon Coveney, Irish Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, welcomed the move. He said the overall Chinese beef opportunity was currently estimated at approximately six million tonnes and was expected to grow by a further one million tonnes over the next five years, driven by increasing affluence and the popularity of Western-style diets. “There is potential not only for beef offal, but increasingly for high-quality steak cuts and for traceable manufacturing beef for the expanding fast food sector,” he said.
Taiwan relaxes by-product ban from US, Canada
[26 February 2015]
Taiwan is easing its 11-year-old import ban on offal and by-product sources from US and Canada-reared cattle over bovine spongiform encephalopathy concerns by re-classifying six types of beef by-products as ‘non-internal organs’. This clears the way for their import. The Taiwan Food and Drug Administration’s (TFDA) clarified that bone marrow, blood vessels, head meat, cheek meat, weasand and tallow were not banned. “This is a clarification only and not a lifting of our restrictions against US beef,” Pan Jhy-quan, Director of the TFDA Food Safety Division, told GlobalMeatNews. “The BSE-related ban against internal organs will continue and we are now simply pointing out that these six types may be imported,” he added.
Global sheep meat production rising
[26 February 2015]
Global sheep meat production has been rising over the last three to four years having seen a gradual slide since 2007. Almost half of global production is found in Asia, Stuart Ashworth, Quality Meat Scotland’s head of economic services told the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board Outlook 2015 conference in London recently. Meanwhile Ben Thomas, Meat and Livestock Australia’s Manager of Market Information, said Australia’s domestic lamb supply may remain stretched due to growing demand from China, Japan and Southeast Asia. Increasing wealth in developing markets and improved market access, particularly in China may cause local lamb supply to come under pressure, he said.
Apfindo proposes import of 250,000 cattle for Q2
[25 February 2015]
Indonesia’s Beef Cattle Feedlotters Association (Apfindo) has proposed a feeder cattle import permit of 250,000 heads for this year’s second quarter to the government. Johny Liano, Apfindo Executive Director, said current stocks will not meet demand until July. “We have asked the government to give the permit as soon as possible, at the latest in mid-March, since the lot feeding process takes about 2-3 months.” In the first quarter, the government released an import permit for 100,000 heads of feeder cattle. This could only meet demand in Jabodetabek and North Sumatera. Demand in other regions, was met by local supply.
No let-up in China's H7N9 cases
[25 February 2015]
Seven more human H7N9 avian influenza cases were reported in mainland China and Hong Kong on February 22 according to updates from Hong Kong's Centre for Health Protection (CHP) and media reports. A CHP press release as well as an article in the South China Morning Post said some experts are concerned that H3N2, the seasonal flu virus now circulating in China, could mix with the H7N9 virus and mutate. "The worst outcome could lead to human-to human transmission," said Dr Ho Pak-leung, a microbiologist at the University of Hong Kong.
Indonesia’s GGL to integrate its cattle business
[25 February 2015]
Great Giant Livestock (GGL), a subsidiary of Indonesia's Gunung Sewu Group plans to integrate its business. Last year the company set up a cattle breeding farm in Lampung with a capacity of 1000 heads. The breeding stock consists of local and Brahman cross breeds. Last year also, the company bought a cattle station in the Northern Territory of Australia. At the moment its feedlot in Lampung has a capacity of 100,000 heads. This feedlot utilise pineapple and tapioca waste derived from other Gunung Sewu’s subsidiaries. Dayu Ariasintawati, Director of GGL, revealed to Asian Agribiz that in the next two or three years the company plans to set up a cattle slaughterhouse in Lampung with a capacity of 50-200 heads/day.
Itoham aims to up stake in ANZCO Foods
[25 February 2015]
Japanese food company Itoham Foods Inc said it will increase its stake in ANZCO Foods Limited from 48.3% to 65% if its purchase offer is accepted by other leading shareholders and is approved by the Overseas Investment Office. Itoham, with Mitsubishi Corp as its largest shareholder, revealed plans to grow its business outside Japan by becoming “the most trusted manufacturer of processed meat in Asia”. Mitsubishi Corp has one of the world’s most extensive business networks with more than 200 offices in 90 countries. Food sales fall under the umbrella of Mitsubishi Corp’s Living Essentials Group, with over 28,000 employees and a strong focus on emerging markets, particularly in Asia, and especially China, Indonesia and India.
Poultry industry urges tax-free imports of machinery
[25 February 2015]
Pakistan’s poultry industry has called for tax-free imports of machinery and loans, similar to that extended to the textile industry by the government. In a statement, former Chairman of Pakistan Poultry Association Abdul Basit said if the poultry industry is accorded this, it could target a major share of USD 3 trillion halal food trade globally. He added that the government should allow loans at a 2% mark-up for the poultry industry to enable it to produce more for export.
Animal feed testing market to reach USD1354m
[25 February 2015]
The global market for animal feed testing is expected to grow at a CAGR of 6.8% from USD 845.4 million in 2013 to USD 1354.1 million by 2020. Mycotoxin testing comprises the largest share in the market, followed by microbiology analysis, vitamin and heavy metal analysis, amino acids and pigment analysis. The Asia Pacific market for animal feed testing is expected to grow owing to its high demand for quality and sustainable animal nutrition products.
Aussie retailer eyes Asian meat market
[25 February 2015]
Brett Blundy, a leading Australian retailer, is eyeing the Asian meat market after diversifying into beef cattle breeding in 2010. He is targeting Asia’s growing economies such as China, Indonesia and Vietnam, leveraging Australia’s proximity to the region. In a strategic move, Mr Blundy has been buying stakes in many Northern Territory cattle stations. Sounding upbeat on the new diversification into beef exports, Mr Blundy said: “I think the world and Australia is waking up to the value of having Asia so close to us and that’s a huge advantage. That will drive the north to much greater heights, so I think it’s a good place to be.”
Menara inaugurates new feedmill
[24 February 2015]
Indonesia’s Menara Feedmill began operations at its new feedmill in Tulungagung, East Java early this year. This new plant has one extruder and one pelletiser to produce fish and quail and commercial broiler feeds. However, in the near future this plant will also produce commercial layer feed to cater to local demand. Costing around USD 2.3 million, the new plant has increased the company’s installed capacity by 10,000 tonnes/month. The company expects this to increase its business growth this year by 30%. “We expect this new plant to run at full capacity within the next two years,” Director Henry Haryono told Asian Agribiz. Along with the new plant, the company also set up a new warehouse to store main raw materials like soybean, soybean meal, corn and rice bran.
Myanmar receives first batch of beef, pork from US
[24 February 2015]
Myanmar received its first consignment of beef and pork from US Agri Beef Co, based in Boise, Idaho. The company recently airfreighted roughly 230kg of ribeye, strip loin, tenderloin, beef cheek meat, pork loin and bacon. “With our established presence in Southeast Asia, we continue to see consumer demand for quality beef and pork products increase throughout that region,” said Jay Theiler, Agri Beef’s Executive Director of Marketing. Agri Beef's relationship with Myanmar developed from an April 2014 meeting with a distributor attending a trade show in Singapore. The growing middle class in Myanmar is driving demand for high-quality meat products. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development noted the middle-class purchasing power in Asia is projected to increase by USD 25 trillion by 2030.
Tohpati Poultry re-enters chicken processing business
[24 February 2015]
Indonesia’s Tohpati Poultry, one of the oldest and largest poultry companies in Bali, plans to re-enter the chicken slaughterhouse business this year, and after that venture into further processing. The company is currently involved in commercial broiler farming, broiler contract farming and as a poultry production inputs agent. “We want to have an integrated poultry business from upstream to downstream again,” Komang Tangkas Perwira Negara, Chief Accounting Officer, told Asian Agribiz. “We will start the reintegration process starting from chicken slaughterhouse,” said Mr Komang, adding that the company will reactivate its stalled 5000 bird/day slaughterhouse. The target markets are the Horeca industry, including QSR chains, and supermarkets.
Research advocates pork revolution in India
[24 February 2015]
A research done by Eknath Chakurkar, Principal Scientist of the Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR) has advocated the need for a pork revolution in India as it could be a one-shot solution for protein needs and to generate revenue and foreign exchange in India. According to Dr Eknath Chakurkar, eating pork could be a cheap protein fix for Indians and cultivation of rapidly multiplying pigs will boost income for rural farmers as well as increase exports. “Adopting scientific and modern techniques for pig-rearing will help supplement the income of rural Indian farmers, who are now using old and traditional methods," he concluded in his research.

Asian Agribiz Regional Dairy Update
[24 February 2015]

Amul to set up processing plant in West Bengal
Indian dairy products giant Amul will set up dairy processing unit in West Bengal state in India. R S Sodhi, Managing Director of Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation, the makers of Amul dairy products said recently in Kolkata that they will be investing USD 40 million to set up the new processing plant. “Once operational it will be the biggest dairy processing plant in West Bengal and the plant will serve Kolkata and its vicinity with fresh milk produce,” Mr Sodhi said. The plant will have the capacity to process one million litres of milk per day, expandable up to 1.5 million litres per day and other dairy products.

Online sales of imported milk in China growing
Imported milk products are rapidly increasing their share in the Chinese market due to their low prices, posing a threat to domestic middle and high-end milk products, Shanghai’s China Business News reported. E-commerce has become a major distribution channel for imported milk products. The latest data published end January revealed that approximately two-thirds of milk products sold through the e-commerce channel was imported. In 2014, 310,000 tonnes of milk sold online, a 72% increase compared with 180,000 tonnes in 2013. Online milk sales, however, are only a small portion of total milk sales of 10 million tonnes.

Australian delegation explores collaboration in India
A 25-member dairy delegation, which is part of the Australian business delegation that visited the Dudhsagar Dairy in Gujarat, India. The delegation was looking for opportunities for tie-ups in the Indian dairy sector, especially in areas of dairy breeds, genetics and better productivity. Mark Morley, Trade Commissioner and leader of the delegation said that a similar delegation comprising officials and farmers from India would also visit Australia.

Leading China beef, feed producers in dairy JV
One of China’s largest beef and mutton producers has joined one of its largest feed companies to create a new dairy development, marketing and sales company. Fortune Ng Fung, the beef company, will hold 35% of the new venture, with New Hope holding 40% and a management team holding the remaining 25%. The new company will operate in the booming urban triangle made up of Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei Province, which surrounds both cities. Fortune Ng Fung has recently restructured its dairy operation in Hebei Province, while New Hope has previously invested in a big dairy operation in Sichuan Province, in south-western China.

China imports first batch of heifers from Chile
China has received more than 7000 heifers from Chile. The focus of this initial China bound shipment of livestock has been on dairy cattle but there has also been “interest in exporting beef cattle to China,” said Andres Duval, Regional Head of Agricultural and Livestock Service. According to GlobalMeatNews, the animals are expected to be the first batch out of a total of 20,000 head of cattle which will make the trip over the next year as authorities in Beijing seek to boost its beef and milk production capacity. China’s decision to certify Chile as one of a handful of countries from which it can import live cattle reflects the efforts made to improve genetic quality of the country’s herds and sanitary standards in the farming sector, said Mr Duval.

Amul to hike milk prices if feed prices rise
Indian dairy products giant Amul is expected to increase milk prices if the price of feed increases. Speaking at the All India Management Association meeting in New Delhi, Managing Director R S Sodhi said they would review the price situation during the monsoon season depending on feed and other costs. “The price increase is not required currently as cost of milk production is under control in view of stable feed prices and lower energy and transportation costs,” he said. Mr Sodhi also pointed out that the last price increase happened in May 2014 and added that whenever Amul increased prices it was minimal.

