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SAFE Work Manitoba Reminds Those Who Work with Manure of the Dangers Posed by Manure Gasses

Fri, 30 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 30, 2016

SAFE Work Manitoba is reminding those who work with livestock manure to always be aware of the potentially fatal risks associated with manure gasses.
The three main gasses associated with swine manure are hydrogen sulfide, methane and ammonia and each of those gases pose health threats to humans and livestock, especially at high concentrations.
Jeff Shaw, a prevention consultant with SAFE Work Manitoba, says hydrogen sulfide is the most dangerous and usually the least forgiving of the manure gases.

Clip-Jeff Shaw-Work Manitoba:
Always assume that these gasses are present when entering any tank or pit where manure is located and always maintain adequate ventilation in spaces where livestock are housed or livestock waste is stored, especially during the agitation process.
While working in livestock buildings monitor gas levels at all times and do not allow people to enter livestock buildings when agitation is occurring.
For those performing the work in those areas, ensure they are trained and equipped with the appropriate resources to do the job safely.
When entry into a confined space such as a storage tank or pit is necessary you want to make sure that air assessments have been taken, the worker is equipped with a self contained breathing apparatus and rescue plans and confined space procedures are in place.
It's important to never try to rescue someone who is unconscious in a manure confined space structure unless you have the proper personal protective equipment and training and overall ensure everyone on the farm is aware of manure gas hazards and know the areas on the farm where these gasses may linger.
Placing appropriate warning signage in these locations will help remind people these dangers do exist.

Shaw says hydrogen sulfide related fatalities typically occur when a person enters a confined space such as a manure pit or holding tank and when the victim doesn't return, another person will attempt rescue and also succumb to the toxic gas if they are not equipped with the proper equipment or procedures.
For more on the risks posed by manure gases visit safemanitoba.com/farms.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Research Suggests Space Allowance Requirements Could be Reduced for Nursery Pigs

Fri, 30 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 30, 2016

New research suggests space allowance requirements for newly weaned nursery pigs can be reduced without compromising their performance.
Scientists with the Prairie Swine Centre, the Western College of Veterinary Medicine and Newcastle University in partnership with Swine Innovation Porc are looking into how stocking densities influence the performance of newly weaned pigs.
The influence of six different space allowances on the growth, behavior and health of nursery pigs are being compared.
Dr. Yolande Seddon, an Assistant Professor of Swine Behaviour and Welfare in the Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences with the University of Saskatchewan's Western College of Veterinary Medicine, says the findings will help regulators set stocking density standards for nursery pigs.

Clip-Dr. Yolande Seddon-Western College of Veterinary Medicine:
Codes of Practice for the Care and Handling of Pigs has a requirement for space allowance for all stages of growing animals to be of a K-value of 0.0335.
It does provide for a short term decrease in space allowance at the end of the production phase but really what we are interested in is whether that K-value is appropriate for nursery pigs because a lot of the research to develop set space allowances for growing pigs was done on growing pigs closer to the 60 top 100 kilogram weight range.
We don't really know a lot about how nursery pigs cope at different space allowances or whether they can handle slightly tight space allowances without it adversely affecting their well being because they do prefer to overlie each other, especially when they are newly weaned.
So it is possible that we may be able to have a smaller space allowance at that stage of production.

Dr. Seddon says preliminary data shows there have been no real differences in growth rates or in average daily gains of the pigs in the nursery phase across the different density treatments.
Full results are expected by the end of 2017.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Influenza Becomes Increasingly Challenging

Thu, 29 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 29, 2016

A veterinary pathologist with the Western College of Veterinary Medicine says influenza has become an increasingly challenging infection to deal with within the swine herd.
The latest Canada-West Swine Health Intelligence Network report indicates western Canada's swine herd is generally healthy and strong but influenza remains present and is always a risk.
Dr. Susan Detmer, an Assistant Professor in Veterinary Pathology with the Western College of Veterinary Medicine, says influenza typically slows growth so animals must be fed long or sold at a smaller size.

Clip-Dr. Susan Detmer-Western College of Veterinary Medicine:
I've been watching the influenza strains in western Canada for around five years now and the biggest changes that that I've seen is we have these emerging strains that seem to be causing more respiratory illness within the nursery age group and we actually have had increased mortality within the nursery groups around four to five weeks of age and that has been actually quite dramatic on some farms with some strains of influenza.
We've had a new strain that emerged in 2013 in Manitoba.
It's had limited spread outside of Manitoba but it is causing a huge problem within Manitoba.
It's an Alpha which is like the classical H1N1 virus but it's picked up the N2 from the H3N2 virus so it's picked up enough changes that it's causing problems and the vaccines really don't work on it, especially the commercial vaccines so we've really been struggling with trying to control that virus.

