Cramer Livestock Expo
The fourth installment of the Cramer Crop Livestock Expo will be held February 20th, 2014 at Kinetic Exhibition Park in Swift Current. The show continues to grow each year and will once again feature a Trade Show along with the various Cramer Cup series, hog carcass – forage – egg – canola – baking competitions.
For more information or details contact Lisa Doyle at 403.244.7821 or email:
Alberta Pork Hosts Meetings
Alberta Pork is holding a series of information sessions throughout the province during the first quarter of 2014.
All meetings take place from 9:30 am – noon. Space is limited so please contact Marlyn Dalmacio at the Alberta Pork office to confirm attendance at 780.491.3525.
February 18th – Lakeview Hotel Ft. Saskatchewan; February 19th – Coast Hotel Lethbridge; February 20th – Holiday Inn Red Deer; March 18th – Coast Hotel Lethbridge; March 19th – Holiday Inn Red Deer and March 20th – Sandman Hotel Grande Prairie.
A leading expert on PED will discuss some key topics..
There will be a question period as well. •
London Swine Conference
The London Swine Conference will take place March 26 & 27, 2014 at the Hilton hotel in downtown London.
Registration deadline is March 14 and no at the door registrations allowed.
Details on the program are on line at or call 519.873.4077  •
World Pork Expo
World Pork Expo will be held in Des Moines IA the first week of June. June 4 – 6th, 2014.
Details and information can be located on their website  •
APC Industry Award Nominations
Now is the time to send in your nominations for the Alberta Pork Congress Industry Awards.
Lifetime Achievement Award (honours individuals who have played an integral role in advancing the pork industry in Alberta and celebrates their long-term commitment and unwavering dedication to the industry).
Farm Team Award (recognizes the farm unit which operates in an exemplary manor through commitment and longevity of the staff with virtues of hard work and cooperation, celebrating dedication of the team toward working together for the success of the farm).
Pork Industry Leadership Award (honours individuals whose efforts reflect a commitment above and beyond the accepted expectation of the pork industry in Alberta. It recognizes individuals whose actions have become a valuable asset to the pork industry and acknowledge those whose actions have become models for peer recognition).
For more information or to nominate either a individual- team, please contact the Alberta Pork Congress office at 403.244.7821 Toll Free: 1.800.267.9180 or email:  Deadline for nominations is March 31st.  •
Manitoba Pork AGM
Manitoba Pork will be holding its Annual General Meeting Wednesday, April 9 at the Fairmont Winnipeg. The meeting is open to everyone to attend so the public can find out what Manitoba Pork has been up to over the past year.
Featured keynote speaker is Dr. Janeen Salak-Johnson, Associate Professor from the Department of Animal Sciences, University of Illinois.
An election will take place during the AGM for the position of Director-at-Large for a two-year term. Nominations will be accepted from individual producers eligible to hold the office and may be made verbally or in writing to the returning officer prior to the election.
For more information on the election process, including position responsibilities and election eligibility requirements contact Mike Teillet, returning officer, at 204.235.2309.
Also presented during the AGM is the MPC Pork Industry Awards. Manitoba Pork is seeking nominations for its annual Pork Industry Awards. The awards recognize producers and industry partners who have made contributions in any aspect of the Manitoba pork industry, including animal care, environment, production and promotion.
If you know someone who deserves special recognition, let us know! Deadline for nominations is March 12. Contact Laura Kunzelman, communications specialist, at 204.235.2303 for more information.
Plan to attend the annual industry reception and banquet; reserved tickets are required.
For more information or details please contact Manitoba Pork at 204.237.7447 or toll free 1.888.893.7447  •
Alberta Pork Congress
 The 40th annual Alberta Pork Congress will be held at the Westerner Park in Red Deer, Alberta, from June 10 – 12, 2014.
Trades Show applications are being accepted via fax and online booth selection  is now open. Booths are 60% sold out.
Mark your calendars as the dates have changed. More details will be available in the upcoming issues.
For more information please visit our website; or contact Lisa Doyle at 403.244.7821 or via email: •
3rd Annual Bruce Winkler Memorial Silent Auction
Held in conjunction with the Alberta Pork Congress is the third annual Bruce Winkler Memorial Silent Auction. As in past years all proceeds will be donated to the Alberta Cancer Foundation, specifically the Linac MR Machine.
The BWMSA will be open during the Swine & Cheese on Tuesday June 10th, throughout the day on the trade show floor June 11th and some items will be moved over to the banquet and awards.
