NPPC fighting to preserve antibiotics use

Environmental groups, public-health groups and others opposed to the use of antibiotics in livestock production continue to push for tighter restrictions on the use of those products. 

The most recent development is a ruling by a federal judge in New York, who found that the FDA behaved in an “arbitrary and capricious” manner when it dismissed two citizens’ petitions that asked the agency to consider banning farmers from using antibiotics on livestock for non-therapeutic uses.

The FDA had rejected the two petitions – filed in 1999 and in 2005 – because of the time and expense to hold formal withdrawal proceedings.

The ruling adds fuel an intensifying legal war over the future use of antibiotics to promote animal growth, increase feed efficiency and disease prevention on food-producing livestock.

At a news conference during World Pork Expo in Des Moines last week, the chief veterinarian of the National Pork Producers Council, Dr. Liz Wagstrom, talked about what that ruling means.  She was joined by Michigan pork producer Bob Dykhuis, a member of the NPPC board who has also been very involved with the antibiotics issue. 

Dykhuis discussed the issues surrounding FDA’s Guidance 209 and Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) and talked about the changes that are coming to the pork industry as far as accessing and using antibiotics over the next three to five years.

AUDIO: NPPC news conference–Wagstrom, Dykhuis (13:14 MP3)


Combo vaccine offers benefits

The 3FLEX combination vaccine from Boehringer Ingelheim makes vaccinating against three of the most critical diseases in the swine industry a convenient, one-shot process.

3FLEX offers a combination package with Porcine Circovirus, Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae and Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS) vaccines that are USDA-approved for mixing and administering in one shot.

At World Pork Expo in Des Moines, we discussed the “one-and-done” 3FLEX vaccine with Dr. John Waddell of Boehringer Ingelheim.

 AUDIO: John Waddell (1:38 MP3)


President elect says pork industry looks bright

World Pork Expo provides pork producers the information they need to best manage their operations. National Pork Producers Council President Elect Randy Spronk says this year’s Pork Expo has plenty of information for producers utilize. As Spronk look ahead to the remainder of 2012 – he says things look pretty good for the pork industry.

NPPC monitoring farm bill activities

The National Pork Producers Council has a keen interest in the 2012 farm bill.  At a World Pork Expo news conference, one of the co-chairs of the NPPC’s farm bill task force, Sam Carney of Adair, Iowa, talked about items of importance to pork producers—including a catastrophic risk-management insurance program study, beginning farmer and rancher programs to allow better access to capital, and a reduction in the Conservation Reserve Program.

AUDIO: Sam Carney (3:49 MP3)


Cool technology to fight heat stress

According to Kim Boccardi, marketing & product manager for specialty ingredients with ADM Alliance Nutrition, ADM research has aggressively pursued natural, nutritional solutions to avoid the performance slump in swine caused by summer heat stress.

The result is Thermal Care, a combination of several nutritional additives, each with its own distinctive impact on heat stress.  Boccardi gave us the details during this World Pork Expo interview.

AUDIO: Kim Boccardi (1:31 MP3)


Pfizer stresses ‘individual pig care’

At the World Pork Expo trade show, we stopped by the Pfizer Animal Health booth and visited with Marty Frankhouser, marketing manager for strategic services, and Dr. Darrell Neuberger, pork technical services veterinarian.

Frankhouser gave us an update on Pfizer’s Individual Pig Care program, while Neuberger filled us in the new flexible dose label for Fostera PCV, Pfizer’s circovirus vaccine.

AUDIO: Marty Frankhouser (1:50 MP3)

AUDIO: Darrell Neuberger (2:06 MP3)

Darrell Neuberger

Marty Frankhouser

Circovirus ‘is still out there’

Porcine circovirus (PCV) became a serious problem in the U.S. about six years ago.  Thanks to effective vaccines, the disease has been brought under control, but as Dr. Brad Thacker, technical services veterinarian with Merck Animal Health reminds us in this World Pork Expo interview, circovirus “is still out there.”

AUDIO: Brad Thacker (2:32 MP3)



Pork exports still a bright spot

One of the real bright spots in the pork industry has been the continued strength in the pork export market.  During a World Pork Expo news conference, NPPC president R.C. Hunt, a pork producer from Wilson, North Carolina, gave us an update on current pork export challenges and opportunities.

AUDIO: R.C. Hunt (7:29 MP3)


‘Shining the light’ on pork production

As members of the general public drive through the country, they no doubt wonder what is taking place in those long, white buildings off in the distance.

The Nebraska Pork Producers Association (NPPA) has found a unique way to “shine the light” on what is happening in those hog finishing barns. 

NPPA has purchased five model finishing barns that are used for educational purposes in schools, and at county fairs and other events.   The model barn is 2½ feet wide by 6 feet long.  The roof opens to give people a look at the layout of the finishing facility.  It even has tiny pigs.

At World Pork Expo, we visited with NPPA’s youth education director Kyla Wize about the model finishing barn project, as well as the NPPA’s youth mentoring program.

AUDIO: Kyla Wize (5:25 MP3)


The reemergence of swine dysentery

According to Novartis Animal Health professional services veterinarian Dr. Mark Hammer, swine dysentery has definitely reemerged and has become a growing problem for pork producers. Hammer says this contagious disease appears to have started in the eastern U.S., and veterinary reports indicate it has now spread to the Midwest. We visited with Dr. Hammer at the World Pork Expo trade show.

AUDIO: Mark Hammer (5:18 MP3)