Egg Industry News


Bayer Loses Second Glyphosate Case

03/21/2019

A six-member jury in San Francisco ruled in favor of Plaintiff Edwin Hardeman who alleges that a diagnosis of non-Hodgkin lymphoma was caused by exposure to glyphosate, the active component of Roundup® manufactured by Monsanto, now owned by Bayer AG.

In the first phase of the trial the jury was tasked with weighing epidemiologic and toxicological evidence advanced by experts on both sides to determine whether the compound was carcinogenic. The second phase will involve an assessment of direct and punitive damages and will consider whether Monsanto "adopted a responsible, objective approach to the safety of Roundup" as quoted by Plaintiff's Attorney Aimee Wagstaff.

Three additional bellwether trials will be heard in Federal courts in the next six months. A total of 11,200 claims have been filed with the exposure of Bayer amounting to $5 billion. As a result of the unexpected verdict, shares of Bayer AG fell by nine percent.

Withdrawal of glyphosate from the agricultural market would adversely impact crop yields and would lead to the use of potentially more toxic herbicides. The planting of GM glyphosate-resistant corn, cotton and soybean cultivars would be sharply reduced and cost of production would escalate.


 

FDA Issues Guidance and Standards to Contribute to Wholesomeness of Leafy Products

03/21/2019

On March 15th the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a rule to finalize compliance dates for agricultural water requirements arising from the Food Safety and Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule. Large farms will be required to comply by January 2022 with small farms one year later.

Contaminated water was identified as a cause of adulteration of Romaine lettuce in two separate outbreaks investigated by the CDC and FDA.

Over the long term, outbreaks of Listeria, Salmonella and E.coli will inevitably arise as a result of contamination along the chain of production and distribution of green vegetables eaten raw in salads. At the present time, the only certain method of eliminating bacterial contamination is the application of electron beam treatment that would add fractionally to cost but would represent a considerable improvement in safety.


 

Delay in U.S. China Presidential Meeting

03/21/2019

The Presidential meeting to finalize the trade agreement between the U.S. and China will be delayed until at least late April according to International Trade. Although progress has been made in resolving trade issues, there is still concern over intransigence by China to amend structural policy including state subsidies for industry, industrial espionage and coercive practices with regard to intellectual property.

U.S. Trade Representative, Robert Lighthizer emphasized that "major issues" are still unresolved. According to informed observers, officials in China are disinclined to subject President Xi to last minute demands, the embarrassment of a cancelled summit or a walk-away. In a recent statement President Trump noted, "We can have the deal completed and come and sign it or we can get the deal almost completed and negotiate some of the final points. I will prefer that. But it doesn't matter that much."

Herein lies the uncertainty by China according to Dr. Eswar Prasad of Cornell University and an expert on the Chinese economy who stated, "The concern about being snookered by President Trump at the negotiating table is a real risk for Xi."


 

Campaign to Adopt USMCA Intensifies

03/21/2019

During the past week, the Pass the USMCA Coalition, representing trade associations, business and advocacy groups including the USPOULTRY, the National Chicken Council and the National Turkey Federation will be launching TV commercials and digital advertisements to generate support for the USMCA. The first TV ad to run in the Washington DC area promises a "new era of economic and creative prosperity within reach" according to a report in International Trade.

What was originally regarded as a done deal, the USMCA has come under criticism from incoming Democratic freshman to the House together with some Republicans who are defying the presidential call for Congress to support USMCA.

The USMCA must be approved by legislatures of all three signatories to come into effect. The Administration has threatened to withdraw from NAFTA possibly as a tactic to ensure acceptance of the agreement.

The advertisement will claim that the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement will level the playing field for workers, consumers and farmers with more free markets, fairer trade and robust economic growth.


 

Iowa State Dean Appointed

03/21/2019

According to an Egg Industry Center circular Dr. Dan Robison has been appointed as the Dean of Iowa State University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences effective January 2019.

This new appointment is important for the Egg Industry Center (EIC) as in his position he holds a seat on the EIC Advisory Board. In commenting on his involvement with the EIC, Dr. Robinson stated "I am thrilled to be in this role and to become fully engaged with the EIC.

A search committee will be established to recruit and select the next Egg Industry Center Director following the appointment of Dr.ongwei XinH Hongwei Xin as Dean for Agricultural Research at the University of Tennessee.


 

USDA Weekly Egg Price and Inventory Report, March 21st 2019.

03/20/2019

  • Hen Numbers in Production Stable from Previous Week at 323.0 million.
  • Shell Inventory Up a Substantial 6.4 Percent from Previous Week.
  • USDA Midwest Benchmark Generic Prices for Extra Large, Large and Medium Unchanged Compared to Past Week.
  • Breaking Stock Price Continues Way Below Cost of Production

OVERVIEW

Prices

According to the USDA Egg Market News Reports posted on March 11 th the Midwest wholesale prices for Extra Large, Large and Mediums were unchanged compared to the past week. The progression of prices during 2019 is depicted in the USDA chart reflecting three years of data, updated weekly.

The March 18th USDA Egg Market News Report (Vol. 66: No. 11) documented a USDA Combined Region value rounded to the nearest cent, of $0.90 per dozen delivered to warehouses for the week ending March 12th and reflects the sharp downturn during the week. This price lags current Midwest weekly values by one week. The USDA Combined range for Large in the Midwest was $0.82 per dozen. At the high end of the range, price in the Southeast Region attained $0.95 per dozen. The USDA Combined Price last week was 40 cents per dozen below the three-year average and $1.15 cents per dozen below the corresponding week in 2018 which was exceptionally high.


 


AEB Promotes Lutein Content of Eggs

03/19/2019

Research suggests that the lutein and zeaxanthin in eggs are more bioavailable compared to plant sources.

Lutein content of eggs can be increased to meaningful levels by supplementing diets with additives

containing lutein derived from extraction and concentration of extracts from marigold petals.


 

Trader Joe’s Reduces Plastic Packaging

03/19/2019

In response to consumer requests, Trader Joe's will eliminate single-use of plastic packaging and will replace styrofoam trays with recyclable or biodegradable alternatives. The initiative follows a Green Peace petition signed by 100,000 consumers. A spokesperson for Trader Joe's, Kenya Friend-Daniel stated, "As a neighborhood grocery store we feel it is important for us to be the great neighbor our customers deserve - part of that means better managing our environmental impact."


 

Eggland’s Best Receives Most Recommended Eggs Awards

03/19/2019

For the fifth consecutive year Eggland's Best shell eggs were named America's Most Recommended Egg by the Women's Choice Award®. Eggland's Best hard-cooked peeled eggs also received this distinction for the second consecutive year.

Commenting on the award, Charlie Lanktree, president and CEO stated, "At Eggland's Best we strive to provide the only good egg good enough for women and their families with superior nutrition and taste. We are honored to be recognized for the fifth consecutive year."

