Some Phytophthora showing up in Wisconsin soybeans

UW Ext photo

UW Ext photo

The wet spring this year has led to some Phytophthora root and stem rot in Wisconsin soybeans this year.  University of Wisconsin Field Crops Pathologist Damon Smith says samples taken from June 6th to July 16th found the pathogen in soybean fields in 15 counties.  That does not mean the disease will flourish but he says they have been getting positive samples in the diagnostic lab.  “We’re seeing more of the stem rot this year.”

Given the moderate weather, Smith thinks most of the infection has already occurred and damage will be limited.  On top of that, most of the soybeans planted in the state are Phytophthora-resistant although there is a difference between resistance and immunity.

He says producers should monitor their fields, if they suspect a problem take a sample and get it analyzed to make sure it is Phytophthora.  It is important to keep accurate records for future reference as any infection should be taken into consideration when making planting choices next year.

AUDIO:Smith talks about the situation 6:37 mp3

USDA implements new poultry inspection system

USDA is implementing that New Poultry Inspection System (NPIS) for processors.  Food Safety and Inspection Service will now require that all poultry companies take measures to prevent Salmonella and Campylobacter contamination, rather than addressing contamination after it occurs. All poultry facilities will be required to perform their own microbiological testing at two points in their production process to show that they are controlling Salmonella and Campylobacter. These requirements are in addition to FSIS’ own testing, which the agency will continue to perform.

FSIS is also introducing the optional NPIS in which poultry companies must sort their own product for quality defects before presenting it to FSIS inspectors.  The goal is to have FSIS inspectors spend less time with quality assurance allowing them more time to observe the birds, take samples for testing, check plant sanitation and verify plant compliance.

The proposal was first published in January of 2012.  After receiving numerous comments, a number of changes were made to the plan including capping the line-speed at 140 birds per minute.

FSIS estimates that the NPIS will prevent nearly 5,000 Salmonella and Campylobacter foodborne illnesses each year

The PEDv impact

Rabobank recently released its quarterly hog report and the numbers show just how big of an impact the PED virus is having.  Will Sawyer is Vice President; Animal Protein, Food and Agribusiness Research for Rabobank, he says we have not yet seen the bottom.

AUDIO: Sawyer talks about the impact 3:27 mp3

U.W. Madison’s Shaver recognized for dairy research

U.W. photo

U.W. photo

Dr. Randy Shaver of the University of Wisconsin-Madison has been awarded the American Dairy Science Association Nutrition Research Award for his professional achievements. The award was established in 1948 to promote and stimulate research in dairy cattle nutrition and is jointly sponsored by the American Feed Industry Association and ADSA.

A native of Pennsylvania, Shaver received a master’s degree from the University of Maryland then completed his doctorate degree in dairy science at UW-Madison in 1986 after conducting research at UW-Madison and the U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center.

As a professor in the Animal Science Department, Shaver has advised or co-advised 29 master’s or doctoral students at UW-Madison. He has authored or co-authored 88 peer-review journal publications, 170 scientific abstracts, 101 popular-press articles in industry trade magazines and 249 newsletter articles, extension handouts or bulletins, and internet publications. He has presented 590 invited papers at industry conferences in 46 states and numerous foreign countries.

Weather conditions promote white mold

Considering how late the crop was planted, Extension soybean disease specialist Anne Dorrance at Ohio State University says soybeans are looking good.

“We’ve got the right population for stands, we’re above 100,000 which we need for later planting,” said Dorrance. “So from that aspect I think things are looking pretty good, we just hope the rest of it will catch up in time.”

When out scouting, Dorrance says conditions during flowering could promote white mold.

“We still have a few susceptible varieties, companies are really doing a good job with screening, but there are just some varieties that people just like to grow,” Dorrance said. “Those are the ones that really need targeted.”

The Extension soybean disease specialist says white mold won’t be found in every field, so farmers should refer back to their previous field notes and pay particular attention to those fields where stem rot has been a problem in the past.

Audio: Anne Dorrance, Extension soybean disease specialist (3:05 mp3)


Raw milk advocate loses appeal

A well-known raw milk advocate in Wisconsin has lost his appeal of a misdemeanor conviction.  The Wisconsin 4th District Appeals Court upheld the Sauk County Circuit Court ruling that Vernon Hershberger had violated a holding order from the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.