Dr. Detmer notes the governments of Alberta and Saskatchewan have provided funding for surveillance research and, if producers talk to the veterinarian, they can get free PCR testing to determine what strain they have and a strategy can be developed to deal with the infection.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




KAP Consults with Farmers on Federal Carbon Emissions Price Plan

Thu, 29 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 29, 2016

Keystone Agricultural Producers is calling for a federal approach to climate change that will allow farmers to be part of the solution to global warming in a way that also benefits their farms.
To help address climate change, the Canadian government is planning to put a price on carbon emissions.
As part of its consultation with farmers Keystone Agricultural Producers has scheduled a webinar for Tuesday morning to discuss the government's carbon pricing plan and the role agriculture might play.
Sean Goertzen, KAP’s climate project coordinator, says a well designed carbon price could help farmers be part of the solution to climate change while benefitting their farms.

Clip-Sean Goertzen-Keystone Agricultural Producers:
Here at KAP, Keystone Ag Producers, we're just starting to talk to farmers about carbon pricing.
That's why I'm having a conference call next week.
First and foremost its for Manitoba farmers but anyone is welcome.
I'll be presenting my research to date and the aim is to share with Manitoba farmers how carbon pricing works and the cost and benefits it has brought to farmers in other provinces where they have already had it for years.
The aim is, how can we learn from farmers in other provinces so we can figure out how carbon pricing could work well for Manitoba farmers.
There seems to be wide ranging opinion on climate change and on carbon pricing.
Of course that's normal but what we want to address is that there's a lot of speculation out there and misinformation about what carbon pricing could mean for farms.
I've been doing research over the past several months and I've been talking to farmers that already deal with the carbon price in other provinces to see what their experiences have been.
My aim now is to reach out to farmers and present them with the facts so that we can work together and figure how carbon pricing could work well for Manitoba farmers.

For more information on carbon pricing or on participating in Tuesday's webinar, visit KAP.mb.ca for call Sean Goertzen at 204 990-7326.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Manitoba Winter Cereal Acre Numbers on Par with Last Year

Wed, 28 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 28, 2016

Manitoba Agriculture reports the number of acres of fall seeded cereal crops planted in the province this year has been about on par with that of last year.
Manitoba Agriculture released its weekly crop report Monday.
Pam de Rocquigny, a Provincial Cereal Crop Specialist with Manitoba Agriculture, says planting of the winter wheat and fall rye, the main winter cereal crops grown in Manitoba, started in that first week of September, right when we like to see acres start going in and, for the most part, producers that had planned on planting winter wheat or fall rye were able to get those acres in.

Clip-Pam de Rocquigny-Manitoba Agriculture:
We're probably going to see acres stable, at the same as last year in terms of both winter wheat and fall rye since both those crop types were seeded into generally good soil conditions, being good soil moisture and warm soil temperatures.
What we're hearing is they're emerging quite nicely right now.
There's been good germination and good stand establishment reported so far.
Some areas that did receive some heavier amounts of precipitation, they are reporting that they are seeing some impacts to stand establishment just due to really wet field conditions so we'll see how that impacts the winter wheat crop and fall rye crop as we go into the winter.
Typically we like to see winter wheat at that three leaf to a tiller stage.
That's kind of the best stage that we like to see the winter wheat going into our winters and I think we'll probably see that this year so that's good news.
Most crops are seeded into good stubble as well because we do need that snow catch and snow cover to protect the crowns from those cold temperatures that we often do get in the province over the winter.
I think we're setting up quite nicely and producers are doing all they can to get the crop as winter hardy as possible.

De Rocquigny says we've seen some good germination so far and some good stand establishment.
She says it's always great for our winter crops to establish well so they can survive our cold Manitoba winters.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Export Demand Key to Clearing Backlog of North American Pork

Wed, 28 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 28, 2016

The Director of Risk Management with h@ms Marketing Services says demand for pork in key markets like China, Japan and Mexico will play a key role in clearing a backlog of North American pork.
Although live hog prices have faced downward pressure over the past couple of weeks due to the seasonal increase in hog numbers and faster growth, wholesale pork prices have been slower to move.
Tyler Fulton, the Director of Risk Management with h@ms Marketing Services, says exports haven't performed quite as well as we would hope but there's generally a belief that North America is well positioned for the next six months or so.