Auction items are encouraged and appreciated. Contact Laurie Brandly Auction Chair to have your donation picked up. PH: 780.986.0962 or E:  •
Pork Exports Get $15-Million Boost
Pork producer organizations have been quick to thank Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz for $15 million to boost exports.
 Agriculture Canada said in a news release that “this investment will help Canadian producers to better compete abroad, and increase demand for their high-quality pork products.
“Existing markets such as Japan, and new markets such as the European Union (EU) and South America, will be targeted through the development of printed and in-store promotional products.
Canada Pork International, which is supported by money from pork producers and meat packers, “will also undertake international missions and conduct market research to increase Canada’s brand presence and improve industry-to-industry trade relationships,” the news release said.
Edouard Asnong, chairman of Canada Pork International, said in its news release that “this contribution will be of great assistance as it now enables our association and its members to develop and implement a five-year strategy, primarily aimed at differentiating our products from our competitors.”
More than 60 per cent of Canada’s hogs and pork is exported “but we need to be fully recognized as a reliable supplier of high quality pork products if our industry is to fully benefit in the future,” Asong said.
In 2012, Canada exported 1.2 million tonnes of pork worth $3.2 billion to more than 100 countries.
For the first ten months of 2013 exports were 980,000 tonnes worth $2.6 billion.  •
 — By Jim Romahn
New US Farm Bill
A committee of politicians from the House and Senate have agreed on a new five-year Farm Bill for the United States.
They are, however, facing a strong lobbying campaign from ranchers, hog producers and meat packers because the bill does not include a clause to scrap current regulations for Country-of-Origin Labeling (COOL). Canadians and Mexicans also want COOL scrapped.
Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz and Trade Minister Ed Fast said “Our government continues to stand with our industry, and we remain steadfast in taking whatever steps may be necessary, including retaliation, to achieve a fair resolution.”
The bill features an $8-billion cut in food stamp subsidies and increased crop insurance to replace direct crop subsidies which went mainly to cotton, corn and rice.
The Republicans in the House sought a $39-billion cut in food stamps back in September. This cut is one per cent from the current level of food-stamp funding.
At $500 billion, this Farm Bill is $24 billion lower than it would have cost to continue extending the current Farm Bill which was supposed to end more than a year ago, but was extended when politicians failed to negotiate a compromise.
This committee agreement still needs approval from the full House and the Senate; that should be done by the end of next week. Then it will go to President Obama who is likely to sign it. If he doesn’t, it will need a two-thirds majority of politicians to over-ride Obama.
“We are so close to having a new bill that we need to concentrate on getting it done,” said Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin, a Democrat who is a member of the farm bill conference committee. “This is basically a sound, balanced, bipartisan bill.”
Nonetheless the vehemence of the anger expressed by major beef, pork, and poultry lobbies left the House Republican leadership edgy, reported Politico, an on-line news outlet.
 “There’s a lot of froth,” said one aide, and much of that anger was aimed at Senate Agriculture Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow, a Democrat from Michigan.
“We’re opposed to the bill and Debbie Stabenow is to blame. She’s the one who said no,” said Colin Woodall, a vice president for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.
When a reporter suggested the cattlemen would be “breaking [Lucas’] heart” if it took down the farm bill, Woodall didn’t back away. “We’re going to work it hard,” he said.
The NCBF, the American Meat Institute and several poultry and pork lobbies sent a letter to politicians warning they will “actively oppose” final passage if their issues are not addressed.  •
— By Jim Romahn
Upcoming WTO COOL Hearing 
The World Trade Organization has set Feb. 18 and 19 in Geneva for hearings into Canada’s complaints about the new set of Country-of-Origin labeling (COOL) regulations adopted by the United States late last year.
The WTO ruled that an earlier set of U.S. COOL regulations amounted to an illegal trade barrier to cattle and hogs from Canada and Mexico.
Canadians, Mexicans and U.S. meat packers say the new COOL regulations are even worse, meaning that U.S. buyers face more expensive requirements if they buy livestock born outside of the U.S.
That depresses the price of cattle and hogs in Canada and Mexico.
Canadian hog and cattle farmers have hired companies to determine how much COOL is costing them and the estimates under the previous regulations is more than $1.6 billion a year.
If the WTO rules in Canada’s favour, the U.S. will have an opportunity to change its regulations. If not, the WTO will likely give Canada permission to apply tariffs to U.S. goods.