Indonesia’s GGL to promote chilled beef
[23 February 2015]
Great Giant Livestock (GGL), a subsidiary of Indonesia’s Gunung Sewu Group, has launched beef products under the brand Bonanza Beef. Dayu Ariasintawati, Director of GGL, told Asian Agribiz that the beef market in Indonesia is dominated by fresh beef sold in traditional markets. While imported frozen beef is sold in supermarkets and the Horeca sector. “We see that there is market potential for chilled beef. Response from the market, especially from the Horeca segment, has been good. They find chilled beef is of good quality and there is no need for thawing,” Ms Dayu explained.
Thai KFC denies hunting down fried chicken copycats
[23 February 2015]
The owners of the KFC franchise in Thailand has denied that it had dispatched representatives to arrest fried chicken street vendors in Rayong. Yum Restaurants International (Thailand) told Manager Online that it had nothing to do with the arrests. On February 13, about 100 vendors from a market rallied at the Rayong provincial hall, saying that a group of men who claimed to be police and representatives of Yum arrested vendors alleging that they violated the KFC copyright although they did not have any signs related to KFC. Yum Restaurants has ordered its legal division to take proper actions and will also issue a press statement to clarify the incident to the public, the source said.
CP Prima allocates USD31m for new plants
[23 February 2015]
Central Proteinaprima or more popularly known as CP Prima has allocated USD 31 million for this year’s capital expenditure to set up a new aqua feedmill and a further processing plant in East Java, Indonesia. George Basuki, Corporate Communications Head, said the new aqua feed plant will have an annual capacity of 40,000 tonnes and is targeted for operations by the end of this year. On the further processing plant, Mr George said the project is still under study, “but we are certain of producing further processed shrimp products." According to Indo Premier Securities Analyst, Robby Has, with the new feedmill, the company's market share will continue to increase from its current 50%. He added that shrimp-based processed food is has a profit margin of around 25%.”
Thai shrimp packers join Vietnam in looking to India
[23 February 2015]
Shrimp raw material prices in Thailand are rising amid short supply causing at least one large packer to turn to India for products, sources told Undercurrent News. This adds to the trend of Vietnamese packers buying from India, as both Thailand and Vietnam look to recover their own production after the spread of early mortality syndrome. Unlike Vietnam, the Thai government has a lengthy inspection process for imported shrimp. Last year, Thailand’s production dived to 200,000 tonnes, having been as high as 650,000 tonnes in the past. Although production is expected to pick up this year, it is currently the off season for farmers and prices were high, making imports viable.
China receives first shipment of pork from Hungary
[23 February 2015]
Hungary has become the latest country with import access to China’s meat market.  China received its first shipment of 25.68 tonnes of frozen pork knuckles at the Tianjin port recently. This comes after Hungarian Minister for Agriculture Sandor Fazekas signed a protocol with Zzhi Shuping, head of the General Administration of Quality, Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, which licences imports. According to GlobalMeatNews, Hungary is also keen to ship beef and milk to China. The imports from Hungary may be timely given China has stopped pork imports from its main Eastern European pork suppliers.
SS Group to set up poultry feed project
[23 February 2015]
Pakistan's SS Group in collaboration with Muyang Holdings of China will establish a fully automated poultry feed production unit, the group announced recently. The plant, will be the first automated plant of its kind in Pakistan. Chief Executive Officer of SS Group Shahzad Ali Khan said the project will be established on a turnkey basis with an initial cost of around USD 5 million in the first phase. “This is an equity-based project and is in line with the prime minister’s tax exemption scheme for 100% equity-based projects,” he said. Once completed the project is expected to help support and develop the rural economy.
AsiaPac is the largest animal feed vitamins market
[23 February 2015]
The global vitamin market is estimated to cross USD 1 billion by 2020 growing at a CAGR of 1.8%. Vitamins is the fastest growing segment, and vitamin E and B are the most consumed types. Asia Pacific is the largest market for animal feed vitamins market owing to the heavy livestock population and poultry feed is the largest segment for the vitamin market. It is also the fastest growing region in the market mainly due to increased demand for quality meat and increased mass production of meat.

Preview of Asian Agribiz 2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference
April 9-10, Ho Chi Minh City
[18 February 2015]

Widely recognised as one of Asia's premier scientific forums for industry professionals to update their knowledge on pig production, the Asian Agribiz 2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference brings the latest research and provides useful information for Asian pig and feed producers.

Porcine bone health
Dr Thau Kiong Chung, DSM will discuss the results of trials in several countries show that supplementing the diets of growing gilts with 25-hydroxy-cholecalciferol leads to a higher proportion of females being selected as breeding replacements. This is because more gilts meet body conformation selection standards, resulting from improved conformation and locomotive characteristics likely attributed to lowered osteochondrosis development.  Moreover, this increases the number of replacements available so that herd genetic potential is continually improved.
Breeding sows benefit from NSP-degrading enzymes
During the days before and after farrowing, sows show low appetite with reduced feed intake, which can impair the reproductive cycle.  Dr Kevin Liu, Adisseo will present a meta-analysis of six recent trials which showed that the addition of NSP-degrading enzymes increased voluntary feed intake, significantly reduced weight loss of 3 kg on average or 20%, and back-fat loss by 24% during lactation. 
ß-galactomannan - effective prevention and control
Dietary mannans/galactomannans occurring in widely used feedstuffs have the structures with the potential to be recognised by immune cells when these ingested molecules penetrate the epithelial layer of the intestinal barrier to trigger excessive immune responses.  Dr Humg-Yu Hsiao, BioSolutions International will summarise five trials which provide good support that ß-galactomannan in legume seeds is an immunogen and supplementing ß-mannanase in ß-galactomannan containing feed can effectively reverse its negative impacts on animal production.
Role of creatine on growth performance and meat quality of pigs
Dr Eloisa Carpena, Evonik will present that dietary supplementation of creatine may contribute to the improvement of growth performance, like weight gain and feed efficiency of pigs.  Moreover, creatine supplementation may be used to improve meat quality parameters like drip loss, post mortem pH and visual colour.  However, creatine as a feed additive has some downsides because it is expensive and it is not thermostable, therefore it cannot withstand feed manufacturing process such as pelleting.  An innovative form of guanidinoacetic acid (GAA) which is the only precursor of creatine can be a more suitable dietary source of creatine for pigs and poultry.

For more information and to register click here

Indonesia’s GGL promotes beef products
[18 February 2015] 
Great Giant Livestock (GGL), a subsidiary of Indonesia’s Gunung Sewu Group, is promoting beef products under the brand Bonanza Beef. Speaking to Asian Agribiz at the Jakarta Food Security Summit 2015, Dayu Ariasintawati, Director of GGL, said that previously the company only sold finisher beef cattle to slaughter men. “This year we want to add value to our production chain which is in line with our group’s vision for sustainable businesses from green synergies and zero waste.” Ms Dayu said Bonanza Beef is unique since the cattle are fed with pineapple waste and this makes the meat tender. “The cattle are slaughtered at an Elders’ slaughterhouse that maintains good food safety, hygiene and animal welfare standards.”
More H7N9 infections in China
[18 February 2015]
Health officials in China's Guangdong province have reported another H7N9 infection, which struck a 45-year-old man from Meizhou. Though several Chinese provinces have reported H7N9 cases this winter, Guangdong has been especially hard hit. The province has reported 50 cases so far, the Xinhua newspaper reported. It said 12 deaths have been reported and thousands of chickens have been culled and live-poultry trade has been curbed in several cities. Meanwhile, the highly pathogenic H5N1 avian flu virus recently infected eight tigers at a zoo in southern China, killing two of them, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization.
Chick Hous opens first outlet in Jakarta
[18 February 2015]
Indonesia’s Chick Hous has inaugurated its first convenience poultry meat outlet in Pluit, Jakarta. The outlet sells different kinds of poultry meat like broiler, native chicken and duck meat in fresh chilled and frozen forms. The outlet also provides ready meals like roasted, kietna, kalasan and ungkep (local delicacies) chicken and duck. Owner Eddy Hioe said the concept of the outlet is to provide convenience for consumers to get quality poultry meat and ready meals. “We ventured into this segment because we know people love poultry meat. In addition, there are not so many competitors,” Mr Eddy said.
South Korea bans Canadian beef
[18 February 2015]
South Korea has banned imports of Canadian beef after a case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), or ‘mad cow disease’ was found on a northern Alberta farm last week. According to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) the ban will remain in place "pending further information on the confirmed BSE finding.” CFIA will need to reassure the BSE case does not “pose a health hazard to the Korean people,” John Masswohl, Director of government and international relations for the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association said in an email. South Korea accounts for only 1.25% of Canada’s beef exports.
Indon pork demand, price to rise over lunar New Year
[17 February 2015]
Pig farmers in Indonesia expect the demand and price of pork to appreciate over the lunar new year at the end of this week. Phaithoon N Na Ayudhaya, Swine Specialist of Charoen Pokphand Indonesia, told Asian Agribiz in previous years, there was a 20% increase, especially in Jakarta and Surabaya."However farmers, especially in Solo, Central Java, cannot distribute their finisher pigs to Jakarta due to the flooding in the city since last week. “The situation is getting worst since Kapuk where the government’s pig slaughterhouse is located is also affected by the floods,” said Mr Phaithoon, adding that this situation will affect the price of live pigs since farmers in Solo rely heavily on the Jakarta market.
Betagro invests USD30.7m in new feedmill
[17 February 2015]
Betagro Group has kicked off the construction of its USD 30.7 million feedmill in Thailand, expecting to address domestic demand for quality animal feed. The plant is slated for completion late this year and commercial operation early next year. Chayanon Kittayachaweng from Betagro said that Thailand now needs at least 14,800 tonnes a month of animal feed and the demand is rising. The 7.36ha new plant will have a 4000 tonnes/month capacity in the first phase, to produce products for farms, pet shops, vet clinics and modern trade outlets for local and export markets. “This is in response to market demand for higher quality feed and food,” he said.
Gunung Sewu to add animal protein to its portfolio
[17 February 2015]
Indonesia’s Gunung Sewu Group, owned by the Angkosubroto family, was reported to be interested in taking over 63% of the shares of Sierad Produce. Dayu Ariasintawati, Director of the group’s subsidiary Great Giant Livestock, confirmed this and said that the group wants to be active in the animal protein business in Indonesia. “We want to venture into this sector but it’s easier if we buy an existing company rather than start from the scratch,” she said. Ms Dayu also revealed to Asian Agribiz that the group plans to venture into the dairy industry by setting up an integrated dairy cattle farm and milk processing plant.
Vietnam seafood exports to hit USD8b in 2015
[17 February 2015]
The Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers forecast that seafood exports will exceed USD 8 billion in 2015. The organisation said the country exported aquatic products to 166 markets around the world last year, earning USD 7.84 billion, this is an increase of 16.5% from 2013. Nearly all key seafood products experienced stable growth over the year, especially shrimp exports with a 27% surge due to increased global demand. The country’s total shrimp export revenue last year reached USD 3.95 billion. White-leg shrimp exports hit USD 2.3 billion, while black tiger shrimp netting USD 1.4 billion, up 46% and 4% over the previous year, respectively.
Japan’s pork producers fight for status quo in TPP talks
[17 February 2015]
Japan’s pork industry remains opposed to its government bringing down tariffs on the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)  free trade deal, warning that revising the existing system will ‘destroy’ the local industry. A spokesman for the Japan Pork Producers’ Association confirmed that the industry would continue to lobby the government to retain the protective tariffs that local pork enjoys at present. “We strongly disagree with the government entering into the agreement… if it goes ahead the Japanese pork industry would be destroyed,” Hisao Kuramoto, Managing Director of the association, was quoted by GlobalMeatNews. Reports have emerged, however, that Japanese negotiators have put forward a proposal that would see the current tariffs of USD 4.10/kg of imported US pork slashed to just USD 0.43/kg over 10 years.
Vietnam, HK buy more poultry from Russia
[17 February 2015]
According to a study by the Russian Institute for Agricultural Market Studies, Russia’s shipments to Hong Kong and Vietnam was up by 45% and 201% respectively in 2014 compared to the year before. The study said that it expects Russia’s poultry exports to grow further this year. Daniel Khotko, Senior Expert, attributed this to the devaluation of the ruble against the dollar making the average price of broiler production lower than in the US and the EU. “We see great export potential in Africa for the supply of by-products and carcasses of laying hens, in the Middle East for halal products, as well as in Vietnam, Hong Kong and China.”