Clip-Tyler Fulton-h@ms Marketing Services:
I think you could argue that North American pork is probably some of the most competitively priced pork in the world right now with the declines that we've seen.
But, of course, you need to be calculating that based on wholesale pork values, what's being traded, and that hasn't come down as quickly as what live hog values have.
Going forward we need to see exports continue to improve.
China has been a big destination for North American pork in terms of the percent growth over the last several months and we need to continue to see that as well as see our largest trading partners, Mexico and Japan, improve as well.
From a domestic standpoint things are somewhat stagnant.
There's heavy supplies of beef and very abundant supplies of chicken and turkey so the consumer has a lot to choose from right now.
Consequently that's part of the reason why we're struggling to be able to move the product and clear it except in export markets.

Fulton says, on the demand side, it would be fair to say that, given price concessions, we'll be able to move the quantities to clear the market but the question is, at what price?
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Be Aware of, Identify, Report Symptoms of Seneca Valley Virus

Tue, 27 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 27, 2016

The Canadian Pork Council is advising pork producers to be aware of and to report symptoms of Seneca Valley Virus to their Veterinarian so Foot and Mouth Disease can be ruled out.
Earlier this month 13 Canadian origin sows exported to the U.S. in 6 separate loads for slaughter were found at the packing plant to have vesicular lesions and 2 loads of sows were refused entry into the U.S. when vesicular lesions were identified at the port of entry.
Foreign animal disease tests ruled out Foot and Mouth Disease but Seneca Valley Virus was identified.
Dr. Egan Brockhoff, the Veterinary Counsel with the Canadian Pork Council, says, this is not the first time this infection has been identified but, because of its resemblance to Foot and Mouth Disease, Seneca Valley Virus is a concern.

Clip-Dr. Egan Brockhoff-Canadian Pork Council:
In this particular case these pigs were central Canadian origin pigs.
We have found cull sows and feeder pigs across Canada though, in separate occasions, with this clinical presentation before.
The origin of the virus is difficult to tell.
This virus is present and has been reported in many countries across the world for decades now.
Seneca A Virus is now considered the most likely cause of idiopathic vesicular disease.
Where these pigs have specifically got the virus from is unknown.
It's quite possible it's from the farm of origin but it's also possible they picked it up at the assembly yard or in an assembly yard before they were transported to the United States.

Dr. Brockhoff says, because of its resemblance to Foot and Mouth Disease, Seneca Valley Virus is very disruptive when identified at the packing plant so it's important for producers to be aware of its symptoms and to report any signs of those symptoms to their herd veterinarian so Food and Mouth Disease can be ruled out.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Prairie Livestock Expo Exhibitor Registration Now Open

Tue, 27 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 27, 2016

The Chair of Prairie Livestock Expo says this year's edition of the biennial event is expected to attract between one thousand and 15 hundred livestock producers.
Exhibitor registration for the 2016 edition of "Prairie Livestock Expo," slated for December 14 at the Victoria Inn Hotel & Convention Centre in Winnipeg, is now open.
The event, which is held every other year in Winnipeg, typically attracts between one thousand and 15 hundred visitors from the various livestock sectors in the province.
Andrew Dickson, the General Manager of Manitoba Pork and Chair of Prairie Livestock Expo says the event is designed as a chance to have a little bit of fun and learn something during the day.

Clip-Andrew Dickson-Prairie Livestock Expo:
Prairie Livestock Expo has grown out of the old Hog and Poultry Days that we used to have in Manitoba.
It's a one day exhibition put on by the service companies and industry associations where people involved in the livestock sector can come together and learn what's new in products and new techniques directly from the various companies.
They have exhibits and displays and so on and we have various presentations.
Topics are short, usually 20 minutes or so.
Some of them will be company products where the rep will be talking about, say a new drug or a new form of mechanical equipment that might be used in the barn or something that would be used outside.
We have people from the research community providing some of their latest findings in terms of animal nutrition or manure management, feed preparation, ration design and so on.

For more information on Prairie Livestock Expo, or to register, visit prairielivestockexpo.ca.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Typical Seasonal Increase in Hog Numbers Takes Toll on Live Hog Prices

Mon, 26 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 26, 2016

The Director of Risk Management with h@ms Marketing Services says the typical seasonal increase in hog numbers combined with faster growth rates is taking a toll on live hog prices.
Live hog prices have faced increasing downward pressure over the last couple of weeks.
Tyler Fulton, the Director of Risk Management with h@ms Marketing Services says, more than anything, we've got a heavy supply of hogs coming in, which is fairly typical at this time of year.