There are political moves underway in the U.S. to scrap or change the COOL regulations. One is a move from Congress to deny the U.S. Department of Agriculture the money it needs to implement and enforce COOL.
Another initiative is to add a clause to the five-year Farm Bill that has been under negotiation for more than a year.  •
       — By Jim Romahn
U.S. Politicians Move to Starve COOL
The Republicans who control the House of Representatives have voted to starve the Obama administration of money to continue implementing Country-of-Origin Labeling (COOL) regulations for meat.
That could spell the end of regulations that have cost Canadian hog and cattle farmers more than $1.5 billion a year in depressed prices.
While the COOL regulations remain in effect, many U.S. meat packers either won’t buy Canadian livestock or discount the price they are willing to pay to offset costs involved in keeping track of the Canadian content throughout their processing and marketing systems.
Canadian Press says officials in Ottawa welcome the news form the Appropriations Committee of the House of Representatives, but will continue to press their case at the World Trade Organization (WTO).
The WTO ruled last year that the U.S. regulations amount to illegal discrimination against imports from Mexico and Canada, which filed complaints.
The U.S. responded with a new set of regulations which took effect late last year, but Canadians and Mexicans and U.S. meat packers all say the new regulations are worse than the previous ones.
There is also optimism that if and when the U.S. politicians finally adopt a new five-year Farm Bill, it will include a provision dropping COOL.  •
                                   — By Jim Romahn
South Korean Trade Talks are Tough
While Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz says the trade talks with South Korea are in high gear to come to a deal soon, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty is getting heat from his auto-industry constituents to nix the deal.
The auto industry is fiercely opposed to improving South Korean car-makers’ access to the Canadian market and Flaherty represents Oshawa and its auto-industry factories and assembly plants.
But Ritz knows that Canadian hog and beef farmers are impatient for a deal that promises to improve their fortunes.
A broad range of other farm commodity organizations and food-processing companies is anxious for a favourable deal to improve access to the South Korean markets.
The beef industry has been shut out of South Korea ever since an Alberta cow tested positive for Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE, or mad cow’s disease) in May of 2003.  •
       — By Jim Romahn
Alberta Signs Deal to Unlock Vast Ag Opportunities in India
In mid January Premier Alison Redford signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Sunday with the State of Meghalaya, India that will provide new opportunities for Alberta agricultural producers.
The MOU supports an immediate increase in the sale of livestock genetics from Alberta to Meghalaya and facilitates further trade and cooperation on food processing and safety and on products such as canola, pulses and agriculture machinery.
“This region of India has a population of more than 40 million – that’s more than Canada’s population – and it holds huge opportunities for Alberta agriculture producers. In particular, this means Alberta’s innovative and efficient pork producers will have new and exciting opportunities in India,”  states Redford
This MOU will allow a smooth flow of Alberta agrifood products to India, including, but not limited to, swine genetics.  It will also and create an agricultural working group which will meet on a regular basis to discuss further trade and cooperation on products such as canola, pulses, and agriculture machinery. The MOU signing comes on the first day of meetings of the trade mission to India led by Premier Alison Redford.
“Cooperation between the two Governments and their respective departments and agencies provides a great opportunity to work with the Indian Ministries of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Bureaus and agricultural and veterinary institutions. This will open the door for Alberta companies to meet with agriculture departments and provide more access for our province’s agricultural products,”adds Alfred Wahl, President, Polar Genetics Canada
A training session for frozen semen thawing and insemination was held recently at Nabha 100-sow government farm to use semen from the first successful tender won by Alberta Animal Consulting Group Ltd for 200 doses of Yorkshire boar semen valued at almost US$23,000.  Another shipment of 250 doses of Yorkshire and Duroc semen is expected to be delivered to Punjab from Alberta Swine Genetics Corp, based in Nisku  in March, pending import permit and payment.  The semen will go to Polar Genetics India Pvt. Ltd., whose two directors Avtar and Tarlochan Singh trained at ASCC and at a 2000 sow farm in Central Alberta.  These two directors and their partner Tajinder Singh will attend this Punjab semen thawing training again.
India represents a market of more than one billion people and is one of the world’s fastest growing economies.
With a growing middle class, and an increasing demand for healthy foods and alternative sources of animal proteins, India is a high priority market for Alberta’s agriculture sector. India is already Canada’s largest market for pulses (dry beans, chickpeas and lentils) as well as the world’s largest consumer and importer of pulses.  •
Exclusive Distribution of BioZinc 20X for Canada
Announced in early December Canadian livestock producers now have access to an innovative nutritional supplement designed to enhance feed performance through the unique slow release of zinc oxide.
