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Animal Health News & Notes for April 6, 2007 4/6/2007

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Brakke Consulting's
Animal Health News & Notes for April 6, 2007
Copyright © Brakke Consulting, Inc.
Editor: Lynn Fondon, DVM, MBA
See below for details
earnings news
TW Medical
other news
Akzo Nobel Chemicals
Premium Standard Farms
Select Sires
Xuzhou Anying Biologic Technology Development
> TW Medical Veterinary Supply announced record breaking sales performance in the first quarter of 2007.  Net sales for the quarter ended March 31, 2007, totaled $6.1 million, a 53% increase over sales from the first quarter of 2006.  Separately, TW Medical Veterinary Supply recently entered into distribution agreements with 3M Animal Care and DVM Pharmaceuticals. (company press release)
Brakke Consulting will soon be publishing its annual review of the small animal pain management products market.  The new report includes 2006 product sales and advertising data, as well as news on new and developing products in the pain management area. Included are sections on nutraceuticals and prescription joint support diets.
The report also includes a survey of over 200 small animal veterinarians regarding their usage of pain management products, including NSAIDs, nutraceuticals, and the new joint support therapeutic diets.
The report will be available at the end of April.  Orders placed on or before April 15, 2007 are eligible for the early-bird discounted price of $4,995.  Orders received after April 15 will be at the regular price of $5,500.
Place your order today to get the latest information on the veterinary pain management market!
For more information, contact Dr. Lynn Fondon at lfondon@brakkeconsulting.com or 972-243-4033. 
> Select Sires announced that, in partnership with IGENITY, a business unit of Merial, it is the first A.I. organization to designate a category of sires, called HealthMark, which combines predicted transmitting ability (PTA) data for health and fertility traits with genetic marker information. The comprehensive IGENITY profile now includes DNA markers for PL and dairy form (DF), both leading indicators of cow longevity. Bulls at Select Sires have been analyzed for these important traits using the IGENITY profile. HealthMark sires must score above average in all three health trait areas (SCS, DPR and PL) to qualify for this designation. (company press release)
> Schering-Plough announced that the FDA has approved Nuflor (florfenicol) as a Type A Medicated Article, for the in-feed control of swine respiratory disease (SRD) associated with Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae, Pasteurella multocida, Streptococcus suis, and Bordetella bronchiseptica in groups of swine in buildings experiencing an SRD outbreak. (The Pig Site)
> Alpharma Inc. announced it has moved its headquarters to Bridgewater, New Jersey. The move includes the headquarters of its Animal Health division. (company press release) 
> PetSmart announced that 2007 marks its 20th anniversary in the pet business.  The company will be celebrating by holding birthday parties on April 24th at all 908 of its stores in the US and Canada. (company press release) 
> Premium Standard Farms (PSF) and Smithfield Foods Inc. announced that the U.S. Department of Justice has exercised its option to take another 30 days to complete its antitrust review of the merger of the two companies. PSF and Smithfield announced in February that they were in substantial compliance with Justice's second request for information.  A merger, which would take the form of an acquisition by Smithfield for cash and stock valued at $640 million, would combine PSF, the second-largest hog producer and sixth-largest pork processor in the US, with Smithfield, the largest hog producer and largest pork processor. (Feedstuffs) 
> Balchem Corp. announced that its European subsidiary, Balchem B.V., entered into an agreement under which it will acquire Akzo Nobel Chemicals S.p.A.'s choline chloride and methylamines businesses located in Marano Ticino, Italy. The Marano Ticino operation manufactures and distributes choline, methylamines and derivative products to customers around the world. Financial terms were not disclosed. Recently, Balchem also announced plans to acquire the choline chloride business of Chinook Global Ltd. (Feedstuffs) 
> BASF announced it is discontinuing its lysine business and will shut down its production facility in Gunsan, South Korea, by mid-2007 to concentrate on its non-amino acids business.  Lysine is the only amino acid in BASF's nutrition portfolio. The Gunsan site has a current capacity for lysine of around 100,000 metric tons per year. (Feedstuffs) 
> ChemNutra Inc. announced a recall of all wheat gluten it had imported from one of its three Chinese wheat gluten suppliers, Xuzhou Anying Biologic Technology Development Co. Ltd.  ChemNutra said it learned that its wheat gluten, all from Xuzhou Anying, was among ingredients suspected as a potential cause of pet food problems. ChemNutra quarantined its entire wheat gluten inventory.  The FDA immediately commenced a thorough investigation of ChemNutra's wheat gluten, including documentation analysis, inspection and laboratory testing. In addition to ongoing cooperation with FDA, ChemNutra is conducting its own independent analytical tests of wheat gluten from all of its suppliers. (Feedstuffs)
> US - LOW-PATHOGENIC AVIAN INFLUENZA   The discovery of a strain of avian flu at a farm in rural Pendleton County, West Virginia, has prompted agriculture officials to destroy about 25,000 turkeys. A  State Agriculture Department spokesman said that the strain is different from the deadly H5N1 virus. The flu was detected during routine screening of the birds prior to slaughter. Authorities have ordered all poultry farms in a five-county area of West Virginia to keep all poultry litter until testing can be done. (Meating Place)
> US - CARCASS DECONTAMINATION A study by scientists at the University of Georgia Commercial has demonstrated that household steam cleaning is an efficient, cost-effective method for smaller-scale meat processors to remove naturally occurring bacteria from beef and hog carcasses. Tests were performed on 72 beef and 72 hog carcasses from four small processing plants, with one side of carcasses exposed to 60 seconds of steam treatment, and the other side left untreated. Prior to treatment, salmonella was found in five of the carcasses, but all tested negative for the pathogen after treatment. The method also reduced counts of aerobes, coliforms, and enterobacteriaceae in all carcasses. (Meating Place)
> US - FLU RESEARCH  The Department of Health and Human Services will spend $23 million a year for the next seven years to establish six centers for influenza research and surveillance. The six centers are St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn.; the University of California at Los Angeles; the University of Minnesota; Emory University; Mt. Sinai School of Medicine in New York City; and the University of Rochester in Rochester, N.Y.  The centers will work to determine the prevalence of bird flu in animals that come in close contact with people as well as investigate how flu viruses evolve. They also will track influenza in animals and people, both domestically and abroad. (Meating Place)
This may well be our shortest newsletter of the year.  I guess you could say it’s short and to the point, which is what we all need on a Holiday weekend. 
During the week we were involved with several early stage companies. We continue to believe that investment in innovation is the future livelihood of the industry.  Will the innovation come from smaller independent or university based startup companies, or from the larger companies with significant research dollars?  We believe it will be a combination of a number of these resources.  The biggest challenge for innovation is the time and money required.  It always takes longer and costs more to successfully reach the marketplace than the written forecasts in the first business plan.  The good news is that there are again venture funds interested in exploring investments in animal health.  Hopefully, there will be a few early successes and that will fuel an investment desire similar to what is currently happening with the equity funds. 
Have a great Easter weekend!!  Eat lots of protein and travel safe.
Ron Brakke
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