The award was featured in the Tuesday March 12th edition of USA Today together with other recipients including Allied Movers, Dominion Energy, the Manpower Group and International Paper.


 

Advanced Molecular Assays Identifies Source of Infection

03/19/2019

A recent publication in Eurosurveillance identified the location at which EU visitors from northern European nations were infected during holiday travel. From 2000 to 2016, incident cases of Salmonella Chester were diagnosed in Norway from citizens traveling to southern Europe, Asia and Africa. Of specific interest were the Mediterranean islands of Rhodes and Cyprus and also Morocco.

Isolates were subjected to multilocus sequence typing and nucleotide polymorphism-based genome mapping. Sequence Type (ST) 411 affecting 17 patients was acquired in southern Europe, ST 1954 was identified in 15 patients who were infected in Africa and ST 343 infected 11 patients travelling to Thailand and Sri Lanka. This epidemiologic study demonstrates the power of molecular assay to identify both geographic location and where available vehicle of infection.

*Sira, L. et al Whole Genome Sequencing of Salmonella Chester Reveals Geographically Distinct Clusters, Norway 2000 - 2016 Euro Surveill 2019: 24: doi.org/10.2807/1560-7917. ES.2019.24.4.1800186


 

MOBA Introduces Multi Outlet Innovation to Reduce Contamination.

03/17/2019

At the 2019 IPPE, MOBA a leading producer of integrated grading, packaging and processing equipment announced the launch of Multi Outlet. This new system will optimize product flow and lower the risk of cross-contamination. Multi Outlet removes leakers and dirty eggs in the Multi drum before unsoiled eggs pass to the next roller section. This ensures that dirty eggs are removed as early in the process as possible. These eggs are returned to be re-washed by means of a conveyor leading back to the accumulator. The eggs follow a short loop, even with high-capacity machines, and the movement of leaking and dirty eggs is confined to a limited area of the installation. Product flow is optimized and the risk of cross contamination is significantly reduced.

The Multi Outlet ensures that:

  • Eggs from the egg washer are transported on a separate roller section and are subjected to automated camera inspection. Each egg is checked for leaks and dirt.

  • Leakers are rejected before they can come into contact with any other surface and are dropped into a bin and exit from the machine. Some machines are equipped with either an automated auger or pump system to collect soiled eggs.

  • Dirty eggs are removed by plastic flaps that have a gentle action. Unlike brushes, flaps that catch eggs, have a hygienic and easy-to-clean surface without crevices allowing bacteria to multiply.

  • Dirty eggs are transferred to a conveyor that can be connected to a re-wash return conveyor.

  • Clean eggs are then oriented with correct point setting for transfer to a dry roller section. Eggs are then transported to the downstream egg dryer, UV disinfection unit, crack detection unit and the grader.

  • At the end of the production shift, the whole section can be cleaned with a high-pressure water spray. An automated CIP system can also be used to clean and disinfect the two roller sections.

    The Multi Outlet system is now available on PX700 machines.

For further information contact:-

Bill Bretschneider - Product manager

T: +1 (248) 476 7100

E: info.usa@moba.net


 

WEEKLY COMMODITY REPORT

03/15/2019

The following quotations for the months as indicated were posted by the CME at 13H00 on Friday March 15th together with values for the reference months in parentheses. The market showed a rise in the futures prices of corn, soybeans and soybean meal for May delivery compared to the previous week.

COMMODITY

 

Corn (cents per bushel)

May 371 (363)

July 381

Soybeans (cents per bushel)

May 907 (910)

July 920

Soybean meal ($ per ton)

May 310 (307)

July 314

Changes in the price of corn, soybeans and soybean meal this past week were:-

COMMODITY CHANGE FROM PAST WEEK

Corn: May quotation up 8 cents per Bu          (+2.2percent)

Soybeans: May quotation up 3 cents per Bu   (+0.3 percent)

Soybean Meal: May quotation up $3 per ton   (+0.1 percent)

  • For each 10 cent per bushel change in corn:-

The cost of egg production would change by 0.45 cent per dozen

The cost of broiler production would change by 0.25 cent per pound live weight

  • For each $10 per ton change in the price of soybean meal:-

The cost of egg production would change by 0.40 cent per dozen

The cost of broiler production would change by 0.25 cent per pound live weight

COMMENTS

The market has now factored in decreased production in Brazil and Argentine.

There is increasing optimism concerning the outcome of the ongoing negotiations between China and the U.S. The extension of the March 31 st deadline to raise tariffs from ten percent to twenty-five percent on over $200 billion in annual imports from China is now a reality. In return China has agreed to purchase an unspecified quantity of agricultural commodities in addition to energy and heavy equipment from the U.S. to offset the negative balance of payments. The USDA announced on January 7th that orders have been placed for a total of 4.5 million tons to be shipped before September 2019. China has hinted at a six-year agreement to purchase soybeans mainly due to concern over continuity of supplies due to drought in Brazil. Negotiations are apparently in progress as denoted by shuttles between Beijing and Washington but without any disclosure of specifics. Markets are now cautiously responding to conflicting reports from the Administration but prices will be influenced subsequently by area planted and crop progress.

According to the March 8th 2018 WASDE Report #585, (the first issued after the December 24th 2018 Federal Shutdown), 81.7 million acres of corn will be harvested in 2019 to produce 14.42 Billion bushels. The soybean crop is projected to attain 4.54 Billion bushels from 88.1 million acres harvested. The levels of production for the two commodities are based on preliminary pre-planting projections of yield and acreage to be planted. Ending stocks were revised based on anticipated domestic use and exports.

See the WASDE posting summarizing the March 8th USDA-WASDE Report #586 under the STATISTICS tab documenting price projections and quantities of commodities to be produced, used and exported from the 2019 harvest.

Unless shipments of corn and soybeans to China resume in volume, as projected, the financial future for row-crop farmers appears bleak despite the release of two tranches amounting to $8 billion as “short-term” compensation for producers of commodities. Eligible soybean farmers received $1.61 per bushel. Corn farmers will not be placated by the promise of a year-round E-15 blend since the logistic problems of delivery to consumers and legal challenges will delay any positive price benefit. Oversupply of ethanol with the current 10 percent addition (read BTU dilution) mandate is evident from the March 15th spot price of $1.38 per gallon that has not changed materially in six weeks compared with a peak in late March 2018 at $1.60. Exports have been constrained by the retaliatory tariffs imposed by China on U.S. ethanol. Some refiners are reducing production and mothballing corn-fermentation plants. Corn farmers can be relieved that optimistic and unfounded projections of cellulosic ethanol after 2017 have not materialized based on technical complications and financial infeasibility.

The loss inflicted on farmers by the trade war with China is a gain for livestock producers who will benefit from lower feed costs. It must be recognized that the hog and poultry industries have experienced higher costs for more than a decade as a result of the RFS, a gift that keeps on giving. The mandate is a boon to Midwest politicians, corn growers and ethanol refiners at the expense of anyone in the U.S. who eats or uses any form of transport.