Canadian Bio-Systems Inc. (CBS Inc.) received final registration approval for BioZinc 20X, for use with poultry, swine, cattle, sheep and equine. The product is manufactured by Agranco Corp. U.S.A. and CBS Inc. has secured exclusive distribution rights for Canada.
“This product is a proven performer in the U.S. that represents a new way to improve profitability for livestock operations,” says Mark Peters, CBS Inc. Manager of Sales and Marketing. “We are pleased to bring BioZinc 20X to Canadian livestock industries and add it to our stable of leading science-based nutritional products.”
Zinc oxide supplementation is a long-standing critical factor for optimal animal nutrition and performance, however maximizing absorption is a key challenge, says Rob Patterson, CBS Inc. Technical Services Manager.
The product is designed with an edible lipid-based matrix coating that masks the taste of zinc oxide and diminishes the possible interactivity of ingredients. This coating also maintains important dissolution characteristics that support the most effective release.  •
BI Announces Two Approvals
 Boehringer Ingelheim Canada Ltd. recently announced the approval for its latest innovation in Animal Health: Ingelvac® 3FLEX™ with the Ingelvac MycoFLEX® Headspace bottle (HSB), a simple and practical way to mix the three swine vaccines. Ingelvac CircoFLEX® and Ingelvac MycoFLEX® HSB are first mixed, and then combined with Ingelvac® PRRS MLV for their simultaneous application of 3 vaccines in 1 shot. This advantage of mixing allows producer to vaccinate against, three of the most economically important swine diseases: circovirus type 2 (PCV2), Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae and PRRS, plus gives producers the ability to reduce stress on both pigs and people while decreasing labor costs.
 Also recently announced was New Approval for Metacam® 20 mg/mL Solution for Injection in Pigs for Locomotor Disorders
 Boehringer Ingelheim’s market leading Animal Health medication Metacam® 20 mg/mL Solution for Injection, also known as Metacam 20 has obtained approval of a new swine claim  for reducing clinical signs of lameness and inflammation in pigs suffering from non-infectious locomotor disorders.
The marketing authorization was granted based on a study by G. M. Friton entitled, “Investigation on the clinical efficacy and safety of meloxicam (Metacam) in the treatment of non-infectious locomotor disorders in pigs.” The study results demonstrated that an intramuscular injection of meloxicam (Metacam®) administered at 0.4 mg/kg bodyweight is efficacious and safe for the treatment of non-infectious locomotor disorders in pigs which results in significant improvement in feed intake, behavior and clinical condition. Metacam® 20, with its exceptional safety profile provides a considerable contribution and value to the protection of performance, and well-being in pigs suffering from lameness.  •
ON Hog IndustryUrged to Step up Biosecurity
The Ontario hog and pork industry is being urged to step up biosecurity in an effort to contain Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus that has now been confirmed at five farms.
It became clear during a teleconference call that PED virus has been showing up on trucks and truckers returning from the United States for some time.
In the words of chief veterinarian Dr. Greg Douglas, environmental testing has revealed that “the pressure on Ontario has been getting stronger and stronger.”
Douglas said that’s why “the farmgate is so important for biosecurity.”
Dr. Marty Misener urged farmers to prepare for tight biosecurity on deadstock removal bins. The pickup truck should stay on one side of the bin and all farm traffic on the other, he said. There should be no cross-over traffic where the deadstock removal truck has been.
When one of about 350 people on the teleconference call said it’s going to be difficult to find a site for the bin that’s clear of overhead wires, Misener said farmers could consider on-farm composting.
He said that ought to be a high priority for funding from the federal and provincial governments.
Premier and Agriculture Minister Kathleen Wynne said $2 million is being provided to the Ontario Pork marketing board to step up biosecurity measures, including construction of truck-cleaning and washing facilities.
Misener and Douglas both stressed that farmers ensure that any trucks coming on their farms have been thoroughly cleaned, washed, disinfected and dried.
But that’s clearly going to be impossible right now because there simply aren’t enough facilities in the province.
The Ontario Swine Health Advisory Board, the Ontario Pork Industry Council, Ontario Pork, the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food, the Ontario Association of Swine Veterinarians and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency are all working on protocols to counter PED virus.
