Marel and Stork join forces

At the end of November 2007, Marel Food Systems and Stork N.V. entered into an agreement on the acquisition of the Stork Food Systems division of Stork N.V. The companies expect the transaction to take several months, subject to anti-trust clearance and other customary closing conditions. Until then, both companies will continue to operate independently as before.

Marel Food Systems is headquartered in Gardabaer, Iceland, and manufactures a wide range of machines and systems for most sectors of the food processing industry worldwide. Stork Food Systems, headquartered in Boxmeer, the Netherlands, is a global provider of solutions for the poultry, red meat and further processing industry. Stork Food and Dairy Systems – part of the Stork Food Systems Group – manufactures products for the fast growing dairy, juice, food processing and pharmaceutical segments.

After the acquisition, Marel Food Systems will be able to offer equipment and systems for primary, secondary and further processing, creating more value for customers with innovative equipment and solutions. The company will continue its strategy to grow as an important innovator in the food processing industry with a strong focus on research and development.

The businesses of Marel Food Systems and Stork Food Systems are complementary, with no overlap in product portfolios. Changes in respective markets will be minimal due to years of partnership between Marel and Stork. Both companies will ensure stable operations in their core fields and continue their close collaboration with customers.

Evonik acquires Degussa

In September 2007, Germany gained a new industrial group: Evonik Industries AG. Headquartered in Essen, Evonik is a creative industrial group for chemicals, energy and real estate, achieving an impressive track record during the four years of group restructuring.

Its Chemicals business area includes Degussa, which had been acquired by RAG Beteiligungs-AG in 2006. Although the name has changed to Evonik, people, products and services will remain the same. The Feed Additives group will remain focused, innovative and responsible in its activities, providing the four essential amino acids for animal nutrition: DL-methionine, L-lysine (Biolys), L-threonine and L-tryptophan.

Big Dutchman’s big break into biogas

BD Agro Renewables GmbH & Co (BD Agro) has just landed its biggest order so far. BD Agro is the new biogas segment of the Big Dutchman Group of Vechta, Germany. Together with biostrom Energiesysteme, also based in Vechta, it will build modern biogas projects at approximately 40 locations all over Germany in the next two years. The contract is worth €46.1 million. The picture shows the partners in this new project.


Commission authorises GM maize and sugar beet

European Commission has adopted Decisions authorising three genetically modified (GM) maize (1507xNK603; NK603 x MON810; and 59122 Herculex RW) for feed and food use and for import and processing. Also authorised is GM sugar beet (H7-1) for use as food and feed.

The authorisations are valid for 10 years. Products from these GMOs will be subject to EU labelling and traceability rules.

Poultry Hub – a new information resource

Poultry farmers, industry professionals, researchers and the general public are using an innovative new website, , to share just about anything to do with commercial poultry production. 

Developed by the Australian Poultry Cooperative Research Centre (Poultry CRC), Poultry Hub uses the same free software as Wikipedia, a popular online encyclopaedia, giving users the choice of interacting with the site and editing the content. Users can also promote a poultry event that does not have dedicated web site, post news releases, check job postings or investigate research and training opportunities.

Poultry Hub addresses the need in Australia for an easily accessible ‘information centre’ outlining both the scope of universally available poultry-related information as well as education and training relevant to a career in the poultry industry.

Visitors to the site can register for free and immediately begin editing content on just about any page of the site, including their own profiles or specialist articles.

The Avian Immunology Research Group (AIRG) is having its 10th meeting on Queensland’s Gold Coast just before the World’s Poultry Congress in Brisbane in June/July, and the Australians amongst them have been using Poultry Hub to get the word out. Andy Bean and Matt Bruce from CSIRO Livestock Industries mastered Poultry Hub’s Wiki interface, creating an impressive event page for AIRG2008.

The University of New England’s Poultry Research and Teaching Unit (PRATU) is moving to Poultry Hub to update its web site

Poultry CRC’s Chris Day will be presenting on Poultry Hub at the World’s Poultry Congress in a talk entitled building community and collaboration for the poultry industries.


Chris Day and Julie Roberts of CRC’s new Poultry Hub web site

VIV India 2007: foundation for future growth

Organisers, VNU Exhibitions Europe, report that quality was key at the first edition of VIV India, held in early November 2007 in New Delhi. There was a strong emphasis on education and the trade-quality show attracted international and Indian exhibitors to one of the first shows of its kind in the country. First-time partner, Inter Ads Montgomery, gave VIV India a professional look and feel.