 

Updated USDA Projections for 2018 and 2019 U.S. Egg Production

03/15/2019

The USDA Economic Research Service issued an updated forecast of egg production on March 14th, following the previous February 14 th report, the first since the Federal shutdown. The volume of eggs produced and per capita consumption in 2019 were increased by 2.6 and 1.1 percent respectively compared to revised 2018 data. Consistent with this disparity, the benchmark New York price was reduced by 11.6 percent in unit value Production data reflecting 2016 and 2017 should be compared to 2015, impacted by the Spring outbreak of HPAI in the upper-Midwest. The latest data is reflected in the table below.

 

 

Parameter

2015

(actual)

2016

(actual)

2017

(actual)

2018 2019 Difference %

(actual) (forecast) 2018 to 2019

 

 

EGGS

       
 

Production (m. dozen)

6,938*

7,435

7,677

7,834 8,040 +1.7%

 

Consumption (eggs per capita)

255.8*

271.6

276.3

278.8 281.9 +1.1%

New York price (c/doz.)

182*

86

101

138 122 -11.6%

                   

Source: Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook -March14th 2019

*Impacted by Spring 2015 HPAI outbreaks. Consumption in 2014, 267 eggs per capita

Subscribers to EGG-NEWS are referred to the postings depicting weekly prices, volumes and trends and the monthly review of prices and related industry statistics.


 

Online Order and Delivery Reshaping Customer Loyalty

03/14/2019

A survey conducted by Raymond James suggest that online ordering platforms represent $18 billion in annual takeout-and-delivery in the U.S. Grubhub is the industry leader followed by Uber Eats and DoorDash.

The interposition of online ordering and delivery services between the preparer of food and customer is now influencing choice of restaurants. The question is now whether delivery platforms allow customers to choose their favorite restaurant or whether the ordering andfdelivery service is modifying loyalty.


 

Restaurant Performance Index Lower in January 2019 Compared to Previous Month

03/14/2019

The National Restaurant Association reported that the restaurant performance index declined from 101.6 in December to 101.2 in January. Most of the reduction was due to the Current Situation Index that dropped 1.1 percent to 100.7 in January 2019 compared to the previous month. The Expectation Index was higher by 0.3 percent to 101.7 in January.

Restaurant operators reported lower traffic in January that may be attributed to weather but also to the government shutdown. Lower income demographics who either directly rely on government salaries or are paid indirectly as contractors were obviously constraining family expenditure, including eating out.

Although restaurant operators appeared optimistic concerning sales growth in the proximal six-month period, there is general concern over expansion of the economy. Only 20 percent of the responding restaurant operators expected economic conditions to improve within the next six months with 15 percent anticipating a decline. More than half of restaurant operators will make capital expenditure for equipment, expansion or remodeling within six months, partly to reduce dependence on low-skilled labor that is becoming progressively more expensive.


 

PETA Protest Sourcing of Eggs from Mahard Egg Farm

03/14/2019

Following an intrusion of an Oklahoma facility owned and operated by Mahard Egg Farm in 2018, the animal right activist organization posted videos of alleged improper handling of hens during flock depletion. According to news reports, the supermarket chain suspended Mahard as a supplier but has since resumed sourcing eggs from the operation following a review. In a PETA press release, the organization stated "Kroger continues to sell eggs from Mahard and has refused an offer of joint visit to its supplier's farms to assess the animals living conditions."

A Kroger spokesperson said "In response to the adverse publicity, Mahard developed a detailed corrective action plan which included re-training of all their employees on proper animal care techniques."

Mahard passed the United Egg Producers audit and has taken appropriate steps to meet the Kroger requirements, and accordingly the chain is purchasing eggs from the operation.


 

Kemin Introduces Organic KEM GLO™

03/11/2019

Kemin Animal Nutrition and Health has introduced a certified organic form of  KEM GLO™ as a feed additive to supply red pigment.  The active ingredient is derived from organic paprika peppers and is standardized to yielded one gram of xanthophyll activity per pound of  commercial product.

 

The active ingredient is standardized after manufacture to ensure potency.  The product contains stabilized paprika extract and dried kelp.  If used as a single additive, KEM GLO™ will produce an orange yolk. Suggested use is in combination with Kemin Organic ORO GLO® to attain a desired level of pigmentation ranging from deep yellow to orange. Both KEM GLO™ and    ORO GLO™ are stabilized but should be used within 60 days of opening the 44-pound bags.

 

For further information contact Roger Myers at 515-240-5559 or roger.myers@kemin.com.  Further information is available on the company website www.kemin.com/carodenoids


 

Mea culpa Over USAPEEC Posting on Promotion in India

03/09/2019

Perhaps I was too hasty in commenting adversely on the recent promotional event organized by the USAPEEC and the AEB in India posted on Friday March 8th. The item elicited a response from Jim Sumner justifying the event. In fairness to Jim, a stalwart and tireless promoter of exporting U.S. poultry products the reasoning behind the program is presented in his own words.

"India is emerging as the fastest growing egg market, with consumption crossing over 88 billion in 2016 and 2017. The per capita consumption of eggs has increased from 30 eggs per annum to 69 eggs per annum in the last two decades. However, The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) recommends a minimum of 180 eggs per annum. Even after the significant increase in consumption, the Indian population is still more than 100 eggs below the annual recommendation.

The focus of these seminars was on processed eggs for the foodservice industry, and currently only five percent of eggs produced in India are processed. These seminars highlighted the use and functionality of processed U.S. eggs - dried whole egg powder was used for demonstration purposes at these seminars. The seminars also talked about the nutritional benefits of eggs. The increasing demand for processed egg products in QSR chains, large food retail chains, and bakeries (which need standardization and consistency), as well as in the pharmaceutical industry coupled with a limited domestic production the U.S. has potential to capture a significant market share in India with limited competition.

And again, their food service industry is certainly not accustomed to the high quality eggs available from countries such as the U.S. We feel that once exposed to our eggs, they will come to the realization that they can improve the level of their food service products".

I am indebted to Jim for the explanation and his wise counsel. The U.S. Industry receives a disproportionately high return from expenditure on promotion by the USAPEEC that produces benefits for producers in our Nation but also for the consumers in importing countries.