One of the high priorities is figuring out a protocol to deal with trucks at packing plants.
With the disease now on Ontario farms, and those hogs being moved to packers, there is a high risk of cross-contamination or that trucks that have carried diseased hogs will move to other hog farms.
Misener said OSHAB hopes to have a protocol for packing plants ready by the end of the week.
There was a report during the conference call that PED virus has shown up at a Quebec packing plant. Douglas said there has been excellent co-operation between Ontario and Quebec.
Misener also said there has been “fabulous” co-operation from the farmer in Middlesex County whose 500-sow herd was the first confirmed with PED virus.
That farmer alerted all of his neighbours, supply and service companies and pork-industry authorities.
Douglas agreed with a farmer who said it would be a good idea to have truckers coming to pick up pigs at the farm stay in their vehicle and for farm staff to deliver the pigs to the truck.
The aim is to ensure one-way traffic to reduce the risk of cross-contamination.
Misener agreed with another farmer who said he thoroughly washed and disinfected his on-farm delivery chute and sprinkled lime around the area once he learned that the truck that picked up sows at his farm earlier in the day tested positive for PED virus.
Douglas indicated that officials believe they know how the virus arrived at the Middlesex County farm and that it was via “the distribution system” and that environmental sampling has been done at the distribution center.
He confirmed that veterinarians have an obligation under Ontario law to report to his office any suspected outbreak of PED virus.
The province is picking up the tab for PED testing at the laboratory on the University of Guelph campus.  •
— By Jim Romahn
PED Reportable Disease in Alberta
Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea, or PED as it is widely known as, is a highly contagious viral disease of pigs.
“PED causes diarrhea in pigs of all ages, but is especially severe in young piglets, in fact there are high mortality rates in young piglets because of this disease,” says Dr. Gerald Hauer, Chief Provincial Veterinarian. “There is currently an outbreak of this disease in the United States, and more than a million young pigs have succumbed already.
PED has the potential of causing significant economic loss to individual producers and the industry as a whole. Because of the potential to cause severe economic losses in the province, the Chief Provincial Veterinarian has determined that this should be a reportable disease.
“As of January 20, 2014, all cases of suspect or known PED need to be reported to the Office of the Chief Provincial Veterinarian,” says Hauer. “Producer cooperation in reporting this disease will help my office assist the industry in trying to minimize the risk of the disease spreading and keep it from becoming widespread in Alberta.”
“If a case of PED is reported, my office will work with the effected producer to implement the disease control measures to minimize the risk of the disease spreading off the farm,” says Hauer. “We plan to work with local veterinarians to provide advice to producers on the best management practices and biosecurity measures that need to be put in place to do that.
“While we will not be quarantining nor placing movement restrictions on the farm, we will be working with the producer and the processor to make sure that healthy pigs from the affected farm can still go to market.”
Producers need to be aware of this disease and, if they see any pigs with diarrhea, they should contact their veterinarian. Not all cases of diarrhea in pigs or piglets are PED as there are many cause of diarrhea in pigs, but talking to a veterinarian and having laboratory testing done is essential to ensure that it is not PED.  •
A Efficient Natural Alternative 
This unique technology is coming from an experienced nutritionist and field people that care about herd health and economical farms production.
The new technology is a response to an urgent need of efficient alternative to harmful chemical, antibiotic, steroid or steroid like products that may affect human health. NatPhen International has created a way to utilize polyphenols from plant extract. The phenols from plant extract are molecules that help to improve animal health, economical performance and welfare. The new technology is combining more than 15 years of field study and is supported by sound and strong research from agricultural focused universities.
An added bonus of this new generation of product is they have a natural calming effect on your livestock that transcript by less stresses, less aggression, and no withdrawal period.  CFIA approved this multipurpose product which will benefit all species. In fact Agriculture Canada in Lennoxville, Quebec and McGill University are currently doing research in pork and dairy production units.
All manufactured in Canada and available in both liquid and dry format, these special supplements can be fed individually or by mass application. There are twenty plus different formulations that are species specific where the basic mechanism behind this technology is to directly influence the stress and inflammatory response of livestock and that translate by better economical performance.
NatPhen International is the specialist on the extraction, formulation, commercialization and education of the food chain on the importance and role of specific phenols that helps control oxidative stress and the inflammatory response for a better health.
NatPhen International is the synergy and experience of 3 agri-business minded people that bring solutions to produce healthy livestock.  •