The Experts in Animal Health

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Brakke Consulting’s
Animal Health News & Notes for May 23, 2008
Copyright © Brakke Consulting, Inc.
Editor: Lynn Fondon, DVM, MBA
earnings news
Hartville Group
Menu Foods
Pet DRx
Sanderson Farms
other news
BioArts International
BioResource Int’l
Eklin Medical Systems
GrainCorp Ltd
United Pet Group
Kansas City, MO

The 52nd annual conference is set for June 15 – 18, 2008 in Kansas City, MO. The Kansas City area is home to many of the country’s largest animal health companies. This year’s conference will provide the latest information on university, government and industry research into the management of food animal ectoparasites.  The program will also include presentations on the Kansas City Animal Health Corridor, National Biosecurity and Agro-terrorism, and legal perspectives on veterinary forensic entomology.
For more information, go to:
> Patterson Companies announced results for its fiscal year 2008 ended April 26.  Full-year sales of the Webster Veterinary Supply unit increased 12% to $446 million. (company website) 
> Biopure Corporation announced its financial results for the second fiscal quarter ended April 30, 2008. Total revenues for the second fiscal quarter of 2008 were $902,000, including $777,000 from sales of the company’s veterinary product Oxyglobin.  Total revenues for the same period in fiscal 2007 were $619,000, including $500,000 from Oxyglobin sales.  The company reported a quarterly net loss of ($5.0 million) compared with a net loss of ($6.2 million) for the corresponding period in 2007. (company website) 
> PetSmart, Inc. reported net income of $41.2 million for the first fiscal quarter of 2008, compared with net income of $106.7 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2007. Net sales for the first quarter of 2008 increased 9% to $1.2 billion compared to the first quarter of 2007. Comparable store sales grew 3% in the first quarter. (company website)
> Pet DRx reported a net loss of ($3 million) in the first quarter of 2008 compared with a net loss of ($2.5 million) in the first quarter of 2007.  Revenues increased 67% in the quarter.  The company attributes the revenue jump primarily to a full-quarter contribution in 2008 of six hospitals it acquired late in the first quarter of 2007. (Nashville Business Journal)
> Hartville Group, Inc. announced financial results for the Company’s three month period ended March 31, 2008. The number of pets insured by Hartville was 73,364, up 83% from March 31, 2007. Gross revenue increased by 123% to $4.1 million, up from $1.9 million from the comparable period of 2007. The net loss for the first quarter of 2008 was ($1.5 million) compared to a net loss of ($1.8 million) in the comparable period in the prior year. (Business Wire)  
> Menu Foods Income Fund reported that its business is beginning to recover from the impact of last year’s recalls. The petfood maker lost an estimated ($2.2 million) for the three months ended March 31, 2008 compared with a loss of ($17.5 million) a year ago. Quarterly revenue was $55.6 million, down from $64.5 million. (Petfood Industry) 
> Sanderson Farms Inc. reported results for its second fiscal quarter ended April 30.  Net earnings were $6.2 million, down from $26.9 million a year ago. Net sales for the second quarter were $434 million, up from $361 million in the year-earlier period. (Meating Place) 
> Intervet announced the launch of Revalor-XS (trenbolone acetate and estradiol), a delayed-release combination implant for steers fed in confinement in a single implant. (Feedstuffs)  
> The FDA amended the animal drug regulations to reflect approval of a new animal drug application (NADA) filed by Pfizer, Inc.  The NADA provides for the veterinary prescription use of Convenia (cefovecin sodium) in cats and dogs by subcutaneous injection for the treatment of skin infections.  (AnimalNet – Federal Register)
> IDEXX Pharmaceuticals announced that it will no longer manufacture or sell PZI VET insulin (protamine zinc insulin).  According to the company, its supply of bovine and porcine pancreatic glands has been exhausted, and there are no facilities approved by the FDA for harvesting bovine pancreatic tissue. (JAVMA) 
> Salton, Inc. announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire United Pet Group from Spectrum Brands, Inc., for an amount equal to approximately $692.5 million in cash plus additional consideration in the form of $98 million of Spectrum’s Variable Rate Toggle Senior Subordinated Notes due 2013 and $124.5 million of Spectrum’s Senior Subordinated Notes due February 1, 2015. (Business Wire) 