 

Midwest Poultry Federation Convention March 12-14th Minneapolis SPONSORS' BOOTH ASSIGNMENTS

03/08/2019

The following list of sponsors of EGG-NEWS and CHICK-NEWS and their

booth numbers are provided for guidance of attendees:-

SPONSOR

 

BOOTH

Alltech

144

Anitox

310

Aviagen

242

Big-Dutchman

422

Biomin

208

Chr. Hansen

128

Chore-Time

132

Hendrix Genetics

122

Henning Companies

222

Hy-Line International and North America

316

Kemin Industries

813

LiphaTech

726

Moba

922

Nutriad/Adisseo

445

O & T Farms

745

Orka

546

PMSI

411

Provimi Cargill


AEB and USAPEEC Promote Egg Products in Japan

03/08/2019

The AEB and USAPEEC cooperated to promote the functional benefits and versatility of U.S. egg products at the Bakery and Confectionary Exhibition held in Tokyo during late February. A local chef demonstrated the use of dried egg products in bakery applications. According to the March 1 st edition of AEB highlights 40,000 attended the exhibition generating interest in U.S. egg products. For the first 11 months of 2018, the U.S. exported 9,781 metric tons of egg products to Japan representing 33.6 percent of export volume and 40.5 percent of value at $41.2 million.


 

AEB Release Nielsen Figures on Egg Consumption

03/08/2019

The monthly review of egg sales confirmed that for 2018, per capita U.S. consumption will attain 278.8 eggs, +0.9 percent higher than 2017. The projection for 2019 is 279.8 eggs, a +0.4 percent increase over 2018. It is anticipated volume of retail shell egg sales suggests an increase of 1.6 percent over 2018 but with a 0.4 percent decline in dollar value.

In evaluating pack size, Nielsen calculated that during the week ending January 26th, 18-count packs were up 2.5 percent compared to the corresponding period in 2018. Costco and other club stores are promoting 24-count packs that would account for the obvious increase in this unit of purchase.

The AEB summation of Nielsen data indicates that for January 2019, conventional eggs represented 87.6 percent of market share with cage-free 10.3 percent and organic 2.2 percent. These figures suggest that a proportion of cage-free and even USDA Certified Organic are being downgraded given the proportion of hens in the organic and cage-free categories as reported in the monthly USDA cage-free data.

A 28 to 72 percent ratio for branded to private label retail eggs sales by volume was recorded during January 2019 corresponding to a ratio of 39 percent to 61 percent based on dollar value.


 

U.S. Soybean Crush Set Monthly Record

03/08/2019

The National Oilseed Processors Association reported in mid-February that 4.671million metric tons of soybeans were crushed in January representing a new record for the month compared to 4.439 million metric tons in January 2018. January output of soybean meal attained 3.63 million tons of soybean meal.


 

Lower Availability of DDGS

03/08/2019

The National Agricultural Statistics Service reports that output of DDGS during the first ten months of 2018 fell 12.1 percent to 3.515 million metric tons compared to the corresponding period in 2017. The lower availability of DDGS is attributed directly to a proportional decline in output of ethanol since DDGS is a byproduct of corn fermentation.

Exports of ethanol representing a surplus of availability over domestic requirements has fallen partly due to cessation of U.S. imports by China.

Demand for DDGS is determined by inclusion rates in hog and poultry diets as determined by unit values for energy and to a lesser extent by amino acids compared to alternative ingredients. Diminishing the quantity of feedstock diverted from feed to produce ethanol makes available more corn to livestock producers at a cost which is more competitive with DDGS as an ingredient to be incorporated into least-cost formulations.


 

Renewable Fuel Association Pressing for Year-Round E15

03/08/2019

The EPA has referred a proposal for year-round E15 to the Office and Management and Budget for review. Despite the haste with which the RFA proposal was reviewed by the EPA, the reality is that there is not the distribution infrastructure to allow for sale of more than standard E10 (10 percent dilution of gasoline with ethanol).

The ethanol industry hit the blend wall in 2017 with E10 and is having to export excess production. A number of ethanol refineries have been mothballed as denoted by a decline in the availability of DDGS. As we pass into the second quarter of 2019, economic realities are now shaping the future of the ethanol industry. There would be no ethanol production without mandates and the RFS.


 

FDA Issues Guidance on Protecting Food from Deliberate Attack

03/08/2019

In a release dated March 5th, 2019, Commissioner of the FDA, Dr. Scott Gottlieb noted that the U.S. has one of the safest food supplies in the world but it is recognized that foods can be vulnerable - "not just from unintended contamination, but from those who would do us harm."

In 2016 the FDA issued a rule outlining risk-based procedures to be adopted by food production facilities to protect from acts of intentional adulteration. Additional directives are contained in the document Mitigation Strategies to Protect Food against Intentional Adulteration: A Guidance for Industry. This revised draft guidance is issued in compliance with the Intentional Adulteration (IA) Rule incorporated in the Food Safety Modernization Act. Both domestic plants and foreign facilities that export to the U.S. must develop and implement food defense plans to assess potential vulnerability to acts of deliberate contamination.


 

H5N1 Outbreak in Denmark

03/08/2019

According to a posting on ProMED on March 4th, an organic egg-production flock comprising 7,000 hens near Terndrup was diagnosed with H5 avian influenza of low pathogenicity. The diagnosis was confirmed by PCR assay carried out by the Danish National Veterinary Institute.

The flock was depleted and a 1 km quarantine zone imposed. The origin of the infection is unknown but was most likely associated with migratory birds as the flock was not confined.

The previous diagnosis of H5 influenza in Denmark involved a flock of game birds in June 2018.


 

Sonic® Brunch Burger with Egg

03/08/2019

Sonic® Drive-In has introduced a brunch burger incorporating a pure beef patty topped with melted cheese, bacon and a fried egg.

Scott Uehlein, Vice president of Product Innovation and Development for Sonic® stated, "As traditional meal times continue to shift and change, brunch has taken on a life of its own, allowing the mixing, matching, and harmonizing of familiar flavors to create endless dishes." He added, "With our entire menu available all day long, guests are free to order breakfast anytime and our new Brunch Burger is the best of both worlds.

The Brunch Burger is available for a limited time at participating Sonic® Drive-Ins.

It is hoped that the trend towards "putting an egg on it" as promoted by the AEB will adopted by other QSRs and consequently boost egg consumption especially for Mediums.


 

AEB Promoted U.S. Eggs at Gulf Culinary Exhibition

03/08/2019

The 3-day Expo Culinaire in Sharjah, UAE, attracted nearly 5,000 chefs and foodservice industry

professionals. The AEB sponsored a Young Chef competition participants were required to submit

entries in two of three categories using U.S. eggs and products:

  • Poached eggs with Hollandaise sauce

  • Omelets

  • An Emirati dish incorporating eggs

Additionally, an AEB/USAPEEC booth at the expo featured egg demos by top Emirates Culinary Guild

Chefs.

A press release to Middle East media and a placement in Gulf Food Magazine emphasized the quality of U.S.

eggs and products


 

AEB Promoting Eggs and Products for School Meals.

03/08/2019

The AEB Eggs in Schools Program marked National School Breakfast Week (March 4-8)

with special promotions through E-news and social media, providing school nutrition directors menu ideas,

recipes and egg nutrition information.