Web special
Acceptance and concerns with GM corn in Asia
[16 February 2015]

In this special web report the Asian Agribiz team takes a look at the issues and concerns related to genetically modified (GM) corn. The Philippines was the first in Asean to adopt GM corn. Vietnam and Indonesia will follow this year. In South Asia meanwhile, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka prohibit the use of GM corn. Responses from feed industry players has been positive, but some parties still doubt the technology because of its possible adverse effects to the biodiversity of local corn varieties and human health.

China corn import quotas not issued despite GM approvals
The Chinese government has not yet issued 2015 corn import quotas despite the recent approval of Syngenta’s GM corn for import. High domestic production in 2013 and 2014 resulted in a massive surplus, and the government has been trying to block cheap imports. China blocked more than a million tonnes of US and other corn shipments last year because they included Syngenta’s MIR162 GM corn, which had not at that time been approved. Many feed companies and domestic food manufacturers prefer imported corn because it’s both cheaper and higher quality. Earlier this year the government made another effort to reduce its surplus, requiring companies applying for 2015 import quotas to first buy surplus grain from overstuffed government storehouses. The purchases have been completed, but little of the grain has been delivered and the Tariff Rate Quotas or TRQs have not been issued.

Indonesia may adopt GM corn seed this year
Indonesia is expected to adopt GM corn this year. Bambang Purwantara, a member of the Commission of Genetically Engineered Products Biosafety, said that there are two GM corn seeds that are under assessments. “Both of the seeds have received the approvals for feed and food safety, but haven’t received the approval for environment safety. If the approvals are secured, the government then can legalise the seeds for commercial purpose,” Mr Bambang explained. Dr Desianto Budi Utomo, Secretary General of the Indonesian Feed Millers Association, told Asian Agribiz that the association would welcome the government’s approval, since it will increase national corn production. Corn imported by Indonesia from Latin America and the US are also GM.

Vietnam set to grow GM crops
Cultivation of new GM strains in Vietnam are expected to start this year. By 2020 the country is looking at an area under cultivation of between 30% and 50% of the total farmland, VietNamNet Bridge reported. Pham Van Toan, Head of the Vietnam Academy of Agricultural Sciences under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), said the move is to increase the yield of grains for animal feed. Last August MARD approved the use of four strains of GM corn. The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment issued the Certificate of Biosafety for GM corn variety MON 89034 of Dekalb Vietnam Co Ltd, a subsidiary of US-based Monsanto. The certificate is an important for the commercialisation and formal application of GM corn, allowing for mass production this year.

Farmers need more productive corn seed
Farmers in East Java and North Sumatera hope the Indonesian government will legalise the use of GM corn seeds. Winarto Tohir, Head of the Farmers and Fishermen Group (KTNA) for East Java region, said farmers are currently using hybrid corn seeds, “but the seeds are not resistant to pests and diseases.” He believes that if farmers are allowed to use GM corn seeds, local demand for animal feed use can be met. Last year Indonesia imported 3 million tonnes of corn valued at USD 1 billion. Tata Habib Nasution, Head of KTNA for North Sumatera region, said corn production in the Philippines increased by 10 tonnes/ha after using GM corn seed. “In Indonesia, the average productivity of hybrid corn seed is around 5-6 tonnes/ha.”

Monsanto’s NK603 GM corn tests ongoing in Thailand
In 2007 Thailand lifted the ban on GM testing, issuing guidelines that required GM testing to be done only on government land and in collaboration with a government body. Monsanto in 2013 cooperated with Naresuan University in Phitsanulok to begin testing on NK603 GM corn. Tests are now ongoing. Thailand’s largest agribusiness company, Charoen Pokphand (CP), has long been a driver of the corporate seed monopoly agenda in Southeast Asia. CP is the principle foreign licensee of Monsanto’s DeKalb Genetics, where it has developed its own hybrid seeds and distributed them for free to farmers throughout the region.

Hurdles ahead for GM corn in India
Commercial cultivation of GM corn remains a distant dream in India as GM corn is still only at field trial stage. “It is the policy of the federal government to follow assessments of GM crops and commercialisation happens only when it was found to be safe,” officials at the Union Ministry of Environment told Asian Agribiz. Meanwhile, the governments of Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala, Uttarakhand and Karnataka states have prohibited GM crops in their states. Apart from this, citizens, especially the farming community are concerned about the implications on health, economy and ecology.

Monsanto waiting for Indonesia’s decision
Monsanto Indonesia is still waiting for environment safety approval for its GM corn seeds that are now under registration and assessments by the Commission for Genetically Engineered Products Biosafety. “We hope to receive the approval this year,” said Herry Kristanto, Corporate Affairs Lead. “Once we receive the approval, we will conduct several tests for one growing season.” Mr Herry said the company’s GM corn seeds are targeted for local and international markets. Mr Herry added that if GM corn seed are introduced productivity can be increased by more than 7 tonnes/ha.

Not a magic wand for Vietnam
Vietnamese scientists argue that while the approved GM corn seeds can resist flies and herbicides, bigger problems are drought, and the lack of equipment. Dr Tran Hong Uy, former head of the Maize Research Institute, an arm of MARD, said the average yield of GM corn varieties is not higher than that of Vietnamese varieties. “Developing GM crops will make Vietnamese farmers more dependent on foreign seed suppliers,” he said. “GM crops will not reduce cultivation costs, and will spoil the ecological environment and biodiversity in addition to harming people’s health.” Dr Tran Dinh Long, Chairman of the Vietnam Plant Seed Association, believes that it would be better to develop the existing Vietnamese hybrid corn seed that can yield 8-10 tonnes/ha. Dr Uy agrees. He said the local varieties are reasonably priced and adapt easily to different land areas and can be stored for a long time.

Naresuan University tests GM corn
Thailand’s Naresuan University has done their first field tests with a variety of GM corn, according to Crop Biotech Update. Suchin Chinayon, Naresuan University Rector said the project took approximately seven months in 2013 and the Faculty of Agriculture tested the GM glyphosate resistant corn NK603. Initial tests were conducted in a small-contained plot at the agricultural research station in Phitsanulok. Mr Chinayon said: “Thailand must develop new corn varieties to improve and protect crops against pests and disease. At the same time, the country should begin to be aware of their position in the agricultural sector as the Asean Economic Community comes into force in 2015.”

Use of GM corn widespread in the Philippines
Industry observers note that the majority, if not all, of the yellow corn grown in the Philippines are already GM. The Department of Agriculture in 2014 declared the country self-sufficient in corn. Figures from the Philippine Statistics Authority said that last year, total corn production in the country reached 7.8 million tonnes valued at over USD 2.29 billion. The GM corn has not been without opposition, with groups like Greenpeace and local NGO Masipag protesting their cultivation due to possible adverse effects to the environment and health. However, Mercy Buyoc, an animal nutrition consultant, told Asian Agribiz that: “No genetic aberrations have manifested in animals that consume feed with GM corn. In addition, Jose Elias Inciong, President of the United Broiler Raisers Association, noted the discussion on the safety of GM corn is irrelevant as meat products imported from the US and other sources are from animals fed with GM corn.

Indonesia should adopt GM seed technology
Budi Tangendjaja, US Grain Council Technical Director said corn farmers in the Philippines have seen better productivity and lower production costs with the use of GM corn seed. Dr Budi added that it’s reported that the content of mycotoxins in GM corn tends to be lower because the corn ears are not or less damaged by pests so fungus development is decreased.

Scientists, stakeholders push for GM crops
While the GM crop debate is on in India, leading scientists and other stakeholders stress the need for GM crops to ensure food security. In the recently concluded 102nd Indian Science Congress, eminent scientists like Rajendra Singh and Deepak Pental called for removal of policy hurdles to facilitate use of GM crop technology. Scientists in India are pushing for the approval of GM crops to ensure food security. “I personally believe that GM corn will ensure adequate availability of corn in India and this in turn will fulfil the feed requirements for the poultry industry,” K G Anand, General Manager of Venkateshwara Hatcheries, told Asian Agribiz.

Malaysia maintains an ‘open minded’ stance
Malaysia produces about 5 million tonnes of compound feeds annually. The poultry and swine industries are dependent on imported feed ingredients such as corn and soy. “Malaysia is open-minded and does not see any reason to block GM raw materials,” said a scientist. “As crops they are more efficient, use less pesticides and produce higher yield. It is one way to improve productivity especially with a growing population,” he said, adding that the products must be well tested. He, however, said there should be clear guidelines “like the FDA has for drugs”. Some senior feed nutritionists and sales and marketing managers, when asked when GM raw materials were introduced in Malaysia, said “as long as they could remember”.

Sri Lanka keeps GM corn at bay
Some 50% of corn demand for animal feed in Sri Lanka are sourced locally, while the remaining is imported from India. M Imtiaz, Chairman of Crysbro Group of Companies, told Asian Agribiz: “We cannot use corn from Latin America since the government does not allow the use of GM corn for feed and food.” Poultry and feed associations in the country have lobbied the government to allow the use of GM corn since this move will help poultry producers in the country to be more competitive in terms of production cost.

Pakistan says ‘no’ to GM corn
In March 2014 the Pakistan High Court prohibited the government from issuing licenses for the import of GM corn seeds without proper analysis. Dr Abdullah Ahmad Tahir, Animal Nutritionist and Production Manager of Al-Meezan Poultry Feeds and Allied Products, said feed millers have little information about GM corn seeds. “They just apply strict measures to quality such as results of proximate analysis and mycotoxins level,” he said. According to him, growing GM corn seeds should be allowed if close observations and assessments have been done and the seeds are safe for livestock and human health.

Some producers in Singapore avoid GM ingredients
Singapore allows the import of agricultural biotech products such as GM corn and soy for use in foods and feeds. The official regulatory agency for GM foods is the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) while the non-regulatory advisory committee, the Genetic Modification Advisory Committee, works closely with the AVA to ensure GM food safety. Despite this, not all poultry producers use GM raw materials as feed ingredients. Chew Chee Bin, Chew’s Group Limited Chairman, told Asian Agribiz the company avoids GM raw material and instead uses corn and soy from India and Myanmar. It also uses a lot of food grade material such as biscuits and bread that are no longer on the shelves, as well as barley, wheat and soy from food producers.

Philippines could turn to alternatives should DDGS prices rise
China’s approval of Syngenta’s MIR 162 corn could lead to substantial orders for US corn and DDGS. This may mean a significant increase in the price of DDGS. Ameer Pahm, President of the Philippine Society of Animal Nutritionists told Asian Agribiz that the use of DDGS in the Philippines has been increasing over the last five years. He added though that the removal of residual oil by many ethanol plants over the last three years has lowered its energy value while the price today has been limiting its use. Dr Pahm said that local rice bran, corn bran, copra meal and wheat by-products are still the main substitute for DDGS particularly for growing and breeding hogs.

ARIEF FACHRUDIN reports from PPUN & Pinsar seminar, Indonesia
[13 February 2015]

Poultry farmers worry about DOC oversupply
Indonesian poultry farmers have asked the government to regulate the import quota of broiler GP & PS as well as to control the supply and demand of live birds. Sigit Prabowo, Chairman of the National Poultry Farmers Association (PPUN), told Asian Agribiz that last year many of its members lost severely due to oversupply and low live bird prices. “Losses were around USD 584 million. And every week we saw a broiler DOC supply exceed by around 4-7 million,” said Mr Sigit. Based on calculations, broiler DOC production this year may reach 64 million/week because in 2013 Indonesia imported around 660,000 broiler GP. The demand, meanwhile, is only 47 million/week. “We will see an excess of around 17 million/week, far higher than last year. The government should initiate early PS culling to prevent another bad year,” he said.