Clip-Tyler Fulton-h@ms Marketing Services:
We start to see larger numbers that follows the normal seasonal trend but also the other factors that come into play are fresh corn making its way into market hog rations that tend to spur faster growth and cooler temperatures that also contribute to faster growth.
The combination of those three things has supplied growing at a fairly quick pace which has put a lot of pressure on cash markets over the past two weeks or so.
As it sits right now we're approaching the lowest levels for the year so far but, what's kind of unique about this is that, packers in the United States are arguably still in an excellent position.
Their profit margins are very strong.
Pork price are high in terms of wholesale values but packers are benefitting from the fact that there's this heavy supply.
They don't really need to compete heavily for the live animals and that's resulted in really wide margins for them.

In terms of slaughter capacity, Fulton says we're still in good shape with the weekday slaughter generally being filled and the excess being added onto a Saturday kill, which where the excess is generally placed in the fall months.
He says, if the trend continues as is, we might see some weeks over the two months were hog numbers max out capacity, which would be troubling.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Research Shows Outlook of Farmers Influences Animal Health and Productivity

Mon, 26 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 26, 2016

An Adjunct Professor with the University of Iowa says research is showing the behavioral heath and well being of our farmers will have a direct impact on the health and well being of the animals they care for and their productivity.
"Psychosocial Health and Agriculture" will be among the topics discussed as part of the International One Welfare Conference which runs today, tomorrow and Wednesday in Winnipeg.
Dr. Michael Rosmann, an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Occupational and Environmental Health at the University of Iowa and a clinical psychologist, says a study of dairy workers and managers and cattle feedlot workers and managers published in 2011 by Swedish psychologists found a direct correlation between the well being of the workers and the animals.

Clip-Dr. Michael Rosmann-University of Iowa:
It was found that the behavioral well being, or the more optimal the behavioral health of the workers and managers was the more likely the animals were to have optimal performance in the feedlot and in the dairies.
For example, it was noticed that workers and managers who reported behavioral health problems also worked with animals that higher rates of mastitis in the dairy operations and higher numbers of veterinarian calls for both cows and the cattle in the feedlot.
A further finding was that the more workers felt they were important in the operation of the dairy or the feedlot, the more likely they were to feel behaviorally happy themselves.

Dr. Rosmann says that's one of the first demonstrations that human behavior influences animal and agricultural production.
For more on the "International One Welfare Conference" visit onewelfareconference.ca.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Farm And Food Care Saskatchewan Tour Brings Together Food Producers and Food Influencers

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 23, 2016

Food writers, bloggers and other food influencers had an opportunity to connect directly earlier this month with those responsible for providing the food they write about.
Farm and Food Care Saskatchewan hosted its annual "Food Influencer's Tour" earlier this month.
About 40 participants, including chefs, food consultants, dieticians, bloggers, TV personalities and writers from Canada and the U.S. that have a large social media following, a large TV viewing audience and have influence over large numbers of consumers as well as local food experts were invited to take part.
Adele Buettner, a Project Coordinator with Farm and Food Care Saskatchewan, says participants had the opportunity to connect directly with farmers, ranchers and food processors.

Clip-Adele Buettner-Farm and Food Care Saskatchewan:
The significance of having these food influencers on this tour, we know that the value is huge.
These individuals have an influence on a large following of our non farming community being our urban population as to what they may choose to put on their diet on a regular basis, what they may choose to put on their menu, what they may choose to put on their store shelves.
When we have food writers and bloggers and TV personalities and chefs that are not from the farm and are not from Saskatchewan who cast a large net to the non farming community we know it is very important to connect with them and to give them the opportunity to see first hand how food is grown, to talk directly with farmers and ranchers and ask questions to help them better understand how food gets on our tables.
In turn, we know from responses from our guests. they then once they have a better understanding can pass on that information to their clients and their followers.

Buettner says with less than two percent of people having that direct tie to the farm, this is very key ensuring we get accurate information out to our public.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Canadian Meat Council Hopeful CETA will Move Forward

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 23, 2016

Despite opposition to CETA, the Canadian Meat Council remains hopeful provisions that pertain to meat will move forward by next year.
Canada's Minister of Trade and the European Union's Chief of Trade are moving to ease concerns raised by EU member states over provisions of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement following protests calling for abandonment of the pending trade deal between Canada and the EU.
Ron Davidson, the Director of International Trade, Government and Media Relations with the Canadian Meat Council, says if the deal receives approval from the heads of government in the European Council in September, it could be signed in October and then it will go for ratification to the Parliaments in Canada and the European Union and, once ratified, the two will come to a decision on an implementation date.