Examples of innovative servings are illustrated:-

 

 

Pictured above:

  • Breakfast Pinwheels - Brantley County School

  • Breakfast Burrito - CCSD school

  • Scrambled Eggs - Sandusky City Schools

Breakfast Taco - Cypress Park HS


 

Projected USDA Budget Cuts

03/07/2019

The White House has informed the Secretary of Agriculture that reductions in spending will be required in the 2020 budget. It is noted that Congress rejected previous reductions. The President will have to rely once again on the agricultural community for support in his reelection campaign.

The obvious area to reduce USDA expenditures relates to the SNAP program and related entitlements. Previously the Administration proposed restrictions on eligibility for recipients that were excluded in the final bill.

On Wednesday 27th, Secretary of Agriculture Dr. Sonny Perdue was met with skepticism by Democratic member of the House who demanded proof that the Administration plan was workable. The majority noted that if SNAP benefits were reduced to more than 700,000 recipients, litigation would ensue since it was not the intent of Congress to implement the White House proposal to reduce benefits and modify eligibility.


 

Moba Introduces Forta Grader

03/07/2019

The Moba Forta egg grader will be introduced at the VIV Asia Exhibition held in Bangkok Thailand held from March 13th to 15th .

The Forta has a capacity of 100 cases per hour and incorporates the most advanced technology including the Moba individual egg-handling concept. Eggs are separated from the point of infeed to consumer pack. By avoiding contact between eggs, cracks are reduced and cross-contamination is prevented.

The Forta installation incorporates egg inspection, cracked and blood detection and machines can be configured to plant design and to product.


 

Moba Case Erector MCE 20

03/07/2019

Moba has introduced the MCE 20 case erector to be used in conjunction with the MR 12 case- packing robot. The new case erector will unfold a flat case and close the bottom with tape or glue. The automatic case erector can handle two different case sizes simultaneously and independently. Capacity is nine cases per minute from both case stores. The MCE 20 case erector can handle left and right-handed boxes and can change case sizes on one side without interrupting operation of the other side.


 

Installation of Omnia PX 700 in Mexico

03/07/2019

Moba has announced the completed installation of an Omnia PX 700 at a packing plant operated by El Calvario.

This company distributes 30,000 cases per day with 75 percent consumed in Southeast Mexico and the remainder in Mexico City. The PX 700 was delivered with two loaders for flexibility. The machine was installed by a service team based in Mexico supported by colleagues from Holland.


 

Kroger Reports on Q4 and FY 2018

03/07/2019

In a press release dated March 7th The Kroger Company (KR) announced results for the 4th Quarter and Fiscal 2018 ending February 2nd 2019.

The following table summarizes the results for the period compared with the values for the corresponding quarter of the previous fiscal year (Values expressed as $ x 1,000 except EPS)

4th Quarter Ending

Feb. 2nd 2019

Feb. 3rd 2018

Difference (%)

Sales:

$28,091,000

$31,031,000

-9.5

Gross profit:

$6,189,000

$6,791,000

-8.9

Operating income:

$391,000

$550,000

-28.9

Pre-tax Income

Net Income

$317,000

$259,000

$(104,000)1

$854,0002

+404.8

-66.7

Diluted earnings per share:

$0.32

$0.96

-66.7

Gross Margin (%)

22.0

21.9

+0.5

Operating Margin (%)

1.4

1.8

-22.1

Profit Margin (%)

0.9

neg

-

Long-term Debt:

$12,072,000

$12,029,000

+2.5

12 Months Trailing:

     

Return on Assets (%)

4.0

   

Return on Equity (%)

53.3

   

Operating Margin (%)

2.0

   

Profit Margin (%)

3.0

   

Total Assets

$38,118,000

$37,197,000

+2.5

Market Capitalization

$20,440,000

   

Notes:

1. $506 million pension adjustment 2. $957 million tax benefit.

For FY 2018 Kroger earned $3.08 billion on sales of $121.16 billion with an EPS of $3.80. This compares to $1.89 billion on sales of $122.62 billion with and EPS of $2.11

52-Week Range in Share Price: $22.85 to $32.74

Market Close on March 6th $28.44

Post-release noon March 7th $25.64 (down 9.9 percent)

Forward P/E 11.3 Beta 0.8

Same-store sales growth FY 2018 (excluding fuel) 1.8 percent

In commenting on results Rodney McMullen Chairman and CEO stated "Kroger solidly delivered on what we set out to do in 2018, which was an investment year that laid the groundwork for us to achieve our 2020 Restock Kroger targets including financials. We reached our FIFO operating profit goal and finished the year with sales and business momentum. We have a clear path to achieve $400 million in incremental FIFO operating profit growth and $6.5 billion in cumulative Restock cash flow by the end of 2020.

McMullen added "As America's grocer, Kroger has the winning combination of local presence plus a digital ecosystem enhanced by strategic partnerships enabling us to offer our customers anything, anytime, anywhere. We are transforming from grocer to growth company by deploying our assets to serve even more customers and create margin-rich alternative profit streams. We are well positioned to deliver on our Restock Kroger vision to serve America through food inspiration and uplift."

For FY 2019 growth in sales value was projected at 2.0 to 2.3 percent over FY 2018: EPS within the range of $2.15 to $2.25. The Company will invest between $3.0 to $3.2 in capital expenditure during FY 2019.


 

Starbucks Incorporating Egg-White Powder in Macchiato Beverages

03/07/2019

Starbucks is adding foam based on egg-white and milk in cold-served macchiato drinks. The innovation is an attempt to broaden the chain’s menu alternatives and to provide an alternative to calorie-rich sweet Frappuccinos that may be declining in popularity.

The selection of egg-white confirms the inherent functional qualities of the ingredient but will not appreciably move the consumption needle.


 

Senate Confirms Andrew Wheeler as EPA Administrator

03/07/2019

The Senate voted Thursday February 28th to confirm Andrew Wheeler as the Administrator of the EPA by a 52 to 47 vote largely along party lines. Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) and Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) were the only members of the Senate to vote against their parties.

Wheeler who served as Deputy Administrator took over the EPA following the 2018 resignation of Administration appointee Scott Pruitt.


 

Effectiveness of State of California ND Control Questioned

03/07/2019

According to a release by the California Department of Food and Agriculture, State Veterinarian Dr. Annette Jones issued an upgraded quarantine for the three county area affected by velogenic viscerotropic Newcastle disease (vvND). The order mandates reporting of sick birds and prohibits owners of poultry moving stock within Los Angeles County and also extends the quarantine to affected areas in San Bernardino and Riverside Counties.

On the surface this would appear to be a rational step but enforceability is questioned given that the birds affected by Newcastle disease are essentially game fowl (fighting cocks).

Readers are referred to the March 1st edition of www.EGG-NEWS which advocates extensive vaccination to create an immune population that should limit susceptibility of flocks and dissemination of virus.


 

Senator Grassley Calls for Recission of Tariffs

03/07/2019

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) recently commented on future challenges to the economy in an interview with Yahoo Finance.