Government sets strategies to prevent oversupply
Based on recent data from Indonesia’s Ministry of Agriculture, chicken meat contributes 66% of the total meat consumption, of this 50% is from broiler meat. The ministry has also predicted that broiler production this year to reach 3.3 billion birds. Director of Livestock Breeding, Abubakar, told Asian Agribiz that the demand was estimated at only 2.44 billion birds. So there will be an excess supply of 890 million birds. To prevent this, he said that the ministry has set some strategies including early PS early culling and regulation of GP imports. “There are 14 GP importers & breeders who distribute their PS to 80 PS breeders. If these 80 PS breeders refuse to give data of their production and capacity, we will freeze the GP import permit. We want transparency and need valid data to calculate supply and demand,” Mr Abubakar explained.

Integrators asked to focus on processed products market
Many farmers in Indonesia complain of unfair competition in the industry. An official of Pinsar Indonesia (the Indonesian Poultry Farmers Association and Information Centre) for South Sulawesi region told Asian Agribiz that the problem is that integrators also sell live birds to traditional markets. "These big companies who have technology, slaughterhouses and further processing plants, should focus on processed products market and leave the traditional market to us.” Rudi, a broiler farmer from South Kalimantan, concurred and said that the situation is the same in his region. He hopes the government can differentiate the market for farmers and integrators.

Thai Ag Ministry to launch safe meat campaign
[13 February 2015]
Thailand’s Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives will be launching a safe meat campaign at Yingcharoen Market in Bangkok today to enhance public awareness of the importance of safe meat consumption. The campaign is scheduled to kick off before the Chinese New Year to ensure that meat sellers supply quality products to buyers, as the demand for pork, poultry and eggs usually surges during this period. The Livestock Development Department that supervises the activity will educate consumers on how to choose safe and quality meat and eggs. There are currently 9000 farms, 1874 slaughterhouses and 4000 meat markets whose hygienic standards have been certified by the department across the country.
Avian flu continues to rage in Taiwan
[13 February 2015]
Animal health officials in Taiwan have reported 35 more poultry sites hit by H5N8 avian influenza, with the H5N3 virus striking three more locations and another 72 H5N2 outbreaks. The H5N8 outbreaks affected 34 farms and one slaughterhouse in five different counties as well as in the cities of Tainan and Kaohsiung. The H5N2 virus was also found on three farms. Most of the farms housed geese, but a few were raising ducks, chickens, and turkeys. H5N3 outbreaks were in Yunlin and Pingtung while the H5N2 outbreaks were identified in Taoyuan, Tainan, Kaohsiung, and Taichung, affecting geese, chickens, ducks, and turkeys.
Vietnam is largest shrimp exporter to South Korea
[13 February 2015]
Vietnam was the largest shrimp exporter to South Korea in 2014 in terms of both volume and value, the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers said on its website. Vietnamese shrimp accounted for nearly half of South Korea’s imports last year, with 27,791 tonnes, ahead of China at 13,936 tonnes. Vietnam’s shrimp export volume to the republic increased by 36% last year compared to 2013, while export value reached USD 290.2 million, up 60%, said the association.
Bird flu outbreaks to boost Thai chicken exports
[12 February 2015]
Thailand is expected to export more chicken this year following outbreaks of bird flu in several countries since late last year, according to a report issued by Kasikorn Research Centre. The deadly disease has been found in a number of countries including China, Japan, the Netherlands, the US, Canada, Egypt and Nigeria. Several countries have imposed import bans on chicken from producing countries, the report said. The ban may help push Thailand’s exports of chicken and its products this year, while confidence in Thai chicken would be further boosted. Kasikorn Research Centre forecasts that Thailand would earn about USD 2.4 billion from exporting frozen and processed chicken in 2015, up 4.5% from last year.
CJ CheilJedang records USD6.6b revenue
[12 February 2015]
CJ CheilJedang recently announced its annual results in 2014 showing total revenue minus CJ Korea Express, at USD 6.6 billion, up 2.2% from the previous year. “We pushed ahead with aggressive restructuring at all the units including food business. Along with this, the recovery in the international price of lysine improved our profitability despite the prolonged depression in domestic demand,” said the company. Its food business recorded annual sales of USD 3.5 billion last year, up 1.9%. Its biological resource department achieved USD 1.4 billion, up 4.4% since sales of feed in its major overseas markets such as Indonesia and Vietnam increased year on year despite shrinking demand caused animal diseases like porcine epidemic diarrhea.
Indonesia to develop cattle embryo transfer centres
[12 February 2015]
In order to achieve beef self-sufficiency, Indonesia’s Ministry of Agriculture this year will develop cattle embryo transfer centres in several regions. Agriculture Minister Amran Sulaiman said the ministry plans to allocate USD 395,000 to develop nine cattle embryo transfer centres in West Sumatera, South Sumatera, West Nusa Tenggara and East Nusa Tenggara. “Through this program we expect to increase the birth rate of twin calves by 500,000 heads per year,” he said. In addition, the ministry this year will also intensify artificial insemination with a target to inseminate 2 million cows.
Pakistan’s meat industry to focus on feedlot fattening
[12 February 2015]
Pakistan’s meat industry is set to focus on raising the weight of calves and buffaloes through feedlot fattening with a protein-rich diet. Stakeholders in the meat industry achieved consensus in this regard at a seminar hosted by US Agency for International Development (USAID) with Punjab Halal Development Agency (PHDA) recently. Saeed Ahamed, Deputy Governor of the Islamic Banking Department at the State Bank of Pakistan said commercial banks will help farmers purchase calves to raise on high quality feed. Pakistan’s meat industry is valued at USD 115 million and is said to be underutilised due to poor feeding and low quality production of beef.
Branding China’s agri industry
[12 February 2015]
China released its 2015 rural policy, or the ‘number one document’ recently, highlighting modernising agriculture and food safety as key priorities. Some agri firms think that high quality products, modern production and food safety are achievable if agribusinesses create brands. “Agribusiness players should be pioneers in modernisation. You can't just rely on expanding production. Only with a brand can modern agriculture go further,” Yu Xubo, President of China’s largest food company, Cofco Corporation, said. Integrating the whole industrial chain is one way to cross the food safety scandals plaguing the country. To enhance quality and safety supervision, Cofco set up a mechanism to monitor the entire food production process.
FAO & SIB cooperate to combat viral infections
[12 February 2015]
The UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has chosen the Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics (SIB) as a designated reference centre to expand its access to state-of the-art technology in combating dangerous viral infections, including avian influenza and foot-and-mouth disease, in farm animals and wildlife. The SIB is equipped with high performance computers, software, databases and a knowledgebase used for screening and monitoring zoonotic diseases. Working closely with FAO, SIB experts have developed tools to improve early detection and fast alert systems to prevent and respond to trans boundary disease emergencies in poultry or livestock. "The new technology helps us understand biological threats in order to help countries better prevent, respond and ultimately protect the health of humans, animals and the environment," said FAO's Chief Veterinary Officer, Juan Lubroth.
De Heus to start building boar station next month
[11 February 2015]
In a move to raise farming standards in Vietnam, feed producer De Heus LLC (Vietnam) will start construction of a boar station in Binh Duong, in March. The first phase of the project will produce 120 boars and available semen for its customers, Gabor Fluit, General Director, told Asian Agribiz. Phase two will see the company supply gilts. “In the swine sector in Vietnam there is a large supply of semen available but quality is the issue. The average farm here can produce 20-22 piglets/sow/year. The Netherlands, Denmark and Germany produce 28-30 piglets/sow/year. This is a huge gap and we want to help improve the genetics in Vietnam,” he said.
South Korea lifts ban on Thai chicken imports
[11 February 2015]
South Korea has finally resumed imports of frozen chicken from Thailand after an 11-year ban, Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister, Petipong Pungbun Na Ayudhya announced. He said the lifting of the ban has prompted a 6-7% growth in Thai exports of frozen chicken, to 600,000 tonnes in 2015, valued at around USD 2.5 billion. The first exports from Thailand are expected to in June. According to Mr Petipong, the renewed arrangement would mean South Korea will be Thailand’s top importer.
Pig farmers gain from communication technology
[11 February 2015]
Social media and messaging applications have benefited pig farmers in Indonesia. Phaithoon N Na Ayudhaya, Swine Specialist of Charoen Pokphand Indonesia, told Asian Agribiz that it has helped mainly in communicating live pig prices. “If we don’t communicate and share information, we can be cheated by middlemen,” he said. To prevent price manipulation, Karya Prospek Satwa, a partner of CP Indonesia uses social media like Facebook to communicate and share information with pig farmers from different regions. “We have a Blackberry Messenger (BBM) group with farmers in Java and North Sumatera. Every day we share information on live pig prices in their region,” said Mr Phaithoon. “We recently set up a BBM group with farmers in North Sulawesi. The community has gained from this communication technology.”
Yum confident of KFC’s growth in China
[11 February 2015]
US QSR giant Yum Brands revealed that KFC’s China stores reported a 16% decline in Q4 business due to a scandal at OSI Group’s Shanghai subsidiary, which supplied some products to KFC. Yum Chairman Greg Creed expressed optimism that business would gain momentum in 2015. Mr Creed noted Yum’s China Division had opened 737 new units during the 2014 fiscal year, including 376 KFC stores, and planned to open another 700 units in 2015.
Drastic measures needed to revive Vietnam’s pangasius industry
[11 February 2015]
Vietnam’s tra fish industry has contracted in the last five years. About 80% of businesses are in difficulty. Breeders and processing plants have not invested in growth. Le Vinh Tan, Deputy Head of the Central Economic Committee, said local authorities should work closely with Vietnam Pangasius Association and relevant agencies to help restructure the industry. Secretary General of the Vietnam Pangasius Association Vo Hung Dung said the restructuring project should aim to improve quality, rebuild the image, increase access to capital and widen distribution and export markets.
MPEDA keen on producing shrimp seed locally
[11 February 2015]
The Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA) in India is keen on producing shrimp seed locally and to promote finer quality shrimp seed. Presently, shrimp seed is produced by MPEDA in association with the Oceanic Institute in Hawaii, USA. Speaking at an aqua farmers meeting organised by Andhra Pradesh State Fisheries Department, S Kandan, Deputy Director (Aquaculture) of MPEDA said they are awaiting the Union government’s approval for the project. “We are ready to produce disease-free shrimp locally at a reduced cost,” he said.
MPI to commission two new processing plants
[10 February 2015]
Meat Products of India (MPI) based in the southern state of Kerala, expects to commission its new meat processing plants by the end of this year. “The plant in Mundayar will be a chicken processing plant with a 4,000 birds/day capacity,” M P John, Managing Director of MPI told Asian Agribiz. According to him, the other processing plant at Chalakkudy will be for processing around 200 pigs and 200 large animals per day. With the demand for pork and other meat from MPI witnessing a steady increase in Kerala among general consumers as well as the Horeca sector, Mr John said the new plants will help meet the growing demand.
Indonesia’s poultry industry to continue to grow
[10 February 2015]
Indonesia’s poultry industry this year forecasts continued growth with demand for broiler and eggs. Broiler demand this year is estimated to reach 2.7-2.8 million tonnes, according to Don P Utoyo, President of the Indonesian Poultry Society Federation. The industry, meanwhile, is able to produce around 3.5-3.6 million tonnes of dressed birds. Chicken egg demand this year is estimated at around 2.7-2.9 million tonnes, and the industry is able to supply around 3.2-3.3 million tonnes. Mr Don added that the total assets of the broiler and layer industries will be around USD 4.7 billion and USD 3.2 billion, respectively. While the total turnover is expected to reach USD 25.2 billion for broiler and USD 10.3 billion for layer.
Yum takes hit as Little Sheep purchase crashes
[10 February 2015]
US QSR giant Yum Brands reported a USD 86 million Q4 loss worldwide due to a USD 361 million write-down on its investment in Little Sheep, a hotpot restaurant chain in China. Yum bought the chain for USD 587 million in 2012 and had to invest heavily to bring it up to standard. It lost business when rumours spread that the chain had bought fake sheep meat. It was the second write-down for Little Sheep, since Yum took a charge of USD 258 million on the investment in 2013. The total write-down now exceeds the initial investment, but Yum said it still values Little Sheep at about USD 100 million.
McDonald's sales dogged by Asian woes
[10 February 2015]
McDonald's posted a worse-than-projected decline in global sales for January, dragged down by a slump at its Asian restaurants. The world's biggest QSR, McDonald's has suffered a series of setbacks, including the rationing of French fries in Japan and a scandal involving its meat supplier, Shanghai Husi Food Co.in China. In Japan the company lost USD 186 million in 2014 while its sales plunged 39% in January, marking the 12th straight month of declines.
Indonesia aims to achieve corn self-sufficiency
[10 February 2015]
Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo has targeted to achieve corn self-sufficiency in the next three year. For this, the Ministry of Agriculture has allocated around USD 197 million, to open new land of about 1 million ha for corn production. Of the fund, some USD 59 million will be used for hybrid corn seed allocation, while the remainder for infrastructure and other related facilities to support the program. The Indonesian Feed Millers Association (GPMT) has predicted that this year Indonesia may import around 3 million tonnes of corn for animal feed. GPMT Chairman, Sudirman FX said that for Q1, the association has asked the government to allow corn imports of up to 1 million tonnes. Last year Indonesia’s corn demand for animal feed reached 7.5 million tonnes and of this, 3.2 million tonnes were imported.
JBS closer to owning Australia’s Primo
[10 February 2015]
Brazilian meat giant JBS has cleared one of the two main regulatory hurdles in its USD 1.13 billion takeover of big smallgoods company Primo. However, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has flagged its wariness about a consolidating abattoir industry trend. Primo is set to be sold to the meat processing and export giant in a strategic value-adding move set to aid JBS’ Asian market growth. The Group owns the Primo, Hans and Beehive brands and key processing operations in five locations. It has been majority owned by Singaporean-based equity fund manager Affinity Equity Partners for the past three years.
De Heus Vietnam to launch new plants
[09 February 2015]
As part of its efforts to bring quality nutrition to Vietnamese livestock raisers, De Heus will launch two new plants in the first quarter of this year. Its plant in Binh Dinh, with a capacity of 60,000 to 80,000 tonnes/year, is scheduled for an opening ceremony in mid-March, while the Vinh Phuc plant, with a capacity of 200,000 tonnes/year, will open end-March, Gabor Fluit, General Director, told Asian Agribiz. “In Q1 our six factories will produce 850,000 tonnes of feed,” he said. Both these facilities feature high-end technology and automation, requiring only 50% of the workforce compared to the older plants.
KPS involves farmers to produce black pigs
[09 February 2015]
Karya Prospek Satwa (KPS), a partner of Charoen Pokphand Indonesia involved in pig contract farming in Bali, plans to involve pig farmers in producing commercial black pigs. “Initially, we will provide 100 sows to our contract farmers,” Phaithoon N Na Ayudhaya, CP Indonesia Swine Specialist, told Asian Agribiz. “This will help maintain the stability of our black pig meat supply to Jakarta, as well as for promotion to the Horeca industry in Bali.” KPS also plans to develop its black pigs in Toraja, South Sulawesi by setting up a parent stock station with 100 sows. “We will cooperate with a CP feed agent who has a good network with farmers in the region,” said Mr Phaithoon. Once the programs in Bali and Toraja are developed, KPS will develop its black pigs in East Nusa Tenggara.
Thai chicken exports to grow by 6-7%
[09 February 2015]
The Thai Broiler Processing Exporters Association foresees a bright future for the Thai poultry industry, believing it will enjoy an export jump this year. Export volume is expected to reach 600,000 tonnes, a 6-7% growth over last year. Apart from strict compliance with international hygienic standards, the export growth is attributed to the Thailand-South Korea trade deal which is due to come into effect in the middle of this year.
Local supply to meet secondary meat, offal demand
[09 February 2015]
Early this year Indonesia ruled that imports of secondary (beef) meat and offal will not be allowed. Minister of Agriculture, Amran Sulaiman said that local supply can fulfil demand. “We have checked that there are 261,000 heads of beef cattle at feed lotters in West Java and they should be able to meet demand for secondary meat and offal for the following nine months,” he said, adding that the ministry will monitor beef cattle stock in the country to prevent supply scarcity of both products. “If the local supply cannot meet demand, then we will urge the Ministry of Trade to allow imports,” said Mr Amran.
New bird flu infections and outbreak in China
[09 February 2015]
The Guangdong and Zhejiang provinces in China reported seven more H7N9 avian flu infections on Friday, one of them fatal. This raises the global number of H7N9 cases to 553, according to FluTrackers' case list. With no recent updates from national officials in China on what appears to be a third wave of infections that roughly began in September, it's unclear exactly how many cases have been detected over the past few months. In the meantime, China's Ministry of Agriculture confirmed one large outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N6 avian flu on a farm in Hunan province. The outbreak began Feb 2 and agricultural officials reported 3,400 cases of H5N6 and 2,600 deaths within the flock of over 7000 birds.
GAA inks MoU with Vietnam pangasius group
[09 February 2015]
The Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA) and Vietnam Pangasius Association will work together to advance responsible practices in the farming of pangasius and towards Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification, said Carson Roper, International Business Development Manager for GAA’s BAP Division. Mr Roper hopes to strengthen market ties for BAP-certified pangasius. Through the deal VNPA will identify and enrol processing plants, farms, feedmills and hatcheries in the BAP third-party certification program to increase the number of BAP-certified facilities in Vietnam. GAA, meanwhile, will identify market endorsers to promote responsibly produced pangasius products globally and to offer training and seminars to help producers apply VietGAP and the BAP standards to improve their practices.

