The Experts in Animal Health

Brakke Consulting’s
Animal Health News & Notes for November 22, 2002

Copyright © Brakke Consulting, Inc.

>  Patterson Dental reported that sales of the Webster Veterinary Supply unit increased 4.1% in the second quarter (ended October 26, 2002) to $45.2 million. Webster’s performance was affected by the decision of the manufacturer of a major heartworm medication to scale back sales and marketing support for this product during the fall months. Excluding this factor, Webster’s sales rose approximately 16% in the second quarter, well above planned levels. (Business Wire)

>  Smithfield Foods reported earnings of $4.1 million in the quarter ended Oct. 27, down 93% from $60.5 million in the same quarter last year. Low prices for hogs and a weak market for fresh pork products lowered earnings sharply in the second fiscal quarter for the nation’s largest pork processing company.  Sales rose 17% to $2 billion from $1.7 billion in the second quarter last year, with higher sales in the company’s beef and processed meats businesses helping make up for a 36% decline in hog production revenue.  (AP)


Brakke Consulting’s 2002 US Flea Control and Heartworm Markets will be available the first week of December, immediately after the US Thanksgiving holiday. 

This year’s report will include an all-new survey of 250 dog and cat owners, as well as a new veterinarian survey.  Product sales and trends for the veterinary products, as well as an overview of the trends in OTC sales, will also be included in the report.

The report will be available until December 20, 2002 at an early-order price of $3,500.  Studies ordered after the Christmas holiday will be priced at $4,000.

For more information, call 972-243-4033 or email Dr. Lynn Fondon at


>  Milkhaus Laboratory, Inc. announced that it would spin out its veterinary products subsidiary known as Milkhaus Veterinary Products, Inc. or “MVP.” The Company also announced that Mr. Thomas Hatch would join the new corporate entity as its President and CEO.  The parent will retain an equity position in MVP and there is a licensing agreement whereby each has access to discoveries made by the other in their respective therapeutic domains, human and veterinary products respectively.  (Business Wire)

>  The Hartz Mountain Corporation is rolling out new packaging and labeling for its Advanced Care Plus and Advanced Care Once-a-Month, including a new application process that makes the product easier for pet owners to use. 
The actual product formulation will not change. An extensive consumer education campaign will accompany the rollout of the new Advanced Care packaging and labeling. (PRNewswire)

>  The Texas Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners and the Texas Board of Pharmacy have filed a lawsuit against PetMedExpress which includes at least two criminal acts: federal and misdemeanor crimes involving the illegal sales of prescription drugs.  This marks the first time a state agency has taken PetMedExpress to court, although a number of states have fined the company for violating State Pharmacy board rules.  (DVM Newsmagazine)

> Alcide Corporation announced that the company has received approval from Health Canada for the use of Alcide’s Sanova antimicrobial intervention on red meat carcasses processed in or exported to Canada.  With this approval, Alcide may now initiate marketing and selling Sanova to abattoirs in Canada. The approval also expands the available US market for Sanova to include those slaughter operations which export red meat carcasses and primal cuts to Canada.  Sanova is presently used by the United States poultry industry on more than 6 billion pounds of chicken annually, and it is expected that the red meat industry will use Sanova on over a billion pounds of beef, pork and lamb during the next year. (Business Wire)

>  Heska Corporation and Dolphin Medical, Inc., a majority-owned subsidiary of OSI Systems, Inc. announced the official launch of the Heska Vet/Ox G2 Digital Monitor. It monitors heart rate, oxygen saturation (SpO2), respiratory rate, and body temperature in a portable, rugged, easy-to-use package.  Dolphin Medical will manufacture the device for Heska and has commenced initial shipment to support marketing ramp-up. (PRNewswire)

>  H. J. Heinz Company confirmed that the previously announced transaction (by which Heinz is spinning off its U.S. and Canadian pet food and other businesses to its shareholders and then merging these businesses with Del Monte Corporation) is proceeding on schedule toward a closing late this calendar year or early next year. (Business Wire)



We have more than filled the room for our NYC Presentation on December 2nd.  We cannot accept any additional registrations.  Thanks to all of you that have registered.  We’ll see you there. 

The next Animal Health and Nutrition Industry Overview will be presented at the NAVC in Orlando, FL on Monday, January 20th.  You will be able to begin registering on-line December 2nd for Orlando.

The  Orlando 2003 Animal Health and Nutrition presentation will include information including sales estimates for 2002 along with forecasts in the future, including the outlook for leading companies and products.  The focus will be on the US with some international aspects. Some specific areas are:
– the evolving pain management market
– pet nutrition
– food safety and animal welfare and its impact on industry
– impact of generic products on the market place
– evolving and changing manufacturer distributor relationships
– changes in the flea, tick, and heartworm markets

There will be a fee of $300 per attendee, with discounts for multiple registrations from one company.  Attendees will be provided with an outline of the presentation at the time of the overview. 