Over the three days, 3400 visitors passed through the doors of VIV India 2007. Of these, 83% were Indian livestock professionals looking for solutions for prevention, efficiency and processing. There were 115 exhibitors from 23 countries. With delegations from countries such as Iran, Korea and Russia, there were 580 international visitors.

Chief guest was the Honourable Professor V.L. Chopra, who is in charge of the Indian livestock industry in the government of India. He officially opened the show while the opening conference was attended by several other dignitaries of the Indian government and institutions. Rabobank chose VIV India 2007 for the official presentation of its report, Challenges and opportunities in the Indian animal protein market, which covers the Indian market for poultry, dairy and aquaculture production in facts and figures.

In 2009, VIV India will return for its second edition. The precise dates and location will be determined shortly.


Latest AminoNews from Evonik

Feed Additives Business Unit of Evonik Industries – previously known as Degussa – has published the second edition in 2007 of its customer magazine, AminoNews, for the compound feed industry.

Dr Andreas Lemme has contributed an article on adjusting dietary amino acids to energy in broiler diets in response to rapidly rising feed prices. There are also items on marker selection for feed mix uniformity evaluation and on methionine hydroxy analogue calcium salt (MHA-CA) as a methionine source for the feed industry.

The publication can be downloaded from the web site,   

New managing director of Cherry Valley


One of the brains behind the success of Cherry Valley Farms International – Richard Bird – has been appointed managing director.

(Editor’s comment: This corrects the announcement in the November 2007 issue of Poultry International. Apologies to Mr Bird and to Cherry Valley for the mistake, and to readers for any confusion.) 

CAST publications on avian flu

Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) has released two new publications on avian influenza (AI) vaccination. Written and reviewed by a CAST Task Force from Italy, Australia, the UK and the USA, they provide a summary and education on the crucial issues surrounding vaccination.

Avian influenza vaccines: focusing on H5N1 high pathogenicity avian influenza (HPAI) with a comprehensive bibliography is Special Publication 26 (38 pages). It can be ordered from CAST web site, (hardcopy: US$18.00 plus shipping; electronic download: US$10.00). 

Excerpted from the larger report, Avian influenza vaccination: a commentary focusing on H5N1 high pathogenicity avian influenza is CAST Commentary QTA2007-3 (12 pages). It is available online free of charge.

USPoultry names Starkey new president

US Poultry & Egg Association board of directors has selected John Starkey to become the association’s new president. He will manage the business affairs of the association, in keeping with the policies of the board of directors. Mr Starkey joined USPoultry as vice-president of environmental programmes in 2000, and succeeds Don Dalton who retired recently. 

Hy-Line partnership in India

Hy-Line International has formed a new strategic partnership in India in order to supply the latest Hy-Line genetics to Indian egg producers. The new partnership is with Ponni Breeding Farms and Hatcheries in Namakkal, Tamil Nadu. According to Hy-Line’s president & CEO, Dr. John Greaves, “We have entered into a new agreement with Ponni Breeding Farms and Hatcheries to supply our flagship white egg layer, Hy-Line brand W-36, to the Indian market; and we’re very excited about this new development. Ponni Breeding Farms and Hatcheries is a highly respected company in Tamil Nadu and we have great expectations of market share growth in with them in India.”

Hy-Line currently has a worldwide market share of over 40% at the commercial layer level; and is the leading brand in the top 15 countries in the world that collectively produce 80% of the world’s egg output. “India is a relatively new frontier for Hy-Line,” stated Dr. Doug Grieve, Hy-Line’s director of global technical services; “but it represents a significant potential growth opportunity as per capita egg consumption rises in the country.”

Multivac and Ishida in strategic co-operation

Packaging industry leaders, Multivac and Ishida, have agreed a strategic co-operation to provide customers with top, fully integrated packaging line solutions. Multivac will distribute Ishida Quality Centre equipment, together with its own thermoformers, tray-sealers and labellers – under Multivac branding in all countries in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

GD develops new test for Marek’s vaccination

GD Animal Health Service Deventer in the Netherlands has developed new tests that use feather analysis to determine whether vaccination against Marek’s disease have been carried out correctly. They also show if the birds have caught an early field infection. GD has developed a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test to determine the number of vaccine particles in the blood and feathers of vaccinated chicks.

Success for LTZ’s franchise hatchery meeting

More than 170 participants from 29 countries were warmly welcomed at Lohmann Tierzucht GmbH’s 45th Franchise Hatchery Meeting, which was held in Verona. In addition to the three-day symposium, the participants had the opportunity to explore Verona by participating in the supporting programme. The first day was dedicated to veterinary themes and the second to nutrition.