The Experts in Animal Health

Brakke Consulting’s
Animal Health News & Notes for December 21, 2000

Copyright © Brakke Consulting, Inc.
Company Earnings Releases

>  Animal health sales at Bayer grew 14% during the first three quarters of 2000.  (Animal Pharm)

>  Central Garden & Pet Company announced its financial results for the fourth quarter and full year ended September 30, 2000.  Full year net sales were $1.4 billion, compared with $1.5 billion in fiscal 1999.  Central reported a net loss for fiscal 2000 of ($11.8) million, compared with a net income of $24.5 million in fiscal 1999.  Excluding one-time charges associated with its discontinuance of its relationship with The Scotts Company, net income would have been $14.6 million.  Net sales for the fourth quarter were $300.7 million, compared with $331.8 million in 1999.  The net loss in the fourth quarter 2000 was ($30.3) million, compared with a net loss of ($4.3) million in the comparable period in 1999. Excluding one-time charges, net loss would have been ($3.9) million. (Business Wire)

>  Alcide Corporation announced net sales and earnings for its second fiscal quarter and half year ended Nov. 30, 2000.  Net sales of $4.7 million for the quarter and $8.9 million for the half were the highest for any quarter or six-month period in Alcide’s history, and were 58% and 59% higher than the comparable periods in 1999.  Sales of Sanova to the poultry industry were $1.9 million for the quarter, a 78% increase over the comparable period in 1999.  Net income was $606,000 for the quarter and $988,000 for the half-year ended Nov 30, 2000 compared to net losses in 1999 of ($200,000) and ($594,000) respectively.  (Business Wire)

Company News Releases

>  Philipp Brothers Chemicals, through its newly formed company Phibro Animal Health, has completed its purchase of Pfizer’s line of medicated feed additives.  The purchase gives Philipp Brothers a leading position in the medicated feed additives market, and complements its existing mix of animal health and nutrition products, which are marketed by Prince Agri Products Inc., Koffolk, and other subsidiaries. (Feedstuffs)

> Novartis and Evolutec, a UK-based biotechnology firm, have signed an agreement to conduct joint research related to proprietary tick vaccine technology developed by Evolutec.  The technology uses proteins derived from the saliva of blood-feeding ectoparasites.  Terms were not disclosed (Animal Pharm)

> Schering-Plough is testing a new poultry vaccine effective against coccidiosis in broilers.  Paracox-5 will give poultry producers in Europe a way to control coccidiosis without using in-feed coccidiostats.  Field trials have demonstrated that the protection afforded by the vaccine is comparable to that provided by a traditional in-feed coccidiostat, and that birds given the vaccine performed as well or better than those on the traditional treatment. A similar vaccine has been used extensively in broiler breeders with excellent results. (World Poultry)

>  Boehringer Ingelheim has applied to the European Union for a global patent for a blood test to detect mad cow disease in living cattle. The company hopes to bring the product to the European market by late summer 2001.  Boehringer collaborated with external partners on the test development, but declined to name them. (Reuters)

>  Faced with competitive pressure from a rival bidder, Smithfield Foods Inc. has filed with antitrust regulators for approval to acquire the giant meatpacker IBP Inc. Smithfield’s announcement came less than a week after poultry-processor Tyson Foods Inc. launched its own drive to buy slightly more than half of IBP’s stock.  Smithfield wants to begin the antitrust review process at the Justice Department and Federal Trade Commission so it can proceed with its acquisition effort. A corporate suitor typically can proceed with its merger effort 30 days after filing with federal antitrust regulators unless these regulators ask for additional information. Smithfield’s bid for IBP is certain to be examined closely by the Justice Department’s antitrust division because of the market share in pork production that a Smithfield-IBP combination would have. Smithfield, already the largest pork producer in the nation, has a 20% share of the market. IBP is # 2 with about 18% of the pork market. (E-markets – Knight Ridder/Tribune)

>  Embrex, Inc. announced the launch in Japan of Bursa-BDA, Embrex’s patented in ovo VNF poultry vaccine for Infectious Bursal Disease (IBD).  Shionogi & Co., LTD, Embrex’s exclusive distributor in Japan for Bursa-BDA, successfully gained the necessary regulatory registration of the product for the Japanese market.  Bursa-BDA (NP) is the Japanese product name for Bursaplex, which is registered for sale by Embrex in 17 countries in the Americas and Asia. (AnimalNet – company press release)