Hershberger was initially charged with selling unpasteurized milk from an unlicensed dairy farm and operating without a processor’s license and retailer’s license.  The state raided his Loganville farm in 2010 and placed a “hold” on all of the dairy products he had at the time.  He ignored the order and continued to sell products to members of a buyers club.  The case drew national attention as raw milk advocates from across the country descended on Baraboo, Wisconsin using the famous Al Ringling Theater across the street from the courthouse for speeches, presentations, music and other activities in support of Hershberger and raw milk.

In June of 2013, a jury acquitted him on all charges except violation of the hold order.  He was fined $1,000.

Final steps for animal disease traceability in Indiana

Animal Disease Traceability is one stop closer in Indiana.  Indiana State Veterinarian Dr. Bret Marsh says the changes to Indiana’s livestock identification and documentation requirements will put Hoosiers in compliance with the federal animal disease traceability rule that was implemented in 2013.  “It basically says there are certain specific identifications for livestock that move in interstate commerce and specific types of documentation,” he says.  “The advantage we have in Indiana is that we’ve already been doing a lot of this work for a long time.  Many of the things produces won’t see a big change with as livestock moves inter or intra state.”

Marsh tells Brownfield the rule needs to go through some final steps in the Governor’s office and will be ready for implementation around January 1, 2015.

But in the meantime – there are ways for producers to be prepared.  “First is to have your premises registered,” he says.  “It doesn’t take much more information than you might find in a phone book.  We’re not concerned with how many animals are on a site – just that it is a site that has animals on it.  Particularly as it deals with traceability.”

Dr. Marsh details species specific premises registration in the interview below.

AUDIO: Dr. Bret Marsh, Animal Disease Traceability (3:30mp3)

Some problem with poultry genetics

One of the world’s largest chicken genetics companies apparently has a fertility problem with a popular breed of rooster. Aviagen Group says its Ross males sire about 25 percent of the nation’s meat-type birds. Last summer, Sanderson Farms, the third-largest poultry producer in the U.S. noticed a reduction in chick-output from the Ross line it buys from Aviagen. Sanderson CFO Mike Cockrell tells Reuters about 17 percent of the eggs from Aviagen Ross parents failed to hatch. A 15 percent fail-rate is normal. It was determined that the Ross roosters had become very sensitive to being overfed. They got fat and fertilization decreased.

Sanderson has switched to a different breed of rooster and preliminary results seem to be favorable.

Owned by German family-run holding company, EW Group, Aviagen’s Broiler Breeders are based in Huntsville, Alabama and include Ross, Arbor Acres and Indian River brands. Aviagen Group also has Aviagen Turkeys and CWT Farms and has operations around the globe.

Wisconsin levies fines for CIV violation

Roger C. Vogt, a farmer from Glen Haven, Wisconsin, and Duane VanderVeen, a cattle buyer and owner of Westview Cattle Company headquartered in Harris, Iowa, have agreed to pay forfeitures to the Grant County Court in Wisconsin.

An investigation began in August of 2013 when Michigan Department of Agriculture authorities notified Minnesota Board of Animal Health that tuberculosis (TB) exposed calves had been shipped from Westview’s gathering facility in Michigan to Minnesota and Iowa.  Further investigation by Minnesota found that 666 of the calves had instead been diverted to Vogt’s farm in Wisconsin during July and October of 2012 and held there for several months.

The cattle were not eligible to enter Wisconsin since they did not have a negative tuberculosis test, official identification and valid Certificate of Veterinary Inspection.

Vogt and VanderVeen were ordered to pay civil forfeitures totaling more than $1,500.

Follow-up TB testing was done on Vogt’s remaining cattle and all tests were negative.

New product introductions from Novartis Animal Health

novartis logoNovartis Animal Health has introduced two new products into the marketplace. The are FLORVIO, a new antibiotic for treatment of swine respiratory disease; and Natunex, a new line of non-toxic biocides for controlling insects.

We discussed these new products with Dr. Mark Hammer, manager of professional services with the pig and poultry business unit of Novartis Animal Health.

AUDIO: Dr. Mark Hammer (5:49 MP3)