It appears that a significant priority for Grassley will be to work across the aisle to ratify USMCA. Grassley noted, "The House will consider the deal first but I will need to work with democratic lawmakers on the three main areas of enforcement, environment and labor." Grassley noted that retaliatory tariffs are hurting farmers in his state and will discourage legislators in Canada or Mexico to ratify the deal. Grassley stated, "So whether it's Mexico or Canada or the U.S. all three countries are saying to the President of the U.S., you have to get rid of these tariffs and I am of the same opinion."


 

Is Amazon Realizing the Limitations of their Whole Foods Market Acquisition?

03/07/2019

The Wall Street Journal reports that Amazon is planning to establish a chain of grocery supermarkets independent of Whole Foods Market or the cashier-less Go convenience stores. Recognizing that Whole Foods Market does not compete directly with mainstream chains such as Kroger and Albertsons, Amazon appears intent on establishing a significant presence in retail grocery and has signed leases in urban locations. In all probability they will be eyeing small chains that could be upgraded with appropriate technology after acquisition.

Since the purchase of Whole Foods Market, Amazon has not apparently benefited from potential synergy derived from online sales tacked onto the high-end grocery concept. Amazon has failed to shuck the whole paycheck image and the promise to open new stores has withered.


 

Publix Honored for Customer Service

03/07/2019

A Newsweek Statista survey has ranked supermarket chains including other retail categories using a 20,000 sample of U.S. consumers. Retailers were ranked on quality of communications, technical competency, range of services, customer focus and accessibility. Publix was ranked first in the grocery category followed by ShopRite and Trader Joe's.

Publix, founded in 1930 is privately held and operates 1,200 stores across Virginia, Tennessee, the Carolina's, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia and Florida. Publix is the largest employee-owned company in the U.S. with 190,000 associates.

The bottom of the list included Target, Aldi and Stop 'n Shop with Walmart the least shopper- friendly according to the survey. Problems associated with the chains with lower scores included too few checkout lanes, long checkout lines, congested aisles, and poor food selection. Although Walmart was rated highly on competitive pricing, it was ranked low in 7 out of 12 categories including cleanliness, staff courtesy, checkout speed, produce and meat quality and local selection.


 

China Places Piecemeal Orders for Soybeans

03/05/2019

The Government of China has announced that an additional 10 million metric tons of U.S. soybeans will be imported in 2019 bringing the total to 16.5 million metric tons year-to-date. In 2017, prior to the imposition of tariffs soybean purchases amounted to 14 billion metric tons representing 31 percent of U.S. production and 60 percent of U.S. exports.

The American Soybean Association has lobbied for a successful resolution of trade talks with China with a specific request to rescind tariffs as part of the negotiated outcome.


 

New Position for Aidan Connolly

03/05/2019

After 25 years as a senior executive at Alltech Inc., Aidan Connolly has established AgritechCapital and has been appointed as CEO of Cainthus, a start-up in his native Ireland.

In early February, he published As Simple as 2-1-4-3 Plan Your Explosive Business Growth. This book addresses performance teams and achieving high targets.

In commenting on the book, Connolly noted that over twenty years using the 2-1-4-3 approach at Alltech and other companies the principles led to enhanced productivity and turnarounds and in some cases a doubling of top-line sales.

Aidan can be contacted at aconnolly@agritechcapital.com .


 

Secretary Perdue Praised Farmers and Encouraged Consumers to be Confident of Safety and Quality

03/05/2019

Speaking at the USDA Annual Outlook Forum, Secretary of Agriculture Dr. Sonny Perdue emphasized the connection between farmers and consumers. The theme of his address was Consumers Need the Truth, Don't Fear Your Food. Perdue stated "We need to help inform the non-farmer to understand that crop protection tools and technologies help to feed the World and will be needed more in the future."

In the unlikely event that resolution of the trade dispute is not achieved, and China declines to purchase soybeans and other agricultural commodities from the U.S., Perdue opined that supplementary payment to farmers to offset the impact of tariffs will not be repeated in 2019.


 

Target Reports on Q4 and FY 2018

03/05/2019

In a press release dated March 5th Target Corp (TGT) announced results for the 4th Quarter and Fiscal 2018 ending February 2 nd

The following table summarizes the results for the period compared with the values for the corresponding quarter of the previous fiscal year (Values expressed as $ x 1,000 except EPS)

4th Quarter Ending

Feb. 2nd 2018

Feb. 3rd 2017

Difference (%)

Revenue:

$22,977,000

$23,983,000

-4.2

Gross profit:

$6,077,000

$6,188,000

-1.8

Operating income:

$1,117,000

$1,129,000

-1.1

Net Income *

$799,000

$1,087,000

-26.5

Diluted earnings per share:

$1.52

$1.99

-23.7

Gross Margin (%)

26.5

25.8

+2.7

Operating Margin (%)

4.9

4.7

+4.3

Profit Margin (%)

3.5

4.5

-22.2

Long-term Debt:

$10,233,000

$11,117,000

-8.0

12 Months Trailing:

     

Return on Assets (%)

6.3

   

Return on Equity (%)

29.2

   

Operating Margin (%)

5.7

   

Profit Margin (%)

4.4

   

Total Assets

$41,290,000

$40,303,000

+2.5

Market Capitalization

$39,700,000

   

* Includes $216 million tax provision

For FY 2018 TGT earned $2.94 billion on sales of $75.36 billion with an EPS of $5.54. Comparable figures for FY 2018 were net earnings of $2.91 billion on sales of $72.71 billion with an EPS of $5.32.

52-Week Range in Share Price: $60.15 to $90.39

Market Close March 5th post pre-opening release $76.00 (+4.6percent)

Forward P/E 13.6 Beta 1.0

Same store sales growth for FY 2018 attained 3.2 percent with a growth in E-commerce of 36 percent.


In commenting on results Brian Cornell, chairman and CEO stated "We're very pleased with our fourth quarter performance, which capped off an outstanding year for Target. Thanks to the dedication of Target's team, we delivered our strongest traffic and comparable sales growth in well over a decade, and our 2018 Adjusted EPS set a new all-time record for the Company," He added "we have been driving an ambitious agenda to transform our Company, evolve with our guests and drive strong growth. On every count we've been successful, and as we enter 2019, we will continue to lead the industry by adapting, innovating and delivering more for our guests and shareholders."

Target provided EPS guidance for FY 2019 as a range of $5.75 to $6.05.


 

Eggland’s Best Teams with Life Time Fitness

03/04/2019

Eggland's Best a producer-owned cooperative marketing a locally-produced but nationally branded egg will serve as the official sponsor of the Life Time 60-Day Challenge. The objective is to inspire members to set and meet goals for health and fitness. A variety of awards recognizing wellbeing include a grand prize of $5,000.

