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Animal Health News & Notes for February 29, 2008 2/29/2008

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Brakke Consulting's
Animal Health News & Notes for February 29, 2008

Copyright © Brakke Consulting, Inc.
 
Editor: Lynn Fondon, DVM, MBA
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IN THE NEWS:
 
earnings news
Alpharma
Bayer
Dechra
Heska
Sanderson Farms
Smithfield Foods
 
other news
Central Life Sciences
DRE Veterinary
Intervet
Kibow Biotech
Land O’Lakes Purina Feed
Merial
Nutramax Labs
Vetoquinol
 
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COMPANY EARNINGS RELEASES
 
> Bayer reported financial results for 2007. Animal Health sales were EUR 956 million ($1,407 million), an increase of 6% compared to 2006.  (company website) 
 
> Alpharma reported financial results for 2007. Animal Health revenues for the year totaled $367 million, an increase of 6% over 2006. The revenue gains reflect higher sales in both US poultry and livestock markets as well as increased revenues in the European and Latin American markets. (company press release)
 
> Heska reported financial results for 2007. Total revenue was $82 million, a 10% increase compared to 2006.  Animal health product revenue was $66 million, a 10% increase compared to 2006. Income from operations was $5.5 million, an 80% increase from the prior year period. (company press release) 
 
> Dechra Pharmaceuticals PLC reported results for the fiscal 2008 six months ended December 31, 2007.  Total revenues were GBP 141 million ($281 million), an increase of 12% compared to the comparable period in the prior year.  Pharmaceuticals division revenues were GBP 16.8 million ($33.5 million), a 40% increase compared to the comparable period in the prior year. (company website)
 
> Smithfield Foods reported results for its fiscal third quarter ended January 27, 2008.  Sales in the third quarter rose 16% to $3.79 billion.  Net income for the third quarter fell to $54.6 million from $60.4 million during the same period a year ago. Pork segment profits more than doubled due to the acquisition of Premium Standard Farms, lower raw material costs, significant export growth and improvement in packaged meats margins. (Meating Place)
 
> Sanderson Farms reported results for its fiscal first quarter ended Jan. 31, 2008.  The company posted net earnings of $6.2 million compared with a loss of ($2.8 million) in the same period a year earlier. Sales were $363 million, a 24% increase from last year's $293 million in the same quarter. (Meating Place)
 
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COMPANY NEWS RELEASES
 
> The UK's DEFRA announced that it has restored the Specific Animal Pathogens Order (SAPO) license to Merial to permit the use of FMD and bluetongue viruses for vaccine production. Merial's SAPO license was suspended last November following the 2007 FMD outbreak in southern England. (Feedstuffs)  
 
> Intervet announced it has received an official order to supply Bovilis BTV 8, an inactivated vaccine against Bluetongue, to the French government. Intervet previously received orders from the UK and the Netherlands. (company press release)  
 
> Kibow Biotech, Inc. announced that it has signed an exclusive world-wide licensing and marketing agreement for Kibow Biotics with Vétoquinol, SA. US and Canadian marketing and distribution rights were sold to Vétoquinol in June 2006. (Business Wire) 
 
> Nutramax Labs introduced Proviable multistrain probiotic for dogs and cats.  Proviable contains seven beneficial bacterial strains, encapsulated to ensure stability at room temperature and protect the microorganisms from gastric degradation.  Proviable is available as Proviable-DC and Proviable-KP, the latter of which also contains kaolin and pectin to help control diarrhea. (company literature) 
 
> Central Life Sciences introduced the new Bio Spot Puppy Line with four products intended just for puppies. Bio Spot Spot On for Puppies under 15 pounds kills adult fleas and contains an insect growth regulator (IGR). Other products in the line include shampoo, collar and fast acting pump spray. (company press release)
 
> Land O’Lakes Purina Feed announces the official launch of AMPLI-Calf Technology, a new calf starter technology now available in selected Land O’Lakes Purina Feed calf starters.  AMPLI-Calf Technology is a blend of unique, proprietary ingredients proven to increase feed intake, weight gain and overall height of young dairy calves. (company press release)  
 
> DRE Veterinary introduced the DRE Axis 4, a four-parameter patient monitor. The DRE Axis 4 veterinary monitor offers fast and reliable ECG, SpO2, noninvasive blood pressure (NIBP), and temperature. It also displays heart rate and pulse rate. With dimensions of 10 inches in width, 3.5 inches in height and 3 inches in diameter, and at less than three pounds, the Axis 4 saves space and is highly portable. (PR Leap) 
 
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ANIMAL HEALTH NEWS
 
> CANADA - BSE   The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) confirmed the nation's twelfth case of BSE in a six year old dairy cow put down on an Alberta farm. According to the agency, the animal's carcass is under CFIA control, and no part of it entered the human food or animal feed systems. The cow, born after Canada's feed ban, was a downer. It was seen recently by a private veterinarian, who submitted samples from the animal to the provincial lab for BSE testing. (Feedstuffs)
 
> UK - FMD FREE STATUS   Seven months after the initial Foot-and-mouth (FMD) disease outbreak, the UK Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) announced that the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) Scientific Commission has officially declared that the UK has regained freedom from FMD without vaccination following a three-month disease-free period. DEFRA said the UK gained EU disease freedom status and a return to normal trade on Dec. 31, 2007. (Feedstuffs)
 
> US - E. COLI RESEARCH   Researchers at Kansas State University and West Texas A&M University reported that a vaccine using SRP (Siderophore receptor and porin) technology has shown promise in decreasing E. coli shedding in beef cattle. The SRP technology, which was developed by Epitopix LLC, prevents bacterial uptake of iron, which is necessary for bacterial viability. (AnimalNet)
 
>  US - HSUS SUES USDA   The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) filed suit against the USDA, claiming that livestock inspection rules at slaughterhouses are inadequate to protect the nation's food chain. HSUS claims that a rule permitting federal veterinarians to make a case-by-case decision on cattle that are injured following an initial inspection is a loophole that endangers the food supply. (AnimalNet - AP)
 
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BRAKKE CONSULTING VIEWPOINT
 
We continue to note the high level of interest in the natural products area by in animal owners, veterinarians and manufacturers.  As we covered in our 2008 Industry Overview, we believe that the organic, natural and nutritional solutions to health problems in animals are gaining momentum and will become a larger part of the product mixes of many companies. 
 
The recent Brakke Consulting pet owner and equine owner studies provided some excellent insights into how they feel about these types of products. In the future we believe that these products will gain more credibility as larger companies invest in expanded research and development to improve the clinical research documenting product efficacy, as well as other aspects of these products. 
 
While the current volume for these types of products in the small package area is a low percentage of the total market, it is still one of the fastest growing segments.  In the feed additive area, a number of companies focusing on these types of products now have sales in excess of $100 million and boast some of the highest growth rates in the industry.   
 
There is currently a very high level of interest in these areas by animal owners, and in the end, they are your ultimate customer.  Are you listening to your customers?
 
Have a great weekend!!
 
Ron Brakke
 
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