> Eklin Medical Systems announced it has completed its acquisition of Ultrasource, the US veterinary distributor for Philips Medical Systems’ ultrasound product line. The acquisition adds an additional medical imaging
modality to company’s Eklin Digital Practice family. Financial terms were not disclosed. (PR Newswire) 
> BioArts International announced that it will sell five dog cloning service slots to the general public via a worldwide, online auction under its Best Friends Again program. BioArts was granted the sole worldwide license for the cloning of dogs, cats and endangered species by Start Licensing, Inc. using the somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) cloning patents developed at the Roslin Institute for the cloning of Dolly the sheep. (Business Wire) 
> Australian GrainCorp Ltd announced an offer to buy Ridley Inc. for a market value of approximately $392 million (A$415 million). Earlier this month Ridley reported that its Board of Directors had initiated a strategic review process. GrainCorp’s offer values Ridley at $1.39 per share, based on the closing price of GrainCorp shares on May 15, 2008 of $12.48. Ridley has not responded formally to the offer and told its shareholders to take no action until the offer is reviewed in detail. (Feedstuffs) 
> Novus International announced a worldwide agreement BioResource International, naming Novus as the exclusive worldwide marketer for BRI’s patented pellet-stable enzyme technologies. These will be added to its Cibenza feed additive enzyme portfolio. (Pig International)
> NETHERLANDS – BSE   The Dutch agriculture ministry reported that a Dutch cow has tested positive for BSE, the first in the Netherlands this year.  The eight-year-old cow was at a farm in Wapse, in the northeast of the country. This is the 85th case of BSE in the country since 1997. (AnimalNet – Reuters)
> US – PSEUDORABIES   The Michigan Agriculture Department reported that feral swine located in the vicinity of a game ranch where pseudorabies virus was diagnosed also have been confirmed positive for PRV.  To date, no commercial facilities are known to have been exposed to PRV and no clinical signs of PRV have been observed. (Pork Alert)
> US – MALIGNANT CATARRHAL FEVER   The National Veterinary Services Laboratories reported that three cases of the wildebeest strain of malignant catarrhal fever were confirmed in cattle originating from Texas.  The cattle in Texas were exposed to captive wildebeests, believed to be carriers of the disease, at the same ranch. The sheep strain of malignant catarrhal fever occurs naturally in the US, but the wildebeest strain is foreign to the US. (Delta Farm Press)
> US – DOWNER BAN   The US Secretary of Agriculture announced his intention to ban slaughter of cattle at federally inspected facilities that go down after initial inspection. Under current regulations, a downed cow can still be slaughtered if a USDA inspector reassesses the animal and determines it is still safe for consumption.  (Meating Place)
> US – ANIMAL ID LAWSUIT   The Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund has sent a “Notice of Intent to Sue” to the USDA and the Michigan Agriculture Department. The threatened legal action calls for immediate suspension of the National Animal Identification System. According to its Web site, Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund is a non-profit “social welfare” organization. The group seeks legislative changes that are relevant to sustainable farming and direct farm-to-consumer transactions. (Pork Alert)
>  US – EQUINE ID   Wall Street Detectives Inc. and Texas A&M University announced the launch of the Equine CODIS system, which has the capability of identifying horses to an accuracy of 99.99% using DNA profiles.  The tool is based upon the same process as the FBI’s CODIS  (Combined DNA Information Systems) and uses 13 horse-specific genetic markers and satellites. (Tack ’n Togs)
> US – KANSAS CITY VOTED ONE OF THE BEST FOR INNOVATION   Fast Company magazine recently cited the KC Animal Health Corridor as one reason that Kansas City is on the magazine’s list of the 12 best global cities for innovation. Kansas City was one of only three US cities included in the list.  (
As we head into a holiday weekend here in the US, we need to remind ourselves and our neighbors that we work in an industry that provides wholesome and safe animal protein at an economical price.  We also provide a high level of healthcare and services to our companion animal friends.  If we’re not careful, organizations with a focus on discrediting the accomplishments of our industry can present a distorted view to consumers and pet owners. 
Tell a friend this weekend how proud you are to work in the animal health industry!
Travel safe and have a great weekend!!
Ron Brakke
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