Web special
Localising QSR fare gains approval, while Asian brands go abroad
[06 February 2015]

Fastfood restaurants are driving production and import of frozen meat in the region. Quick-service restaurants (QSR) are staples in major cities in Asia, and are now trickling into second and third-tier cities to extend its reach. They are adapting to changing lifestyles by launching innovative services and menus. Many brands have drive-through options, offer home delivery and allow online orders. Some are working on mobile apps to target mobile-savvy customers. Perhaps most interesting are efforts at localising the Western burger and fried chicken, serving spicy and sour meals, rice and porridge, and even catering to vegetarians to reach a broader target audience. Meanwhile Asian home-grown brands like Jollibee from the Philippines, Malaysia’s Marrybrown and South Korea’s Lotteria are going international, taking their combo meals to other Asian countries, the Middle East and the US.

First KFC in Myanmar in 2015
Yum! Brands has teamed up with Singapore-listed Yoma Strategic Holdings to bring the KFC franchise to Myanmar. Yoma Strategic’s communications personnel told Asian Agribiz that the first outlet will open mid this year. With 50 million people and a growing middle class with disposable incomes, Myanmar offers significant opportunity for Yoma Strategic. “The macro potential is good. The consumer class is forecast to grow from 2.5 million today to 19 million in 2030, potentially tripling consumer spending by more than threefold,” said Serge Pun, Executive Chairman of Yoma Strategic. Micky Pant, CEO of the KFC division of Yum! Brands said the announcement of the first KFC coming to Myanmar reflects the company’s ongoing strategy of global expansion in emerging markets.

Jollibee looks beyond traditional market
Philippines’ brand Jollibee Food Corporation (JFC) is looking beyond its traditional market of overseas Filipinos as it seeks to make further headway in big markets like the US and China. The company is looking for an equity partner as it plans to spend USD 1 billion to acquire an established restaurant chain in the US. In a report by BusinessMirror, JFC Chairman Tony Tan Caktiong said the company is seeking a strong regional brand. “We don’t want a brand that’s already big.” This echoes a statement made last year by CEO Ernesto Tanmantiong, who said acquiring a bigger chain will help the company become a major player in the US at a faster rate. As of end October 2014 JFC already has 80 stores of its home-grown brand in the US comprising 31 of its flagship Jollibee stores, 30 Red Ribbon stores and 19 Chowking outlets. It opened its first Jollibee store in the San Francisco area in 1998.

Korea’s Lotteria to be among top 3 in Indonesia
In 2012 South Korean retailer Lotte Group’s subsidiary Lotteria Co Ltd entered the fast food market in Indonesia. Working with PT Mondial Risjad Fastana, Lotteria said it is ready to spend USD 20 million on the chain, and expects to open 50 retail outlets by later this year. Last year the company opened 31 outlets in Jabodetabek and Karawang, and five outlets in Bandung. Handi Irawan, President Director of Mondial, said the K-Pop culture has helped boost the popularity of Lotteria outlets, which serve meals from organic food. “We expect Lotteria to be among the top three QSR chains in Indonesia by 2020,” he said. “The main challenge in Indonesia is to identify strategic locations for the outlets and to maintain quality service.”

Malaysia’s Marry Brown expands in India
Malaysia’s home-grown fast-food chain Marrybrown has ventured into India eyeing mainly tier two and three cities in the southern states. The chain currently has 48 outlets, of which 44 are in Tamil Nadu and two each in Bangalore, Karnataka and Kochi. “By the end of this fiscal year we would like to increase the number of outlets to 75,” said Ajith, Director of MGM Entertainments Pvt Ltd, the master franchisee for Marrybrown in India. Following local trends the chain will also offer rice and biryani as well as vegetarian dishes to cater to the local palate. Marrybrown has outlets also in China, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Africa, the Middle East and Myanmar.

BonChon focuses on quality, healthy products
Marrying the K-Pop culture and Indonesia’s love for fried chicken, Michelindo Food International introduced Korean chain BonChon Chicken to the Indonesian fast-food market in 2012. Michelle E Surjaputra, President Director, said the company operates 17 outlets across Jabodetabek, Bandung, Surabaya, Bali and Banjarmasin. “At the moment we are focusing on branding. We will add to the number of our outlets through franchising,” she said. Ms Michelle said BonChon pays attention to quality and healthy products. “We weigh each chicken and we reject the fat ones. Our sauce comes from fruit extract. And we wash our chicken with specially filtered water.”

Vietnam displays appetite for fast-food
Rising living standards, higher disposable incomes, increasingly busy lifestyles and the ongoing Westernisation of Vietnamese culture will support strong growth of KFC, Lotteria and McDonald’s in the next few years. KFC Vietnam was the leading fast-food operator in 2013, with a 17% market share. Long-term establishment, high quality, a good reputation, diversified menus and good services are the company’s competitive advantages. In 2013, the company not only increased its number of outlets but also introduced new products such as Pokkits – a new sandwich product. These helped it record a healthy growth of 23% in 2013.

Binalot goes to the Middle East
Philippine chain Binalot (the Filipino word for wrapped), which offers local rice meals with adobo, bistek (Filipino-style beefsteak), tapa, tocino, sisig and longganisa, and even salted eggs with tomato, with the meals wrapped in banana leaves, is setting up an outlet in the UAE after it awarded a single country franchise to UAE-based retail company Al Ahli Holding Group. Binalot founder Rommel Juan said with overseas Filipino workers making up some 20% of Dubai’s population, Binalot has a lot of potential to grow in the UAE, and Al Ahli is the right partner. Al Ahli hopes to open its first outlet in the Dubai Outlet Mall by late next month. It targets 20 outlets by 2020.