Clip-Ron Davidson-Canadian Meat Council:
CETA could be implemented sometime in 2017 and I believe the Canadian government has given every signal that this country will move forward with CETA as quickly as the European process unfolds.
When the European Council receives approval to go and sign the agreement and then the European Parliament provides its approval, it is probably going to possible for the European Union to implement all of the provisions of the agreement which depend on the competency of the European Union as a group.
They may not be able to implement, at that time, the provisions which depend on member state competency, so they call it a mixed agreement.
Essentially, provided the Council approval and the Parliamentary approval occur in Europe, in excess of 90 percent of agreement which actually would be all of the factors which affect trade in meat products would be implemented on the implementation date.

Davidson acknowledges discussions aimed at resolving technical barriers to the export of Canadian meat are ongoing and, until those issues are resolved, Canada's meat processors could have access on paper but won't have commercially viable access.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Research Provides Insight into Effects of Stocking Density on Nursery Pig Performance

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 22, 2016

Research being conducted on behalf of Swine Innovation Pork is providing regulators insight into the effect of space allowance on the health and welfare of newly weaned nursery pigs.
As part of research being conducted in partnership with Swine Innovation Porc scientists with the Prairie Swine Centre, the Western College of Veterinary Medicine and Newcastle University are evaluating the effects of stocking density on the health and welfare and growth rates of newly weaned nursery pigs.
The study is looking at smaller groups of 10 pigs and larger groups of 40 pigs to assess the effects of stress over six different space allowances on performance, on their ability to cope with disease challenges and on behaviour in both controlled settings at the Prairie Swine Centre and in commercial settings.
Dr. Yolande Seddon, an Assistant Professor of Swine Behaviour and Welfare in the Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences with the University of Saskatchewan's Western College of Veterinary Medicine, says the study was prompted by changes in space allowance requirements under Canada's updated Pig Code of Practice.

Clip-Dr. Yolande Seddon-Western College of Veterinary Medicine:
We just have very preliminary data so far and this is from the Prairie Swine Centre trials.
Overall, looking at the growth rates of the pigs, there have been no real differences in the growth rate across the different density treatments.
Rather we have had some influences of season on the growth rate.
I think what might be most important is what the behaviour of the pigs are doing and also looking more in depth of how the immune response might be influenced by these stocking densities.
But, interesting enough, so far we haven't seen any influence of the different space allowances on the average daily gain on the pigs in the nursery phase.

Dr. Seddon says information gathered through the study will be used by the Code of Practice Committee to set requirements for how producers could provide for their pigs in the nursery phase.
Full results are expected by the end of 2017.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Saskatchewan Pork Producers Advised to Step Vigilance in Wake of Latest PED Reports in Manitoba

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 22, 2016

Pork producers in Saskatchewan are being encouraged to step up their vigilance in response to the latest reports of Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea in Manitoba.
Three new on farm cases of Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea were identified in Manitoba in May and over the past week the Office of Manitoba's Chief Veterinary Officer confirmed two new cases of the infection, including a sow operation and a finisher site in southeastern Manitoba.
Dr. Betty Althouse, Saskatchewan's Chief Veterinary Officer, says trucks and trailers that do contact slaughter plants or assembly yards in Manitoba may become contaminated with PED and extra efforts should be taken to make sure they are well cleaned and disinfected before they contact a Saskatchewan facility.

Clip-Dr. Betty Althouse-Saskatchewan Agriculture:
We're much more comfortable when the whole of the west is PED free.
It's a very integrated industry across the west, especially on the Prairies.
There's a lot of movement of pigs and people and transports between Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
Pigs go to slaughter in Manitoba at your federal plants there, all the cull sows pretty much from Saskatchewan move through Manitoba on their way to the U.S. so we do have a lot of animals move that way.
Certainly some weanlings move into Saskatchewan as well so the movement is occurring and, with the pig movement and the trailer movement, basically any movement of manure, there is a risk of picking up and spreading PED.
Any time there is PED in the neighboring province, it does pose an increased risk so we do have a heightened alert.
We sent a notice through both the Ministry and Sask Pork to producers just highlighting that the cases were there and to heighten that level of alert and be sure that cleaning and disinfection of trailers continues to be a high priority.