Life Time has over two million members nationwide and operates a portfolio of family-friendly health club destinations and corporate health services.


 

Egg Nutrition Center Offers Prize for Egg Enthusiasts

03/04/2019

Egg Enthusiasts can submit a recipe and photograph of a modern egg brunch dish to be eligible for a prize. The winning recipe will be chosen by the Egg Nutrition Center and the American Egg Board and will be judged on creativity, nutrient profile and consumer appeal. Recipes and photos can be submitted to the Egg Nutrition Center at enc@eggnutritioncenter.org by March 15, 2019.


 

Compassion In World Farming Releases 2018 Survey on Welfare

03/02/2019

The Compassion In World Farming Report for 2018 was released on February 26th 2019. The objective of the organization is to encourage transparency from companies and to rank farm animal welfare. Apparently some investors follow the movement of companies within the list with possible implications for share price. The report unfortunately in some cases also provides an opportunity for activists to intimidate management and to coerce introduction of expensive and unnecessary changes without contributing to improved flock welfare.

In the latest ranking Perdue Farms and Cargill maintained their leadership position. Kraft Heinz and YUM! Brands moved up two tiers, and Chipotle, Dunkin' Brands and Publix each moved up one tier. According to the report, 54 percent of U.S. companies fall in the bottom two tiers mainly due to not documenting information on their farm animal welfare policies.

Rachel Dreskin, U.S. Executive Director of Compassion in World Farming stated "year on year, we are seeing many U.S. food companies increasing their disclosure on reporting farm animal welfare." She added "This year's Benchmark highlights that there is still significant work to be done for all companies to strengthen their policies."


 

E.U. Food Safety Agencies Focus on STEC

03/02/2019

Shiga toxin-producing E.coli (STEC) is emerging as a significant cause of foodborne infection. The Food Standards Agency of Scotland has recently declared STEC as an adulterant since many products are not cooked before consumption. Although E.coli 0157 is the predominant strain responsible for severe infection with hospitalization, other non-0157 STEC strains are responsible for foodborne outbreaks.

It is evident that there needs to be standardization of laboratory procedures to both detect and identify STEC strains coupled with databases which reflect outbreaks in various nations in which foods derived from common sources are consumed.


 

Egg Industry Center at Midwest Poultry Federation Convention

02/28/2019


 

USDA Revises Corn and Soybean Production for 2019

02/27/2019

USDA projects 2019-2020 season corn production at 14,890 billion bushels, up 3.3 percent from the 2018-2019 based on projections of planting and yield. The carryover of corn on September 1, 2020 will be 1,650 million bushels down 5.0 percent from the current forecast. This is attributed to lower beginning stocks and higher use of corn for feed and also exports. Diversion of corn to ethanol production will remain at 5,575 billion bushels or 37.4 percent of projected production, essentially the same as in 2018-2019.

The USDA projection for 2019-2020 soybean production is 4,175 billion bushels down 8 percent from the 4,504 million bushels in 2018. This is in part due to uncertainty over frayed relations with China that ceased importing soybeans mid-2018. Current bilateral talks between the nations suggest that the trade difficulties will be amicably resolved before planting so the relative acreage for corn and soybeans may well be adjusted upwards.

USDA may have incorporated a favorable outcome of talks with China in their projections that include a total supply of 5,105 million bushels, a 2,105 million bushels crush and exports of 2,025 million bushels, 8 percent up from the 2018 season. If exports eventuate, carryover on September 1, 2020 will be 845 million bushels, 7 percent lower than in 2019.


 

Sprouts Farmers Market Beats Street Estimates on Q4

02/27/2019

Sprouts Farmers Market, commonly regarded as a Whole Foods Market clone reported net income of $12.7 million for the fourth quarter ending December 30th on sales of $1.27 billion. EPS attained $0.19.

For the year, Sprouts reported a net profit of $158.5 million on revenue of $5.21 billion. The eleven percent increase in net sales during Q4 in 2018 was due to a 2.3 increase in same-store sales and strong performance in the 28 new stores opened. The company now has 330 locations in 19 states and plans on opening 30 stores in 2019.

In commenting on results Brad Lukow, interim co-CEO and CFO stated, "Through our solid operating cash flows, we continue to self-fund our store unit growth and strategic initiatives, in keeping with our capital structure strategy."


 

Frozen Food Sales Exceeded $55 Billion in 2018

02/26/2019

According to a release from the American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI), 2018 sales of frozen food attained $57 billion with an approximately 2.5 percent growth in both value and units sold.

Surveys have shown that consumers select frozen foods on the basis of convenience but taste, quality and variety are emerging attributes. Entrees represented 17 percent of value purchased followed by soups and side dishes at 10 percent, appetizers and snacks at 6 percent and breakfast dishes at 6 percent.

Alison Bodor, President of the AFFI stated "The frozen food aisle is in the midst of a strong comeback." She added "While sales numbers can tell us a lot about the size and strength of the frozen food category, we joined forces with the Food Marketing Institute to understand the consumption, shopping and use of frozen food."


 

Adoption of Drought-Tolerant Corn

02/26/2019

Drought-tolerant corn which was developed using conventional breeding and available in 2011 together with genetically engineered cultivars introduced in 2013 are gaining favor in the western edge of the Corn Belt. It is estimated that 22 percent of U.S. corn planted in 2016 included drought-tolerant genes. Within this category, genetically engineered cultivars predominate since they are also herbicide and insect resistant.

Farmers are employing no-till and conservation-till in conjunction with planting drought-resistant seed to optimize yields.


 

NSF Global Animal Wellness Standard Launched at 2019 IPPE

02/26/2019

NSF established in 1944 with operations in 175 nations launched the Global Animal Wellness Standard at the 2019 IPPE. The NSF has an affiliation with the World Health Organization and the Pan American Health Organization and is a Collaborating Center on Food Safety, Water Quality and Indoor Environment.

NSF Global Animal Wellness Standards comprise criteria to verify management systems for beef and dairy cattle, poultry and hogs that promote health, productivity and safety. Topics included in the program include:

  • Health and safety

  • Design and maintenance of housing and equipment

  • Provision of feed and water in consistency with the Five Freedoms

  • Management procedures promoting welfare

The Global Animal Wellness Standards have three tiers including a baseline entry level, a second tier assurance to support marketing programs and the highest level involving certification of compliance. For additional information on the NSF Global Animal Wellness Standards, access www.nsf.org.


 

Comparison of GHG Production From Beef and Cultured Meat

02/26/2019

A research group at the Oxford Martin School determined that cultured meat is not appreciably more beneficial to the environment than conventional beef production. Various studies in the past have converted methane and nitrous oxide emissions by cattle to a carbon dioxide equivalent that is now considered to be unrealistic.