McDonald’s Thailand grows
McThai Co, the Thai operator of McDonald’s QSR, plans to double the number of its stores to more than 400 by 2020, and to become one of the top three operators of McDonald’s restaurants in Asean in terms of store count. The company will budget more than USD 31 million annually for its restaurant expansion over the next five years, said Hester Chew, Chairman of the Executive Committee and CEO of McThai. McThai operates 208 McDonald’s restaurants in Thailand. “We opened 20 new McDonald’s restaurants last year, of which more than 50% are drive-through outlets,” Mr Chew said. The drive-through outlets contribute 20-30% more revenue than traditional restaurants.

KFC Indonesia rides the Korean wave
Responding to signals on the popularity of the K-pop culture in Indonesia, Western iconic fast-food brand KFC Indonesia is looking East with its latest menu featuring KFC Chicken Bulgogi, a recipe from Korea. Korean sells in Indonesia because of the popularity of the K-Pop culture and Korean drama series aired in the country. Taglined ‘Feel the Korean sensation without having to go to Korea’, the promotion serves crispy fried chicken with sesame and Bulgogi sauce, rice, a drink and pudding for USD 2.10.

Jollibee plans to have outlet in Indonesia in 2016
Jollibee Food Corporation (JFC) from the Philippines plans to open outlets in Indonesia next year. JFC CFO Ysmael Baysa said the company has been looking for franchise partners similar to its expansion strategy in the Middle East. The company tried to enter the Indonesian market in the mid-1990s but did not push through with plans due to the Asian financial crisis in 1997. With Indonesia’s population of 250 million, Mr Baysa said there are only 130 McDonald’s outlets, and this presents an opportunity for Jollibee. He said, in the Philippines, JFC is ‘three years ahead’ of McDonalds.

Burger King Malaysia to have new owner
Burger King in Malaysia and Singapore may soon have a new owner. Malaysian in-flight caterer Brahim’s Holdings Bhd, looking to diversify its business, and Quantum Angel Sdn Bhd announced a USD 26 million deal to buy the franchise from Ekuinas Nasional Bhd, a government-linked private equity fund management company. Datuk Seri Ibrahim Ahmad, Brahim’s Executive Chairman, said the Burger King franchise in Malaysia and Singapore is “a strong brand and the trend of increasing fast-food consumption by Malaysian and Singaporean consumers provides us with significant growth potential”.

KFC increases its vegetarian offering
Chicken may be its core product but KFC in India has increased its vegetarian offerings recently as it finds that relying too much on chicken might not be sufficient for growth. “We saw an opportunity to deliver a significant vegetarian range and reach a broader target audience,” said Dhruv Kaul, KFC Director of Marketing. The Paneer Zinger in the burger category is a good example. Although relatively new, this product has already captured 30% of KFC’s sales of vegetarian products. Other popular products such as twisters and strips have all helped increase KFC’s rate of growth on the vegetarian side.

Japfa buys 15% of Myanmar business
[05 February 2015]
Agri-food company Japfa Ltd has acquired the remaining 15% of Japfa Comfeed Myanmar for USD 5.7 million, making it a wholly-owned subsidiary of the group. The acquisition was made via a conditional share purchase agreement (SPA) between Japfa’s wholly-owned subsidiary Japfa Myanmar JV - which currently holds 85% of Japfa Comfeed Myanmar - and Best Livestock Limited, an unrelated third party, for the remaining 15% of the issued share capital of Japfa Comfeed. “A change in the Myanmar regulations has created an opportunity for the group to fully own its Myanmar operations and reap the full benefits of this fast-growing poultry market. By replicating our Indonesian poultry business model, we now enjoy a first-mover advantage and hold a leading market position for poultry in Myanmar," said Tan Yong Nang, Chief Executive Officer of Japfa.
Puspa Agro develops corn farming in East Java
[05 February 2015]
Indonesia’s agribusiness company Puspa Agro has allocated USD 1.6 million for capital expenditure this year. Director Abdullah Muchibuddin said the company will use the capex to develop corn farming through cooperation with farmers in Bojonegoro and Gresik in East Java. “We have prepared 1000ha for a pilot project and target to produce 800 tonnes per harvest season,” he said. He added that a feedmill of France-based animal feed producer PT Invivo Indonesia in East Java will acquire the entire crops.
Chinese policy document pushes land rights reforms
[05 February 2015]
China will step up rural land reforms and agricultural modernisation in order to assure a stable food supply, improve food safety and raise farm incomes, according to a key policy document. The No. 1 Document, so designated to emphasise the importance of agriculture to China, is the first major policy document issued every year by the Communist Party Central Committee and the government’s State Council. This year’s document outlines five key aspects of reform: modernising agriculture, raising farm income, improving infrastructure, deepening land reforms, and strengthening the agricultural and rural legal system to deal with issues such as protection of property rights and market regulation. Among other points, the document said the government would expand an experiment that allows farmers to trade their land to create bigger and more efficient farms.
Indonesia to set up 400 fish processing units by 2019
[05 February 2015]
Indonesia’s Chamber of Trade and Industry (Kadin) plans to set up 400 fish processing units in fish production centres in Indonesia by 2019 to improve the national fish processing industry with value added fish products. Yugi Prayanto, Kadin Vice Chairman for Fishery and Marine Affairs, said if this plan is realised, in 2019 Indonesia will have as many as 1000 fish processing units. Of the targeted 400 fish processing units, 100 will be large capacity units and 300 will be small capacity units. Investment for large capacity units that is equipped with modern technology is around USD 39.4 million, while for small capacity units it is around USD 2.4 million. “So to set up all the units, the total investment is around USD 4.7 billion,” said Mr Yugi.
Pakistan seeking a niche in halal market
[05 February 2015]
Even though Pakistan’s halal sector is still underperforming, the country is set to become one of the active players in the global meat trade, especially in the Middle East and Southeast Asia. According to Dubai Chamber of Commerce, the highly competitive global meat market could be worth up to USD 1.6 trillion by 2018. Reports suggest that the halal sector in Pakistan is striving to create a niche for itself in this highly competitive global market. Statistics from the Bureau of Statistics reveal the country’s halal meat exports rose to USD 230.2 million during 2013-14, a 9% increase over 2012-13. This is due to promotions by the government and the ban on export of live animals.

H5N1 behind turkey deaths in Kerala
[05 February 2015]
The High Security Animal Diseases Laboratory in Bhopal has confirmed that H5N1 was the cause of death of turkeys at a Government Turkey Farm in Kerala, India. “Of the more than 8000 turkeys raised at the farm, 6000 were culled while the rest had died from the disease,” Dr B Aravind, Assistant Director of Animal Husbandry Department said. The farm will closed for three months. According to Dr Aravind, chicken and ducks within a 1km radius were culled as per standard protocol.

Maximising genetic potential through nutrition
[04 February 2015]
Genetic improvements have resulted in sows with a larger mature body size that are capable of producing larger litter sizes and greater milk production. The right nutrition is critical for modern sows to realise their genetic potential to support large litters and produce healthy pigs. At the 2015 Pig Feed Quality Conference (PigFQC) organised by Asian Agribiz, the latest developments in sow nutrition will be a focus topic. Other topics to be covered by regional and international speakers include the role of nutrition in maximising reproduction and productivity of the modern sow, how to increase the sows’ voluntary feed intake using NSP degrading enzymes, and how bio-emulsifiers can improve energy utilisation. The PigFQC will run on April 9-10 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Click here for more information about this two-day conference.
Broiler to see fastest production development in Asia
[04 February 2015]
Towards 2020, in the race of production gains in Asia, the broiler chicken will emerge as the winner over all other meats, experiencing the fastest production development in nearly all countries in the region. Rupert Claxton, senior Gira consultant told Asian Agribiz that the faster rate of growth will be possible due to its lower cost of production, including better feed conversion ratio and faster production cycle, making for a cheaper end product, with more appeal to the consumer. He said technology gains will help reduce the industries’ drain on natural resources. “The key will be for Asian producers to adopt suitable technologies for their environment and systems, which are not necessarily the best available, and then adapt and learn from mistakes already made in their application elsewhere,” he said.
CAB Cakaran to spend USD5m to expand breeder farms
[04 February 2015]
CAB Cakaran Corp has said it will spend around USD 4.13-5.51 million this year to expand its breeder farms in the northern Malaysian state of Kedah. It will also continue to be on the lookout to acquire more breeder and broiler farms. “Our goal is to produce 5 million birds/month from our broiler business by next year. This is achievable as we are already at some 3.3-3.6 million birds/month. Tong Huat will increase the broiler numbers by another 550,000-600,000 birds,” said Christopher Chuah, Managing Director. Tong Huat Poultry Processing Factory Pte Ltd is its new Singapore-based subsidiary. He adds that CAB Cakaran’s poultry margins would improve closer to 5% from its current 3.6%, as it achieves economies of scale. Currently, CAB has 10 breeder farms and 117 broiler farms throughout Malaysia. For the fourth quarter ended September 30, 2014 its net profit was down 36.3% to USD 1.85 million on the back of a 5.09% increase in revenue to USD 49.38 million. For the full year, net profit dropped 6.44% to USD 3.08 million while revenue was up 10.4% to USD 185.26.
Chinese policy document gives GM technology short shrift
[04 February 2015]
The Chinese government gives scant encouragement to boosters of GM corn technology in its 2015 document on agricultural policy. The annual policy paper, called the No. 1 Document to emphasise the importance of agriculture, is issued jointly by the Communist Party’s Central Committee and the government’s State Council. The document calls for agricultural modernisation on many fronts, but devotes only a single phrase to GM organisms: “(China will) strengthen research into GM technology while ensuring the safety and scientific distribution of the technology.” While many Chinese scientists support introducing GM corn seed, saying it will increase yields and reduce reliance on imports, the public is sceptical about the safety of GM crops. The government has approved several varieties of corn, soybeans and other GM crops for import.
Russia interested in Philippine pork
[04 February 2015]
Russia is interested in importing pork from the Philippines and is now in talks with Philippine authorities to clarify trade regulations, a report by BusinessMirror said. Citing National Meat Inspection Service Director Dr Minda Manantan, it said Russia still has to inspect Philippine facilities before deciding whether to import pork. The Philippines is an FMD-free country but it has yet to ship pork to overseas markets. In October 2014, Russia approved the import of crocodile meat from the Philippines.
Perikanan Nusantara to increase fish production
[04 February 2015]
Indonesia’s government this year plans to allocate some USD 15.7 million to PT Perikanan Nusantara, a state-owned company involved in fish processing and frozen fish export. Abdussalam Konstituanto, President Director, said the fund will be used for capital expenditure. “With this our production is targeted to reach 50,000 tonnes,” he said. The company plans to buy two new 500 GT fishing vessels to improve catches. At the moment the company only has six 40 GT vessels. “We will also cooperate with more than 10,000 fishermen to secure raw material for our processing facilities,” said Mr Abdussalam. He added that the company will also set up new cold storage facilities. Perikanan Nusantara produces frozen tuna and skipjack for export. It also produces other processed products like fishballs, sausages and fish sticks, as well as canned fish and fishmeal for local and export markets.