>  Infigen announced that it has received a $1 million milestone payment from Novartis Pharma AG for achievement of the first milestone in the companies’ collaborative agreement.  Infigen has successfully developed a reproducible proprietary nuclear transfer based cloning system and produced several litters of pigs.  (PRNewswire)

>  AviGenics announced that it has obtained option rights to license Geron Corp.’s nuclear transfer patent portfolio for the field of avian nuclear transfer.  AviGenics intends to apply the technology to create cloned poultry, which it believes will lead to new biopharmaceutical production methods and new poultry breeding strategies.  (PRNewswire)


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Animal Health News

> German officials have confirmed a second case of mad cow disease in the country and are investigating animals from other herds in southern Bavaria that have tested positive for the infection. Two other animals in Bavaria have also tested positive for the infection, and their herds are being isolated as researchers continue testing.  The French Agriculture Ministry has also reported two new cases of BSE. This brings France’s total number of confirmed cases this year to 139. (AgWeb)

> The EPA proposed tougher requirements on thousands of large animal feedlot operations, declaring that they are one of the country’s chief causes of water pollution. The proposed regulation would expand the number of cattle feedlots and hog farms that would have to get pollution permits. It also imposes new pollution control requirements on large poultry operations.

> The World Trade Organization (WTO) upheld a decision declaring that Korea’s import regime is illegal. The WTO agreed that Korea’s system of restricting 90% of imported beef from retail market channels is illegal. In addition, Korea’s excessive subsidies for its producers violate its WTO commitment to reduce domestic support. A WTO panel found that Korea’s requirement that imported beef and domestic beef must be sold in separate retail stores is inconsistent with its obligations under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). Korea is currently the number-three export market for U.S. beef. Korea imports more than 200,000 metric tons of beef each year, and nearly half of which comes from the United States. (AgWeb)

>  Four researchers at Texas A&M University have announced a major cloning breakthrough as they have successfully cloned an animal that is disease-resistant.  The calf is believed to be the first animal cloned for disease resistance. After testing hundreds of cattle, this one was found to be naturally resistant to brucellosis and, under laboratory conditions, resistant to tuberculosis and salmonellosis — all serious diseases in veterinary and human health. (DirectAg)

>  The US’ $1 billion, decades-long effort to rid the nation of brucellosis has moved one state closer toward its goal. South Dakota was declared free of brucellosis by the USDA this month.
In the 1940s through the 1960s, brucellosis was rampant in the cattle population. Four states – Florida, Oklahoma, Missouri and Texas – have yet to put brucellosis officially in the past.
Of those, Oklahoma and Missouri are on one-year countdowns similar to the past year’s schedule in South Dakota. The disease also remains at a Florida dairy and in a small herd of cattle on a Texas coastal island.  Also standing in the way of nationwide eradication is Yellowstone National Park’s dwindling bison herd. (AP)

Agribusiness News

>  Scientists have pioneered a genetically modified “super potato” which glows when it needs water. Researchers at Edinburgh University injected potato plants with a fluorescence gene borrowed from the luminous jellyfish aequorea victoria, which causes their leaves to glow green when dehydrated. The potatoes are not intended to be eaten but would act as “sentinels,” planted beside the commercial crop to alert a farmer that the rest of his field needed watering. The glow is barely visible to the naked eye but can be detected using a small hand-held device. Field trials are due to start next year though it could take some 20 years before the plants are commonly used. (Reuters)

Brakke Consulting Viewpoint
We want to wish all of our clients and newsletter readers a great holiday season.  We thank each of you for the confidence you have shown in Brakke Consulting over the past year.  Drive carefully and come back refreshed for 2001.

Ron Brakke
Lynn Fondon
Roger Cummings
John Mannhaupt
Richard Wilson
John Volk
John Short
Bob Reynolds
Bert Honsch
Dave Horn
Jim Guenther
Atsuo Hata
Dick Miles
Robin Oakley
Geoff Mahon
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