Although more potent than carbon dioxide, both methane and nitrous oxide have relatively shorter lifetimes (12 and 100 years respectively) compared to carbon dioxide which persists in the atmosphere. The potential warming impact of the three gasses from both beef and cell culture were compared in a projection extending through 1,000 years. Under continuous high consumption, cultured meat generates less warming than cattle over the intermediate term. As methane and nitrous oxide do not accumulate to the extent of carbon dioxide, the effect is less pronounced than with cell culture, which generates carbon dioxide.

The research study published in Frontiers in Sustainable Food Systems concluded that cultured meat is not essentially superior to production of beef from cattle, negating the claimed environmental benefits from cultured meat.


 

European Food Safety Agency Evaluates Salmonella in Egg Production

02/26/2019

An upsurge in salmonellosis after 2014 resulted in evaluation of Salmonella infection attributed to various serovars by the European Food Safety Agency. A select panel convened for the review confirmed that Salmonella Enteritidis, S. Typhimurium and S. Infantis should remain "target serovars" in primary breeding and multiplication of chickens. The panel suggested that S. Virchow and S. Hadar could be replaced by S. Kentucky and S. Heidelberg as serovars of food-safety significance. Of these serovars, only Salmonella Enteritidis is considered to be vertically transmitted through the egg by both transovarial and transoviductal routes.

The panel determined that incidence rates in the E.U. could be lowered by concentrating on the serovars of significance.

The high prevalence of salmonellosis attributed to eggs in the E.U. is in all probability due to the fact that unlike in the U.S., eggs marketed in the E.U. are neither washed nor refrigerated. This means that any contamination that occurs during oviposition or in the nest box is not removed and may penetrate the shell and proliferate during storage and transport.

The panel concluded that a lower incidence of salmonellosis was associated with non-caged flocks compared to hens that are confined. This conclusion runs counter to considerations of the mode of transmission of Salmonella and persistence in the environment. This may be a spurious conclusion based on previous studies in Italy and the recent introduction of contaminated eggs from Poland. The SE situation was tolerated by regulatory authorities in that nation over a number of years resulting in continuous dissemination of infection through a number of packing plants to consumers in Western Europe.

Results of the panel review could be interpreted as indicating the need for effective decontamination of shells and post-pack refrigeration which are not mandated practices in the E.U. There is no parallel in the U.S. where compliance with EQAPs and the FDA Final Rule on reduction of Salmonella are enforced. The U.K. operates an effective EQAP under the Lion certification program.


 

Newcastle Disease Outbreaks in Game Fowl in Mexico

02/26/2019

A Friday 15th posting on ProMED confirms that authorities in Mexico have reported to the OIE a series of four outbreaks of velogenic viscerotropic Newcastle Disease (vvND = END) in game fowl (fighting cocks) in Guanajuato, Jalisco and Chiapas states. Individual flocks were apparently depleted and quarantines have been imposed. An epidemiologic investigation is in progress.

It is noted that vvND is endemic in many states in Mexico and clinical outbreaks may be attributed to a failure to administer vaccines that are generally effective in suppressing clinical signs of infection.

The presence of vvND in game fowl in Mexico in all probability has a common relationship to ongoing outbreaks in Southern California. Accordingly operators of commercial flocks should regard all employees and visitors as having attended a cock-fight the previous night and impose appropriate structural and operational biosecurity precautions.


 

Eggs balance at the equator.

02/25/2019

In a park near Quito Ecuador a monument located on the equator celebrates the fact that it is possible to balance an egg on the head of a nail (just)


 

Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Receives Donation from Jamesway and USPOULTRY

02/25/2019

Jamesway Incubator Company in conjunction with the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association presented a $2,000 check to Melisa Morrow, development officer for Children's Healthcare of Atlanta Foundation. The donation was matched by USPOULTRY and John Prestage of Prestage Farms.

The donation was the tenth consecutive year in which Jamesway Incubator Company has supported Children's Healthcare of Atlanta. Denis Kan, president of Jamesway Incubator Company stated, "Support for Children's Healthcare of Atlanta is a longstanding tradition with Jamesway, and we are happy to support this fantastic organization again this year". Melisa Morrow stated, "Children's Healthcare of Atlanta is reliant on donors like Jamesway and USPOULTRY to accomplish its mission of making kids better today and healthier tomorrow through philanthropic contributions."


 

WTO Concerned over Global Trade Decline

02/25/2019

The World Trade Organization Quarterly Outlook Indicator dropped from 98.6 in November to 96.3 in February, the lowest reading since March 2010.

The lower value is consistent with a warning issued in September that global trade growth would slow in 2019 based on international trade tensions and other economic issues.

The WTO Quarterly Outlook Indicator is based on a combination of trade volume during the previous quarter, export orders, airfreight and container-port throughput and agricultural products. Despite port throughput remaining high, downturns in airfreight, export orders, automobiles, and agricultural raw materials contributed to the decline in the index.


 

U.K. Government Grapples with Post Brexit Tariffs

02/25/2019

With the imminent departure from the E.U., industry and agricultural groups in the U.K. are clamoring for imposition of tariffs to protect local production.

Michael Gove, the Environmental Secretary has pledged to apply tariffs on food imports to protect U.K. farmers. Responding to an appeal by the National Farmers Union (equivalent to the U.S. Farm Bureau Federation) he stated, "Your concerns have absolutely been heard and it will not be the case that we will have zero-rate tariffs on food products." Across the industrial spectrum, manufacturers are concerned over tariff-free imports from from China.

During February, Honda announced that it would close it sole U.K. manufacturing assembly plant resulting in extensive job losses. The action by this Japanese manufacturer is the first in an anticipated stream of declarations by multinational companies concerned over their U.K. plants becoming noncompetitive in the EU due to tariffs.

There is now a realization that the U.K. is not going to receive preferential treatment from the EU and further negotiations will not soften the blow to the economy of the nation. Voters who narrowly passed the referendum in 2017 are now becoming aware of the implications of Brexit and that pre-election rhetoric understated the detrimental effects of a withdrawal. The Labor Party in opposition to the Conservative-led coalition in Parliament has recently hinted at a second referendum to reconsider leaving the EU.


 

Unintended Consequences in Trade Disputes

02/25/2019

Two Chinese companies, in all probability with extensive government investment, have committed to erecting chemical plants in Louisiana with a capital value of $3.1 billion. Due to the imposition of tariffs by both the U.S. and China, the companies concerned will have to pay tariffs on imported steel to erect their plants and will face tariffs on export of chemicals from the U.S. to China.

If the Administration places higher tariffs on automobiles from the E.U., both Daimler-Benz and BMW will be adversely affected. Both companies operate manufacturing and assembly plants in the U.S. exporting vehicles, especially SUVs, to many countries including China where they will be subject to tax. By the same token, steel and aluminum used in manufacture has escalated in price again placing these companies at a disadvantage.

Tariffs are an indirect tax on consumers and their use in trade negotiations only results in mutually destructive retaliation with adverse effects on agriculture and industry.


 












































































































































































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