Minh Phu courts foreign investors to expand
[03 February 2015]
Minh Phu Seafood Corp, Vietnam’s largest seafood exporter by value will seek to sell half of itself to foreign strategic investors to help fund overseas expansion and become a global shrimp company by 2020. The company aims to complete the sale this year after it gets approval to delist from the Ho Chi Minh City Stock Exchange this quarter. Minh Phu’s net income is forecast to jump 55% to USD 66 million this year, with sales reaching USD 1 billion, mainly from exports. The company plans to build shrimp processing companies and distribution units in India, Indonesia and the Philippines in the next five years. It also plans to build a 40,000-tonne shrimp processing plant in Ca Mau province this year and another with the same capacity in Hau Giang province in the next three years.
Indonesian feed prices stay due to weak rupiah
[03 February 2015] 
Analyst s have predicted that Indonesia’s poultry companies this year will enjoy a more favourable business environment with lower commodity prices. US soybeans declined 7.3% in two weeks, the biggest since July, while corn shed more than 4% over the same period. Despite this, Dr Desianto Budi Utomo, Secretary General of the Indonesian Feed Millers Association (GPMT), told Asian Agribiz: “We don’t enjoy lower prices as our currency is still weak and we are not able to lower the price of feed.” Dr Desianto said GPMT has predicted corn imports this year may reach some 3 million tonnes, the same as last year. Animal feed production this year is estimated to grow 10% to 17 million tonnes from 15.5 million tonnes in the previous year.
Taiwan troubled by different subtypes of AI
[03 February 2015]
Taiwan reported on January 28 more than 100 avian flu outbreaks of three different subtypes. In a report to the World Organisation for Animal Health, OIE, Taiwan officials said 108 waterfowl farms were struck by HPAI H5N8. The farms are in Changhua, Yunlin, Chiayi, and Pingtung counties and the cities of Tainan, Kaohsiung, and Taichung. Officials said 52 of the farms were also affected by HPAI H5N2 while HPAI H5N3 was reported at three goose farms in Pingtung County. Two of these were also affected by H5N2 outbreaks. Movement restrictions have been imposed at the affected farms, which will be cleaned and disinfected after culling is completed. Farms within 3km of the outbreak sites will be under surveillance for three months.
Frozen chicken seized at Malaysia-Thai border
[03 February 2015]
Malaysian Customs officers seized 1250 boxes of frozen chicken weighing 15 tonnes, worth USD 28,000 at the Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) complex at the Thai-Malaysia border in January. State Customs Director Abdul Latif Abdul Kadir said officers from the Import and Export Division confiscated the chicken from Thailand after finding that documents submitted was false. “The document which expired on January 2 was modified to January 22 to enable the goods to be brought into Malaysia. “The high quality frozen chicken with halal certification was headed for Kuala Lumpur,” he told reporters at the Kedah state Customs Headquarters.
Pakistan can double broiler production in five years
[03 February 2015]
  The Pakistan poultry industry has the capacity to double broiler production from 1.5 to 3 billion birds in five years, provided the government ensures an enabling business environment, said Pakistan Poultry Association Chairman, Dr Mustafa Kamal. Poultry farmers want the government to ensure 24/7 power supply to farms, most of which are located in rural areas where the load shedding duration is very long. He said this would substantially reduce the cost of electricity, as farmers are now forced to produce high cost power from diesel generators.
Indian farmers consider return to black tiger shrimp
[03 February 2015] 
India’s production of vannamei shrimp is likely to drop in 2015, as farmers face disease issues and are considering a shift to producing black tiger instead, reports Undercurrent News. Running mortality syndrome (RMS) is a problem currently faced by producers across Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh – regions that represent 20% and 60% of the country’s shrimp production respectively. Mortality rates from RMS have reached 70% in most cases, with no cure at the moment. As a result, farmers are considering a reverse in the trend with a switch to black tiger farming.
SFP launches aquaculture projects in Indonesia, China, Thailand
[03 February 2015] 
The Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP), with funding from the Walmart Foundation, is launching aquaculture improvement projects in Indonesia, China and Thailand. Shrimp farmers in Indonesia and Thailand and tilapia farmers in China will receive training and knowledge to help them improve their livelihood and increase collaboration to manage and improve water quality and reduce incidences of disease outbreaks. “We are proud to support SFP on this project, which combines environmental sustainability with preserving and sustaining important food sources,” said Kathleen McLaughlin, President, Walmart Foundation.

Web special
Promising developments in Indonesian meat protein
[02 February 2015]

Meat processing may record 15% growth
Despite a number of challenges, Ishana Mahisa, Chairman of Indonesia’s National Meat Processors Association (Nampa), is optimistic that the meat processing industry this year could grow at least 15% over the previous year. “Over the past three years, this industry has been growing ahead of the average growth rate of the food industry of about 10%,” he told Asian Agribiz. However, beef products will not grow significantly this year due to the secondary meat import ban. Chicken products however are predicted to grow more than 20%. “This industry can grow significantly as long as meat availability is assured,” he stressed. Nampa predicted that the total output of processed meat products in 2014 may reach some 180,000 tonnes. With a predicted growth of 15%, this year the total output may reach 200,000-215,000 tonnes.

First shipments to Japan expected in Q1
Indonesia’s poultry companies will enjoy a more favourable business environment this year with the lifting of Japan’s ban on processed-chicken imports from Indonesia. Syukur Iwantoro, Director General of Livestock and Animal Health, said the ban lasted around 10 years. The Japanese authorities have approved exports by Charoen Pokphand Indonesia, Japfa Comfeed Indonesia and Malindo Feedmill. Dr Desianto Budi Utomo, Vice President for Government Liaison of Charoen Pokphand Indonesia, told Asian Agribiz that the company is targeting for the first shipment to leave by mid-February. “This could lead to exports to other foreign countries, especially the Middle East.” Rewin Hanrahan, Malindo Feedmill Director, told Asian Agribiz that the company expects its initial exports in Q1 2015 and hopes to grab a market of 800-1200 tonnes a year with a value of USD 5 million.

2014 golden year for pig farmers
Last year was a golden year for pig farmers in Indonesia Phaithoon N Na Ayudhaya, Business Development Advisor & Swine Specialist of Charoen Pokphand Indonesia, told Asian Agribiz. “The price of live pigs reached USD 2.74 per kg for some months. With production cost around USD 2-2.1, farmers got a good profit. Farmers in Central Java gained most due to the availability of local feed ingredients like corn and rice bran and its proximity to the market in Jakarta,” he said. The high price was led by an oversupply in the two years prior which led many farmers to exit the industry. Higher demand from Jakarta, especially from the Horeca sector (hotel, restaurant, catering) helped raise prices, Mr Phaitoon added.

Pig population predicted to reach 7 million heads
Indonesia’s pig population was expected to grow by 20% in 2014 due to the high price of live pigs. Mr Phaithoon N Na Ayudhaya, Business Development Advisor & Swine Specialist of Charoen Pokphand Indonesia, told Asian Agribiz that the figure would be the same as in 2012 after which it declined 30% in 2013 due to low prices. “The standing population of pigs in Indonesia in 2014 will reach around 6-7 million heads,” he estimated. But this will only happen in production centres beyond Java as permits for expansion and is hard to obtain. Even in Bandung, West Java, pig farms are banned for social and religious reasons.”

Meat processors need 20,800t beef
Indonesia’s National Meat Processors Association (Nampa) has estimated that this year the meat processing industry will need some 20,600-20,800 tonnes of beef. Nampa Chairman Ishana Mahisa told Asian Agribiz, of this, around 2500-2700 tonnes are secondary meat like knuckle and brisket that are mainly processed into smoked beef and beef bacon. The remainder 18,100 tonnes are manufacturing meat (65-95% chemical lean) for meatballs and sausages. Early this year the Ministry of Trade issued a regulation that bans imports of secondary meat. “The ban will make meat processors and end consumers compete to get the meat and this will trigger price increases as local supply is limited,” said Mr Ishana.

Meat processors face electricity, labour problems
Fluctuating power tariffs are limiting the growth of meat processors. State-owned electricity company PLN claimed that the tariff increase is adjusted according to exchange rates and energy prices. “The tariff increase affect our total production cost. It will also limit the growth of the cold chain in Indonesia,” Ishana Mahisa, Chairman of the National Meat Processors Association, told Asian Agribiz. Labour cost is also increasing, he added. “Due to this many Nampa members this year will automate their production for better efficiency. Packaging will be their main focus as this currently entails a lot of labour.”

Indonesia targets USD5.86m revenue from fish exports
Indonesia’s Ministry of Fisheries and Maritime Affairs expects seafood exports this year to reach USD 5.86 billion or an increase of 27% from the previous year. Fish production this year is targeted to reach 24.12 million tonnes, where 6.29 million tonnes will be from capture fishery and 17.83 million from aquaculture. “Our exports are still behind other countries like Thailand and Vietnam,” said Susi Pudjiastuti, Minister of Fisheries and Maritime Affairs. According to Indroyono Susilo, Coordinating Maritime Affairs Minister, from 2015 to 2019 shrimp, tilapia and catfish will be the focus of the aquaculture program. The ministry will develop 100 integrated aquaculture centres in different regions as brood stock and feed production centres as well as for training and education. To comply with international standards, the ministry will continue to certify fish & shrimp farms and hatcheries. At the moment, there are 8200 fish & shrimp farms and 465 hatcheries that have received Good Aquaculture Practices certification.

