Editorial

 

IS THERE A LESSON FROM THE UK ORGANIC EGG EXPERIENCE?

Apr 22, 2014
    

Recent data and pronouncements from the UK suggest that there is a problem with the balance between supply and demand of organic eggs. There has been a steady decline in production since 2012 accounting for as much as a 10% reduction in availability, despite apparent demand at prevailing prices.

The problem has its origin in a progressive reduction in consumer support for organic eggs relative to alternative products from free-range and non-confined flocks. These eggs sell at lower prices. The decline in organic sales became apparent as far back as 2008 with a 12% reduction in demand by 2010. The waning in consumer acceptability was a topic of discussion at the 2012 IEC London Conference. In fact demand for organic had dropped by 35% in 2013 forcing UK farmers to divert production to other systems. The current imbalance between supply and demand stems from the fact that low or even negative margins on organic eggs have discouraged this category.

   

Egg Industry News

 

Lily Acquires Novartis

Apr 22, 2014
    

In a press release dated April 22nd, Eli Lily announced an agreement to purchase Novartis Animal Health for $5.4 billion in a cash transaction.  The acquisition propels the Elanco Animal Health subsidiary into the second place among animal health enterprises on the basis of sales. Eli Lily recently acquired Lohmann Animal Health with extensive involvement in vaccine manufacture

   
 

Peter van Horne Updates the EU Egg Industry

Apr 22, 2014

Dr. Pieter van Horne reviewed EU egg production statistics and costs

    

Dr. Peter van Horne of the Agriculture Economics Research Institute at the University of Wageningen in Holland updated attendees on the EU situation at the 2014 Egg Industry Center Issues Forum in Indianapolis.

Dr. van Horne is a distinguished poultry economist who serves as Chairman of the World Poultry Science Association Working Group and is the Economic Analyst and advisor to the International Egg Commission.

In his presentation, which is attached, he considers the recent history of the egg production industry in the EU with specific reference to the 2012 cage ban, production costs among major producers in the EU, international trade and his perspective on the European egg industry.

   

Dr. Hongwei Xin, Endowed Professor, Iowa State University, Director of the EIC welcoming attendees to the 2014 Egg Industry Center Issues Forum

The EU comprises 28 nations which collectively hold a total 375 million hens.

View the presentation at http://egg-cite.com/presentations/vanhorne

   
 

AEB Reports on Farm-to-Table Visit

Apr 22, 2014
    

On April 10th, Discovery Education and the AEB hosted the 3rd Annual Egg Farm-to-Table Virtual Field Trip.  This component of the Good Egg Project was held at Pearl Valley Farms in Pearl Valley, IL..  Approximately 200,000 students and teachers participated, representing a 70 percent increase in registrations compared to 2013.

   
 

Braswell Foods Makes Easter Donation

Apr 22, 2014

In advance of Easter, Inter-Faith Food Shuttle in Raleigh received a generous donation of 227 cases of eggs from Braswell Foods and Dunkin’ Donuts.

Dunkin’ Donuts teamed up with America’s Egg Farmers’ Good Egg Project to donate one egg to Feeding America food banks for every Eggs Benedict Sandwich sold during the first week of March. The eggs delivered on April 16 were provided by Braswell Foods in Nashville, N.C. Inter-Faith Food Shuttle was one of eight food banks across the country to receive an egg donation.

   
 

2013 AEB Annual Report

Apr 18, 2014
    

The annual report by the American Egg Board documents the categories and expenditures on activities amounting to $20.4 million for the year ending December 31st 2013.  This value was 5% higher compared withFiscal 2012.

Virtually all (99.6%)  revenue was derived from assessments.  During the past year, the AEB generated $2.7 million from the difference between revenue and expenses indicating prudent management. Assessment in 2013 was 10 cents per 30-dozen case from 142 producers with more than 75,000 hens. 

   
 

Weekly USDA Prices and Inventory

Apr 18, 2014

     

The USDA Egg Market News Report for Monday April 14th 2014, (Vol. 61: #30) documented the following “most frequent” range of Midwest prices as delivered to warehouses:-

     
  Prior Week   Current Week
Extra Large      163 –  163          163  –  166  cents per dozen
Large 161 –  164   161 –  164  
Medium 135 –  138   144 –  147  
Certified Organic EL 275 –  310   275 –  310  
Breaking Stock 118 –  120   118 –  120  
Checks 102 –  107   104  –  108  

 

   
 

Michael Foods To Be “Acquired” By Post Holdings

Apr 17, 2014
    

According to a press release dated April 17th Michael Foods has announced that it has been acquired from Goldman Sachs by Post Holdings, Inc. (POST)for a purchase consideration of $2.45 billion.  The acquisition is expected to be completed during the second quarter of 2014, after completion of formalities. EGG-CITE reported on ongoing negotiations and prospective suitors including Tyson Foods on February 20th and March 21st 2014. (see- Search Tab- enter “Michael Foods”)

   
 

Opposition to Urban Egg Production

Apr 17, 2014
    

EGG-CITE has commented extensively on the disadvantages of backyard flocks in urban areas.