For registration information, please call 972-243-4033 or register online at after December 2nd.  Registration for the Orlando overview will not be available online until that date.

>  EU   The European Parliament adopted the Keppelhoff-Wiechert report on additives for use in animal nutrition. Parliament supported the broad lines of the Commission proposal but wished to bring the deadline for phasing out to an earlier date, namely January 1, 2005 instead of 2006. The Scientific Steering Committee of the EU has recommended the progressive phasing out of the use of all antibiotics as growth promoters, while preserving animal health. (Wattnet Meatnews)

>  SWITZERLAND  two new cases of BSE have been discovered in Switzerland, bringing the total number of cases identified in Switzerland since the start of the year to 21. A total of 42 cases of BSE were recorded in Switzerland in 2001. (AnimalNet – Agence France Presse)

>  US   Collections and programs of the Pork Checkoff will continue through a stay granted Nov. 15, 2002, by the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.
A Federal District Court in Michigan found the Pork Checkoff unconstitutional on Oct. 25, 2002.  The stay was requested by the U.S. Department of Justice to allow the government time to appeal the decision of U.S. the District Court Judge.  The stay allows the Pork Checkoff to continue while the Court of Appeals considers the appeal of the Michigan ruling. (PRNewswire)

>  US   The USDA announced that Jack Lambersky Poultry Company is expanding a nationwide recall of chicken and turkey meat to 4.2 million pounds because it may be contaminated with listeria. The company, which does business as J.L. Foods, initially recalled 200,000 pounds of the meat on Nov. 2. (AP)

>  US   Scientists have mapped the genome of the cattle and sheep disease Johne’s.  Scientists have debated whether the intestinal disease is related to the human Crohn’s disease because infected animals and humans suffer similar symptoms – diarrhea, weight loss and inflamed digestive tracts. The Johne’s bacterium, M. paratuberculosis, is found in some but not all Crohn’s patients. The map of Johne’s will lead scientists to understand more about both diseases and may settle the debate. (AP)

>  UK   Dogs and cats from the United States and Canada will soon be allowed to enter Britain without a six-month quarantine.  The government announced that from Dec. 11 its “pet passport’’ plan for vaccinated animals from Western Europe and some other countries will be extended to cats and dogs from the United States and Canada. (AP)
>  US   Americas Veterinarian, Inc. has unveiled a new Website that provides pet owners with quality, one on one, online chat services with veterinarians seven days a week.  The website offers pet owners the opportunity to seek answers about their pets’ health issues and behavioral problems, from qualified veterinarians.  In addition to live chat, members are given access to their own pet journal (for medical records), pet calendar, and pet lost & found poster template, all securely accessible from any computer. (PRNewswire)

>  US   The USDA warned meat companies that it will increase testing of plants for listeria unless they do it themselves and share the results with the government.
Inspectors will target plants that process meats considered at high or medium risk of becoming poisoned with listeria, such as deli meat and hot dogs. Processors are required to test their products for the bacterium, but not their plants and equipment. (AP)

>  US   University of Florida researchers have identified West Nile virus in 3 Florida alligators, the first time the disease has been observed in the North American species. State public health veterinarian confirmed that the three farm-raised alligators tested positive for the illness last month.  Hundreds of alligators raised at the farm have died suddenly in the last 4 years, and now they suspect West Nile was at least partially to blame. A number of other farms have experienced similar sudden-death problems with their alligators. (Promed)

>   US  At the White House, Christmas this year will go to the dogs. And cats. Even an alligator.  First lady Laura Bush announced that holiday decorations at the White House will celebrate the pets who have lived in the executive mansion over the years.  Workers in the White House residence have toiled since July on 25 replicas of various first family pets that will adorn the State Floor during the upcoming holidays. Of course, the Bush pets – dogs Barney and Spot, and cat India – will be featured. So, too, the alligator John Quincy Adams received as a gift from Marquis de Lafayette. Other offbeat White House pets that could make the cut: Old Whiskers, the pet goat belonging to President Benjamin Harrison’s son, Russell, and Caroline Kennedy’s pony, Macaroni, a gift from Lyndon Johnson.  For the Washington state Noble fir selected to grace the Blue Room, Mrs. Bush, an avid bird-watcher, asked artisans to create nearly 400 ornaments depicting birds indigenous to their home states.  (AP)


The Australian Animal Health market grew by 2% in value to the end of September 2002, according to the Avcare industry audit.  Year on year comparisons showed pet products were mostly up, while livestock products were mostly down. (Rural Business)


This is our last newsletter before the Thanksgiving Holiday week.  We want to thank all of you for your support and projects in 2002.  If it were not for our clients’ use of our services we would not be able to provide this newsletter to you each week. 

We wish you and your families a save and enjoyable Thanksgiving Holiday.  Travel safely and eat plenty of animal protein.

[Ron Brakke]

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