Dr. Althouse says the increased surveillance and heightened biosecurity in Saskatchewan have been successful and there have still been no clinical cases of Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea detected in Saskatchewan.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




CFIA Investigates Seneca Valley Virus Incident to Rule Out Foreign Animal Disease

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 21, 2016

The national Manager for the Canadian Food Inspection Agency's Foreign Animal Disease Program says the agency's investigation into an incident involving Seneca Valley Virus will continue until any risk of foreign animal disease has been ruled out.
In response to incidents last week where Canadian origin sows exported to the U.S. where found to have vesicular lesions the Canadian Food Inspection Agency launched a foreign animal disease investigations.
Dr. Amy Snow, the National Manager of the Foreign Animal Disease Program, part of the Animal Health Directorate of the CFIA, says on September 13 the USDA informed the CFIA that 13 sows of Canadian Origin exported to the U.S. for slaughter has vesicular lesions and two loads of sows were refused entry on September 14 when the same types of lesion were identified at the port of entry.

Clip-Dr. Amy Snow-Canadian Food Inspection Agency:
The USDA testing results were negative for any foreign animal diseases of concern that can present the same way as Seneca Valley Virus but Seneca Valley Virus was detected in some of the samples.
At this point in time the CFIA's own investigation to determine the movements of the implicated animals is ongoing.
The CFIA is not tracking SCV or Seneca Valley Virus directly.
The agency is responsible for responding to foreign animal diseases with similar clinical signs.
Seneca Valley Virus is not a reportable disease in Canada or the World Organization for Animal Health.
However, as the clinical signs and lesions of Seneca Valley Virus are identical to other diseases of concern, rapid investigation is absolutely imperative in every case.
Swine presenting with signs similar to foreign animal diseases of concern, for example Foot and Mouth Disease, must be treated as such until these diseases can be ruled out by the CFIA.

Dr. Snow says it's important for producers to report any suspicion of Seneca Valley Virus to their herd veterinarian and CFIA so that further investigation can pursued to ensure the rapid rule out of foreign animal diseases of concern.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Action Needed to Improve Behavioral Well Being of Farmers

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 21, 2016

An Adjunct Professor with the University of Iowa says action is needed to improve the behavioral well being of our farm population.
"Psychosocial Health and Agriculture" will be discussed next week as part of the International One Welfare Conference in Winnipeg.
Dr. Michael Rosmann, an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Occupational and Environmental Health at the University of Iowa and a clinical psychologist, says, while the behavioral health of agricultural people is becoming much better understood, understanding of its effect on animals and plants is at the beginning stages.

Clip-Dr. Michael Rosmann-University of Iowa:
We do know the behavioral health of agricultural producers is important to their production.
We also know depression and anxiety disorders are more common among people involved in agriculture.
We know also that successful people in agriculture exhibit conscientiousness, are attentive to their work, are somewhat risk taking but we're also fairly prone to behavioral maladies such as depression and suicide.
It's the suicide rate among farmers around the world that has brought a lot of attention the behavioral well being of the agricultural population.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a report in early July this year which indicated that farmers undertake suicide at a higher rate than any other occupation in the country.
We also know that suicide among farmers is higher than for the general population in almost every study that has been undertaken in Great Britain, Australia and Great Britain.

Dr. Rosmann says the precedent suggests a propensity for suicide that we need to understand better and about which something needs to be done.
For more or to register for the "International One Welfare Conference" visit onewelfareconference.ca.
For Farmscase.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Pork Producers Encouraged to Share Ideas for Selecting Pigs for Group Housing Based on Aggression

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 20, 2016

Pork Producers in Canada and the United States are being invited to share their experience in selecting pigs for group housing with a focus on reducing aggression.
As part of a project being conducted by Michigan State University to develop new tools to address aggression in group sow housing pork producers in the United States and Canada are being surveyed to learn how they use behavior in their on-farm management of pigs.
This survey is designed for all different types of farms, whether they have breeding sows or not and participants are asked about ease of handling of both breeding pigs and market hogs and any tools they use to minimize aggression, monitor potential issues like disease outbreaks or tail biting and things like that.
Dr. Sarah Ison, a post doctoral fellow in the Animal Science Department of MSU, says information gathered through the survey is being used to help develop tools based on behavior, genomic and genetic factors to select pigs for group housing based on aggression.