SMPF confirms buy out Hormel in Vietnam venture
[30 January 2014]
San Miguel Pure Foods Co Inc (SMPFCI), the food manufacturing division of Philippine conglomerate San Miguel Corp (SMC), has confirmed that it will buy out its Hormel Netherlands BV from their joint venture in Vietnam. SMPFCI said its wholly-owned unit San Miguel Purefoods International Ltd signed an agreement to acquire Hormel’s 49% stake in San Miguel Pure Foods Investment (BVI) Ltd, which is the sole investor in San Miguel Hormel (Vn) Co Ltd, which is engaged in live hog farming and the production of feeds as well as fresh and processed meats. Earlier this month, SMPFCI President Francisco Alejo III said that the company is planning to expand in Asean, with new facilities in Indonesia and Vietnam, where it already has a presence, as well as venture into new markets like Malaysia and Thailand.
China reports more H7N9 cases
[30 January 2014]
Two new cases of H7N9 human infections in China has brought the total number of cases reported by Hong Kong's Centre for Health Protection (CHP) up to 499 so far. Both new cases are in Guangdong province, continuing the spate of cases reported from there recently. The CHP said that a number of surveillance measures have been implemented in response to the continuing cases, such as temperature checks for inbound travellers, and the public has been warned to avoid visiting poultry markets and farms, avoid crowds, wear a mask if respiratory symptoms develop, and practice careful hand washing.
Lower oil prices to contribute to lower food prices
[30 January 2014]
The recent oil price drop will have implications for the global food supply chain, said Rabobank. “The size of the drop in oil prices combined with the already significantly lowered agri-commodities will place substantial downward pressure on global food prices, possibly reaching multi-year lows,” said Rabobank’s Clara van der Elst. The price declines of both oil and agri commodities will contribute to lower costs for food production, and in the current global macro-economic climate, Rabobank expects this will eventually lead to lower consumer food prices, with some sectors and regions benefitting from lower costs for longer, depending on the competitive settings.
India challenges WTO panel ruling in poultry imports case
[30 January 2014]
India has challenged the World Trade Organization's (WTO) panel’s order issued on October 14 in 2014 ruling that the country’s ban on US poultry product imports was inconsistent with global norms. The appeal has been filed at the Dispute Settlement Board of the WTO. The WTO Secretariat has confirmed receipt of the notice by India announcing its decision to appeal. India banned imports of poultry products from the US in 2007 as a precautionary measure against outbreaks of avian influenza.
Pork in South Korea is now full traceable
[30 January 2014]
Pork in South Korea is now fully traceable across the entire supply chain, according to the country’s Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. Problems with an earlier pilot project, in operation since October 2012, have been addressed and all pork, from breeding to butchering, packaging and sales have been fully traceable since last December. The ministry said the reason for the focus on pork was to identify the causes of any potential issues regarding the protein and “to provide prompt measures to collect and discharge the problematic meat if and when necessary by recording information of trade stages from breeding to sales”. Consumers are now able to access information such as the location of pig breeders, the date of butchery, butchery inspection results and profiles of the packaging companies.
HKScan to export pork to China from its Forssa plant
[30 January 2014]
China will soon receive meat from Finland’s HKScan Group. The company recently announced that its Forssa pork slaughtering plant received the thumbs up from Chinese food authorities following successful inspections last August. The company awaits export certification from China. HKScan said Russia was formerly a major export destination, so the opening of a new market in China was important in the wake of the bans imposed by Russia last January. According to the firm approximately 60% of the pork exported from Finland comes from its Forssa facility. The company is keen to export other meat products suited to local culinary preferences including poultry meat, processed meats and convenience foods.
Gunung Sewu takes over Sierad Produce
[29 January 2014]
Indonesia’s Gunung Sewu Group, which is controlled by the Angkosubroto family, through its subsidiary Great Giant Pineapple will take over 63% of the shares of Sierad Produce, one of the largest poultry companies in Indonesia. Sierad will publish as many as 2.1 billion new shares with a total rights issue value of USD 87.2 million. Sierad's management said the three previous investors who have a stake of 41.23% namely Jade Field Assets Ltd, Harvest Agents Ltd and Kingdom Industrial Ltd will not take part in this. In agribusiness, Gunung Sewu has businesses in the field of pineapple plantation and processing, cattle feedlots, banana plantations and tapioca production.
GFSI to promote food safety in Asean
[29 January 2014]
For the first time, the flagship food safety event of the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) will be held in Asia in 2015 after 13 successful editions in Europe and North America. With many companies increasing their operations in the Asean region, the GFSI Board has decided to communicate its objectives to a wider audience in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from March 3-5.  Under the theme “Food Safety: a Shared Responsibility”, this year’s program addresses hot topics from both global and regional (APAC) angles. More details available here.
Challenges for India's pig industry
[29 January 2014]
Pork accounts for only 5% of India's animal protein sources mainly due to religious sentiments and cultural perceptions. A report by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) said over a quarter of India’s pigs are in the North Eastern Region (NER), which is dominated by marginal backyard farmers. Sujit Kumar, country representative for Hypor in India told Asian Agribiz that the meat is sold as fresh warm meat from wet markets. Pigs are also reared in backyard and unorganised sectors in Kerala state. There are also a few organised but scattered farms in the states of West Bengal, Bihar, Karnataka, Haryana and Punjab, according to industry sources. Basic Animal Husbandry & Fisheries Statistics revealed that in 2011-2012, an estimated 11.83 million pigs were slaughtered in India, and the yield was only 39 kg/pig.
Philippine pig producers say no need for more imports
[29 January 2014]
Reacting to a statement by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs that Denmark is looking to sell its pork-based products to Southeast Asia, particularly the Philippines and Vietnam, Philippine hog raisers said they have the capability to supply the country’s requirements without having to resort to additional meat imports, a report by BusinessMirror said. The report cited Rosendo So, head of Sinag, a multisectoral group that includes hog farmers, saying additional imports and smuggling “have hurt the local meat industry.” He reiterated calls for the government to address the technical smuggling of pork, saying some unscrupulous importers either misdeclare their shipments as pork offal to pay lower tariffs. He also called on the government to provide more support to the industry to make it more competitive in the export market.
India’s soymeal exports set to hit 26-year low
[29 January 2014]
India's soymeal exports are set to hit a 26-year low in the 2014-15 year ending March as easing of sanctions against Iran has allowed the key buyer to opt for cheaper South American supplies, industry officials said. According to the country's biggest soybean processor Ruchi Soya Industries Ltd, India's 2014-15 soymeal exports could drop to 800,000 tonnes, which is the lowest since 1988-89. Since Soymeal from India costs 5-10% more than supplies from Argentina and Brazil, top buyers of Indian soymeal such as Iran and Japan are turning away. India exported 140,400 tonnes of soymeal to Iran over April to December last year, against record shipments of 1.23 million tonnes in 2013-14.
Nissui sells its Indonesia shrimp farms
[29 January 2014]
Japan’s Nippon Suisan Kaisha (Nissui) has sold all shares of its Indonesia shrimp farms to Trawl Fleet Preobrazhenskaya Base OAO, a Russia-based pollock catcher. The decision was made at a Nissui’s board meeting on January 22. According to the company’s announcement, Nissui will forgive all debts from PT Nippon Suisan Indonesia, a subsidiary engaged in shrimp farming that stopped operations in 2012. Trawl Fleet Preobrazhenskaya, headquartered in Primorye, has paid USD 142,000 for a total of 69.5 million shares, Nissui said.
Positive Q1 expected for China's pig sector
[28 January 2014]
Turbulence is expected to remain with uncertainty in the global pig market in 2015 due to the possible reemergence of PEDv, the developments regarding African swine fever (ASF), the Russian ban and exchange rate developments across the globe, said Rabobank in its Pork Quarterly Q1 report. Driven by production growth after PEDv, Rabobank expects a further cooling down of markets and resulting price pressure in Q1 2015," said Albert Vernooij,  Animal Protein analyst, Rabobank. China however, alongside Brazil is expected to experience a positive Q1. In China, the declining sow herd will only be partly compensated by increasing sow productivity, resulting in pressured production which will support prices.
India to curb antibiotic use in poultry, animal feed
[28 January 2014]
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), the apex government body handling food related issues in India has issued a draft notification prohibiting the use of antibiotics as growth promoters in the poultry and animal husbandry sectors. “We have directed provincial governments to stop use of hormones as growth promoters in poultry and meat as there are known adverse effects on human and animal life,” according to an official in FSSAI. The food regulator has invited comments from stakeholders in this regard and a final notification or order will be passed accordingly.
Big Dutchman’s buys Proline
[28 January 2014] 
The Big Dutchman Group from Germany has acquired a controlling interest in Canada-based Proline Group to strengthen its position in Asia. With about 50 employees globally, Proline is a leading supplier of production technologies for the pig, poultry, and grain handling industries in Asia and Oceania. Its brands are PigPro, ChickPro and GrainPro. Proline has been present in Asia since 1991. Its regional focus, among others, lies in countries such as the Philippines, Vietnam, Australia and China.

Asian Pork Magazine, February 2014 – a sneak peek
[28 January 2014]

Thai pig industry opts for quality meat and exports
Thai pig producers realise the potential and opportunities for the sector, especially now that Russia has opened its market for Thai pork. However, challenges especially on safety issues linger. NITSARA THONGRUNG spoke with the Thai Swine Raisers Association and the Swine Producers and Processors for Exporting Association about the current situation in the Thai pig industry, its issues and concerns and the long term goal.

GreenFeed promotes good swine genetics
Stiff competition in Vietnam’s feedmilling sector has caused feedmillers to take on a broader strategy in their businesses. Foreign and local feedmillers, like GreenFeed Vietnam Corporation, have picked out genetics as the weakest link in the value chain and are ready to offer solutions, RACHAEL PHILIP writes.

Yurun boards the e-commerce train
Retail e-commerce is exploding in China. More and more people are shopping online, buying a bigger variety of products. Now young, urban, internet-savvy, social media-wired consumers are even demanding perishable food like pork meat and other meat products delivered to their doorsteps. RICH HERZFELDER writes one Chinese company is blazing the trail.

FeedPro boosts backyard pig raising
Backyard pig farmers remain the backbone of the Philippine pig industry, but many have been forced out of the business due to high production costs and inefficiencies. ISA Q TAN writes that one company is on a mission to help backyard raisers remain afloat and profitable even with the threat of a more competitive market.

Feed processing – unlocking the nutrient potential – part 2
There still exists a considerable gap between the gross-nutrient content of feedstuffs and that which can be captured by the pig writes TONY EDWARDS. In this last of a two-part series he examines the impact of particle size.

Using biomarkers to detect mycotoxin exposure in swine
For more than 30 years, scientists have worked on the development of so-called ‘biomarkers’ to link health effects and exposure to mycotoxin contamination by measuring one crucial parameter in the blood, gall or other physiological samples. CHRISTINA SCHWAB discusses what are the potentials and pitfalls for mycotoxin biomarkers.

Indonesia bans live GGP, GP imports 
[27 January 2014]
with the rise in avian influenza cases, specifically H5N8 in the US, the Netherland, Germany and Australia, Indonesia’s Ministry of Agriculture has banned the import of live GGP and GP from those countries. However imports in the form of hatching eggs are still allowed. “The measure is to prevent AI virus transfer through live DOC importation,” said Syukur Iwantoro, Director General of Livestock and Animal Health. Mr Syukur said at the moment only two GGP/GP exporting countries are still free from H5N8 namely France and New Zealand. However, he believes that the ban will not affect the number of GGP/GP imports from the US that accounts for 92% of the country’s total GGP/GP import since the bird strains are different.
Four-day ban on slaughter in Taiwan
[27 January 2014]
With 414 farms confirmed infected with various strains of avian flu, including the new H5N2, as well as H5N8 and H5N3, Taiwan began a four-day ban on the killing of chickens, ducks and geese at slaughterhouses across the island, last Saturday until Wednesday . The agriculture council said that a total of 605,308 birds have been culled at 276 affected farms. Chen Bao-ji, head of the agriculture council, said the ban will last until Wednesday noon, during which slaughterhouses will be cleaned and disinfected.
Brazil’s WTO move raises fears in Indonesia
[27 January 2014]
Brazil is ramping up efforts at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) to resolve a long-standing dispute with Indonesia, which has placed restrictions on the South American country’s chicken exports. Commenting on the news, Don P Utoyo, President of the Indonesian Poultry Society Federation, said the news has raised fears among industry players. “If imports of Brazilian chicken are allowed, the Indonesian poultry industry, from the upstream to the downstream, will suffer losses,” said Mr Don. He calculated that the total losses – from breeding, commercial farming, feed milling, veterinary drugs and processing – can potentially reach USD 30 billion.
Burger King introduces double pork burger to Beijing
[27 January 2014]
Pork makes up almost two-thirds of the Chinese meat diet, but Western QSRs have not had much success putting the most popular meat onto their menus. Now Burger King is making a new effort to crack the code with its double pork burger, two grilled pork patties on a hamburger bun. The item is part of Burger King’s ‘King Value’ menu, introduced to Beijing outlets late last year. With China’s beef price at an all-time high, the pork burger also provides a lower price point for customers. Burger King’s Beijing outlets recently raised the price of its basic all-beef Whopper to USD 3.60, but for the same price you can get a set meal of double pork burger, fries and a Pepsi. A standalone pork burger is just USD 1.57.
Vietnam seafood exports up in 2014
[27 January 2014] 
Vietnam’s seafood exports surged in 2014 with an export turnover of USD 7.9 billion, the highest in three years. This exceeded the target of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (Vasep) by USD 920 million and was an 18.4% increase on 2013. According to Asia Briefing Ltd, by end 2014, orders to its key markets slowed down, however, an increase in exports to Asean nations and China made up the shortfall. “It is worthwhile to note that the main reasons for growth were external rather than because of quality. This could prevent growth from continuing in 2015,” said the report. For 2015, Vasep has set a target of USD8 billion. “The biggest challenges will be due to the new safety standards that are expected to be implemented later this year,” said the report.
Brunei’s Golden Corp to boost shrimp output by 2017
[27 January 2014]
Brunei-based seafood processing firm Golden Corp processes more than 60 tonnes of shrimp per month and exports them to China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea, Japan and the US. The company said it has acquired 2 million sq km of land in the Tutong district to breed organic blue shrimps and plans to increase its annual production from 1000 tonnes to 5000 tonnes by 2017. Golden Corp’s MD Richard Chuang Hsi Shan said: “There are four zones at the shrimp farm and we are hoping to get Zone A fully operational by early 2015.”

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