Recently voters in Volga, SD. voted against allowing chickens and other poultry in backyards within the municipal area.  It is doubtful whether this action will be reflected in other communities where backyard chickens have become established. 

It is the opinion of many that the “urban-chicken” craze has peaked as enthusiasts recognize the cost and inconvenience of attempting to produce their own eggs.  A major issue is now the disposal of hens many of which have become a nuisance and imposing additional costs for animal control authorities.

   
 

Comprehensive Review of Lighting for Egg-Production Flocks -- Dr. Ian Rubinoff

Apr 16, 2014
    

2014 Midwest Poultry Federation Convention.

The Power Point slides, which were presented, are reproduced with his permission for the benefit of ourreaders.

It is important to understand the underlying factors which influence activity and how selection and implementation of lighting programs can affect productivity and hence profitability. Both basic physiology and practical application are included in the review. Recently manufacturers of LED lamps have generated unsubstantiated hype and have made unscientific claims regarding the benefits of their technology with respect to production.

The presentation by Dr. Rubinoff provides clear explanations on how lighting affects chick growth, development during rearing, subsequent onset of lay and production"

• View the Online Slide Presentation

 

   
 

2015 International Production and Processing Expo

Apr 15, 2014
    

USPoultry has announced that the 2015 International Production and Processing Expo (IPPE) will take place from Tuesday through Thursday January 27th through 29th 2015 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta GA.

   
 

XIVth European Poultry Conference

Apr 15, 2014
    

The XIVth European Poultry Conference will be held in Stavanger, Norway from 23rd to 27th of June 2014.

The preliminary scientific program will include a session on the future of poultry production including food safety and food security and challenges such as sustainability in the 21st century.  Specific sessions will be held on amino acid nutrition, meat quality, genetic diversity, and environmental control.  Additional focus events will deal with embryo nutrition, egg quality, welfare, physiology, mycotoxins, product safety and education.

   
 

H5 AI In Japan.

Apr 15, 2014
    

According to a ProMED posting on April 13th a case of strain H5 avian influenza has been diagnosed. The index case involved 112,000 hens at a farm in Taragi, Kumamoto Prefecture, The affected flock and hens on a similar contact farm have been depopulated. The Ministry of Agriculture also ordered a ban on the shipping or moving of chickens and eggs within a 1.8 mi radius of the two farms.

According to the Kumamoto Prefectural government, the farmer first discovered 70 chickens dead on Friday 11th April and another 200 the following day, suggesting that a high-pathogenicity strain was involved. The Prefectural government conducted a preliminary investigation on Saturday determining that one live chicken and five dead chickens were “positive” (assume viral antigen detected) for H5 AI. The prefectural government also conducted a DNA test on Sunday 13 April on specimens from the index farm which yielded the same H5 virus strain.

   

Shane Commentary

 

Colony Collapse Syndrome in Bees- A Rush to Judgment Vindicated

Apr 22, 2014
    

On February 12th 2014 EGG-CITE posted a commentary on Colony Collapse Syndrome in bees which was allegedly due to the use of neonicotinoid insecticides which were banned in the EU based on the “precautionary principle”.

The EGG-CITE commentary noted that generally environmental advocacy groups are quick to assign blame for what they consider the excesses of intensive agriculture. These opposition groups seize any opportunity to create doubt and anxiety, irrespective of scientific justification, to further their agendas which usually devolve around raising funds. Questionable research and strident amplification by advocacy websites is used to manipulate political and public opinion resulting in unjust regulations and knee-jerk legislation.

   
 

The Demise of Cellulosic Biofuels?

Apr 18, 2014
    

EGG-CITE has previously questioned the economic and technical viability of cellulosic biofuels.  If we can believe successive Administrations, the diversion of corn to ethanol was to be a temporary expedient until we were able to manufacture fuel from cellulosic waste and non-food crops.  To date the only non-corn biofuel produced has used municipal waste as a feedstock.

   
 
Dr. Simon M. Shane
Simon M. Shane
Contact     C. V.

Industry Prices: Tue Apr 22
 Corn4.96 $/bu
 Soybeans14.80 $/bu
 Soybean Meal480.00 $/ton
 Eggs, Producer94  ¢/doz
 Eggs, Warehouse 120-123 ¢/doz