Clip-Dr. Sarah Ison-Michigan State University:
We've been working on a project funded by the USDA and the National Pork Board.
The aim of the project is to reduce production losses by identifying pigs that are best suited for group living.
This has come off the back of the increasing number of sows now housed in group sow housing as opposed to individual stalls.
The whole MSU project has been going for about two years now.
Actually all of the data that we're collecting for the research side of the project involving the pigs has all been collected.
For the survey, it's fairly flexible.
We hope to have some preliminary results to present at the beginning of December but really we want to maximize the results we're getting so we're happy to keep the survey open for as long as it takes to get enough results.

For more information on the survey or to participate visit msupigbehavior.questionpro.com.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Pork Producers Advised to Watch For and Avoid Shipping Pigs with Vesicular Lesions

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 20, 2016

The Canadian Pork Council is advising pork producers to be watching closely for symptoms of Seneca Valley Virus and avoid shipping any pigs with signs of the infection.
Last Tuesday the United States Department of Agriculture informed the Canadian Food Inspection Agency that 13 Canadian origin sows exported to the U.S. in 6 separate loads for slaughter had vesicular lesions and 2 loads of sows were refused entry into the U.S. the next day when vesicular lesions were identified at the port of entry triggering investigations in both countries.
Dr. Egan Brockhoff, the Veterinary Counsel with the Canadian Pork Council, says, while foreign animal disease tests ruled out Foot and Mouth Disease, Seneca Valley Virus was identified.

Clip-Dr. Egan Brockhoff-Canadian Pork Council:
The greatest concern is that this virus presents identically to Foot and Mouth Disease virus so it causes disruptions in hog transport, it causes disruptions in processing and it causes disruptions of shipments from farms to other various sites so we really need pork producers to pay very close attention to animals before they're getting shipped and moved to markets and certainly in particular their cull sows as well as their feeder pigs and nursery pigs.
Look for signs of lameness, look for signs of redness around the snout and around the mouth, pigs going off feed.
If we can prevent those pigs from getting loaded, then we can prevent these disruptions in market and transport and so on and so forth.
At this time we really want pork producers just to be aware of what the clinical signs are.
If they see anything suspicious, please contact their herd veterinarian and then the veterinarian, at that time, can make the determination whether they should bring in the CFIA immediately and get some testing done to determine if it's actually a foreign animal disease or just this disruptive Seneca Valley Virus.

Dr. Brockhoff says the prevalence of Seneca Valley Virus in Canada is not known but it has popped up sporadically since 2015.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Chief Veterinary Officer Launches Investigation into Manitoba's Latest Case of PED

Mon, 19 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 19, 2016

The Office of Manitoba's Chief Veterinary Officer has launched an investigation into the latest confirmed case of PED in Manitoba.
Last week Manitoba Agriculture confirmed a sow operation in southeastern Manitoba has been infected with Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea.
Dr. Megan Bergman, Manitoba's Chief Veterinary Officer says the farm has taken steps to contain the virus and eliminate it and efforts are underway to identify the source and minimize any risk of transmission.

Clip-Dr. Megan Bergman-Manitoba Agriculture:
Certainly we do a thorough investigation working very closely with the herd veterinarian as well as the farm owner to determine all movement on and off the farm, whether it be vehicles, people or animals so we can try to determine a possible source of entry and also eliminate any potential transmission risks that may exist.
We work very closely with both the farmer and the herd veterinarian and also the industry group.
They're very active in ensuring that other producers are notified that there is another case in the province so that everyone can ensure they're continuing to practice enhanced biosecurity practices.
Essentially we conduct testing of any animal facility that's been in contact with this particular farm to determine if there's been any transmission.
Then we monitor them 10 days later just to ensure that there's no presence of disease.
At this point there's been no linkages associated with any of the previously positive operations.
We're just in the process of tracking movement both on and off the farm.
We have followed up and are conducting testing on all farms that are linked with this particular farm just to ensure we don't have the virus in any other facility to see if we can rule out any possible sources from that particular avenue.
At this point it looks like this farm has an excellent biosecurity protocol and has been very stringent in their practices so, no smoking gun at this moment.

Dr. Bergman encourages all producers to consult with their herd veterinarians to make sure all the bases are being covered in terms of what's moving on and off the farm, minimizing risks and being conscious of where they travel to avoid bringing anything back to their farms.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Non-Traditional Stakeholders Expected to Play a Role in Next Agricultural Policy Framework

Mon, 19 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 19, 2016

The Research Lead with Agri-Food Economic Systems says the influence of non-traditional stakeholders will complicate discussions aimed at developing Canada's next Agricultural Policy Framework.
An Agri-Food Economic Systems Agri-Food Policy Note, released earlier this month, challenges governments and the agri-food sector to broaden discussions on the successor to Growing Forward-2, which expires in 2018.
Dr. Al Mussell, the Research Lead with Agri-Food Economic Systems, says the influence of non-traditional stakeholders, those who may not be part of the agri-food value chain but who have an interest in how food is produced, will make this round of discussions more challenging.

Clip-Dr. Al Mussell-Agri-Food Economic Systems:
Just in the last couple of years we've developed this term that has come into our language which is called social acceptance or social license of what we do in agriculture.
Some of what we do in food marketing targets some of these concerns and issues directly but we're going to have to find a way to engage that and that's a little bit of a different flavor than the past 3 of these types of 5 year agreements have had to deal with.
In a way it's already on the agenda because the federal minister has been given a mandate to develop a national food policy and, by nature, that's going to bring in a range of considerations, some from the traditional agricultural community but also opinions and ideas from others.
This is coming to have such a strong impact in ag and food marketing, understanding of agricultural technologies, acceptance of different types of agricultural technologies.
There is a role for policy to work collectively to figure out how it is we can do this and get a social understanding of how food is produced and now is the time to be working on that.

Dr. Mussell says getting the kind of dialogue that's seen as credible by farmers and these new stakeholders will be a challenge but it's one we have to take on.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




TPP and CETA Offer Tremendous Opportunity for Red Meat Sector

Fri, 16 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 16, 2016

The Canadian Meat Council says implementation of TPP and CETA will create tremendous opportunity for red meat producers and processors.
Canada is currently in the process of completing two key trade agreements, the 12 nation Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement with the EU.
Ron Davidson, the Director of International Trade, Government and Media Relations with the Canadian Meat Council, says these two deals offer tremdous opportunities for agriculture.

Clip-Ron Davidson-Canadian Meat Council:
In the case of TPP, it involves 11 other countries, some of who we already have trade agreements with but others that we don't.
For example we do not have free trade agreements with Japan which is a major market for over a billion dollars of Canadian meat, most of which is pork, every year.
Nor do we have trade agreements at this time with countries like Vietnam or Malaysia.
From that perspective it is very important for us to move forward with the TPP and see that agreement implemented.
It will not only improve our access into those other countries that we don't have trade agreements with but it will help us to catch up to countries such as Australia that already has an agreement with Japan.
It will also give us priority access to those markets over countries that don't have current access to Japan such as the European Union.
In the case of CETA we're talking about tariff free import quotas for 81,000 tonnes carcass weight of pork, for 65,000 tonnes of beef, for 3,000 tones of bison, so very significant.

Davidson says we require access to all of the markets out there so we can maximize the value of every carcass by finding the best market in the world that will pay the most for each carcass.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork




Presence of Mould Could Indicate Deoxynivalenol Contamination

Fri, 16 Sep 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Farmscape for September 16, 2016

A University of Saskatchewan Swine Nutritionist says, while harvested grain contaminated by low levels of  DON can be mixed down with clean grain to acceptable levels, heavily contaminated grain should not be fed to pigs.
As a result of abnormally high amounts of rainfall during the growing season, spring cereal crops throughout Manitoba and Saskatchewan are reported to have been infected by Fusarium Head Blight, a mould which produces Deoxynivalenol, or DON, a mycoxtin that can cause depressed feed intake, decreased growth and in extreme cases death.
Dr. Denise Beaulieu, an Assistant Professor in Monogastric Nutrition with the University of Saskatchewan, says extremely small levels of DON will have an impact.

Clip-Dr. Denise Beaulieu-University of Saskatchewan:
CFIA recommends for all classes of swine that we don't go above one part per million, that's one milligram per kilogram, in swine diets.
We have done research where, in different diets and this has been for weanling pigs, we have gone a little bit above that and not seen too strong an effect, or effects were not too negative on feed intake of the weanling pig.
However one of the issues with these mycotoxins is, because we're working with such small levels, one milligram per kilogram, is one part per million, it's hard to know exactly how much you have in your sample because it's relatively difficult to get a good analysis of it.
One milligram per kilogram provides us with a good safety factor.
If they do suspect or do find mycotoxins and they're at a relatively low level, the best would be to mix that contaminated grain with some grain that does not contain mycotoxins.
So you dilute out the mycotoxins down to an acceptable level.
If the concentrations are so high that they don't feel confident in using that method, then it would be best not to feed it at all.

Dr. Beaulieu says, while the presence of mould is evidence there could mycotoxins present, that isn't definite proof but the presence of moulds should be viewed as a warning sign.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.


       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork