The Experts in Animal Health

Brakke Consulting’s
Animal Health News & Notes for October 1, 2021
Copyright © Brakke Consulting
Editor: Lynn Fondon DVM MBA


Earnings News
General Mills

Other News
A&M Capital
Boehringer Ingelheim
Cargill Animal Nutrition
Champion Petfoods
Fulcrum Global Capital
Jectas Innovators
Open Prairie
Perdue Farms
Zooplus AG


  • General Mills reported results for its fiscal first quarter ended August 29, 2021. Pet segment sales increased 25% to $488 million. Net sales growth included 5 points of benefit from the acquisition of Tyson Foods’ pet treats business, which closed on July 6 and is being accounted for on a 1-month lag; organic net sales were up 20%. Segment operating profit increased 28% to $115 million. (company website)
  • Animalcare reported results for the first half of 2021. Sales were GBP 39.1 million ($53.4 million), an increase of 13% over the prior-year period.  Underlying EBITDA was GBP 8.5 million ($11.6 million), up 28% year-on-year. (IHS Markit Connect)
  • Avivagen announced its unaudited Financial Statements for the third quarter ended July 31, 2021. The Company reported revenues of $505,886 compared to $612,530 in the quarter ending July 31, 2020; and a comprehensive loss of $(1,503,665) compared to a comprehensive loss in the prior-year quarter of $(787,424). (company press release)


  • Boehringer Ingelheim and Invetx announced that they have entered into a collaboration agreement to develop novel, species-specific monoclonal antibody biotherapeutics targeting a wide range of diseases in the veterinary species, initially focused on dogs and cats. (company press release)
  • Merck Animal Health and its division Allflex Livestock Intelligence announced the availability of a new UTT3S ear tag applicator – the first advancement in applicators in more than 10 years according to the company. UTT3S applicator can be used to apply Allflex two-piece ear tags; it is not compatible with piglet tags, lightweight EID button tags, AXA tags or one-piece tags. (company press release)
  • Virbac and Jectas Innovators announced the signing of a collaborative agreement for the development of animal health vaccines. Japan-based Jectas designs recombinant protein molecules to be used as vaccine antigens. (
  • Elanco Animal Health and Kansas State University announced a five-year strategic alliance agreement that will allow for collaborative research and intellectual property licensing for commercialization activities. Researchers will focus on activities supporting sustainable practices in livestock production and pet health; vector-borne and emerging disease prevention and treatment; and advanced understanding of the microbiome in animals. (Feedstuffs)
  • VetStem, Inc., announced it has been issued a new patent that covers treating veterinary and human patients with an adipose-derived stem cell preparation. The new patent adds to VetStem’s expanding patent portfolio for use in veterinary and human medicine. This specific patent broadens the coverage to any disease in any mammal that is treated using VetStem’s methods of preparing the adipose stem cell preparation. (
  • Perdue Farms announced the launch of the FlockLeader line of probiotics and supplements designed for backyard chickens through its Perdue AgriBusiness subsidiary. The supplement line is the first direct-to-consumer product offering through the AgriBusiness division. (IHS Markit Connect)
  • Nationwide pet insurance has launched Vethelpline, a subscription-based, around-the-clock telehealth service, for non-customers. Pet owners can register for one-, three- or six-month subscriptions that are good for up to 10 pets. The service provides subscribers with unlimited 24/7 access by app or phone to a veterinary expert, who cannot legally diagnose a condition or prescribe medication, but might recommend that a pet see a veterinarian. (Todays Veterinary Business)
  • Vytelle announced the closure of an oversubscribed Series A funding worth USD $13.2 million. Private equity firm Open Prairie, through the Open Prairie Rural Opportunities Fund, and Fulcrum Global Capital co-led the round. Vytelle’s integrated technology platform combines Vytelle ADVANCE, a breakthrough in vitro fertilization (IVF) technology, with Vytelle SENSE, an animal performance data capture system, and Vytelle INSIGHT, an artificial intelligence based genetic analytics engine. (company press release)
  • Alvarez & Marsal Capital Partners (A&M Capital or AMCP), together with A&M Capital Opportunities Fund, announced it has acquired Worldwise, Inc. Financial terms were not disclosed. (Pet Business)
  • EU Fatro announced that the European Commission has granted marketing approval to its Fatrovax RHD rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus (RHDV) vaccine, developed with CrisBio technology from Algenex. The UK Veterinary Medicine Directorate also issued an approval for the product. (IHS Markit Connect)
  • NETHERLANDS Cargill Animal Nutrition announced its intention to enter into a strategic partnership with Dutch family-owned animal nutrition group Fuite to build a state-of-the-art premix, concentrate and young animal nutrition production facility in Hasselt, the Netherlands. The move comes as Cargill’s land lease for its production facility in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, will expire. (Feedstuffs)
  • EU Zooplus AG announced that Swedish private equity firm EQT AB has made an offer to buy the company for about 3.36 billion euros ($3.94 billion). The company said in a statement that its management and supervisory boards welcomed the takeover offer from EQT. (Reuters)
  • CANADA Champion Petfoods announced it has initiated a five-year grant to the University of Guelph in Guelph, Ontario. Champion’s grant will support the ongoing study of several topics in conjunction with other international research experts to expand the foundational knowledge of pet nutrition for the health of pets. In addition, this grant provides opportunity for training students in preparation for roles in the pet food and nutrition industry. (



  • US & UK – The FDA and the United Kingdom’s Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) announced their decision to expand the scope of the US-UK Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) Sectoral Annex for Pharmaceutical Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) to include inspections of veterinary pharmaceuticals (also called “animal drugs”). This MRA entered into force on January 1, 2021, but initially included only pharmaceuticals intended for human use. (FDA)
  • US – USDA BUDGET USDA announced a $3 billion investment in ag, animal health, and nutrition to support drought resilience and response, animal disease prevention, market disruption relief, and purchase of food for school nutrition programs. The support will be made available via the Commodity Credit Corporation. (
  • US – COVID The USDA’s National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL)  announced confirmation of SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) in a ferret in Florida. This is the first ferret confirmed with the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the United States. (
  • UK – ZOONOSIS RESEARCH Scientists at the University of Glasgow have developed a new machine learning method that can accurately predict which animal viruses could go on to infect humans in the future, using only information encoded in the viral genome. Using the same modelling, this model was able to accurately predict that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that caused the COVID-19 pandemic, and its closest viral relatives found in animals, had a high risk of being able to infect humans. This finding, together with more formal testing on hundreds of viruses with known zoonotic status, showed that the model makes actionable predictions on a diverse range of RNA and DNA viruses. The new modelling method predicts whether viruses might be able infect humans, but cannot determine how dangerous they may be in terms of either symptoms or epidemic/pandemic potential. The research – which can be read here – was published in PLOS Biology. (university press release)
  • US – PARASITE RESEARCH A new study from the University of Georgia found that hookworms are developing resistance to all drugs approved by the FDA to treat the infection. The report concludes that multidrug-resistant hookworms will eventually become the predominant variety found in places where dewormers are frequently used, like farms and kennels. Researchers said these hookworms do appear to be vulnerable to emodepside, a dewormer that the FDA has approved for use in cats but not in dogs. (Vet Advantage – SlashGear)
  • US – PET LEGISLATION California has enacted a law aiming to prevent emotional support animals from being misrepresented as service animals. Under the new law, sellers will have to clearly stipulate that emotional support dogs are not service dogs and don’t have the same legal rights and privileges as guide, signal or service dogs. Health care practitioners writing documentation related to a person’s need for an emotional support dog will have to warn prospective owners that misrepresenting themselves as service dog owners is a misdemeanor. (Vet Advantage)
  • UK – SALMON RESEARCH The Roslin Institute – in partnership with Hendrix Genetics, the University of Stirling, Uppsala University and the UK Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science – has used gene-editing technology to identify a gene that affects resistance to a viral disease in Atlantic salmon. The discovery will provide understanding of why some salmon are resistant and others are susceptible to infectious pancreatic necrosis virus (IPNV). The research was published in Genomics (IHS Markit Connect)
  • WORLD – TRYPANOSOMA RESEARCH The COMBAT project has been launched to improve knowledge of animal trypanosomes; develop control tools; consolidate surveillance, diagnosis and control networks by setting up harmonized epidemiological information systems and national and regional control strategies; and strengthen the capacity of African livestock farmers and veterinary services to tackle the disease, while raising awareness among policy makers concerned with food security and poverty reduction. The four-year project involves 21 consortium partners and is funded by EUR 5.9 million ($6.9 million) from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 program. (IHS Markit Connect)


This week we’ll focus on the feedback from our weekly question in the “Your View” section: last week’s question dealt with team cohesion.  The results were rather clear, and also concerning.  We asked you to rate your team’s cohesion as of March 2020 (when the pandemic set in) and also rate it as of today.  64% of respondents felt that it is strong today, compared with 84% who rated their team cohesion as having been strong in March of 2020.  A 20% drop is substantial, and may mean that time spent to rebuild teams in 2021/22 will be time well spent.

No one of us should be surprised that our perception of team cohesion has suffered in the past 18 months.  Whether the team we lead is the staff of a veterinary practice, or a sales and marketing organization, we all know that cohesion comes from regular interaction to build trust and a sense of common purpose.  Perhaps we are all starting to understand that 18 months of remote work – or at least limited “in person” connections – has eroded a lot of the glue that held our teams together.  If you’ve ever made light of the fad of team-building exercises that many of us lived through in past years, you might be thinking right now that those activities were more effective than we realized at the time.  How will you nurture and rebuild your team as you transition into a new normal state of work?  Right now is a good time to think carefully and plan your future.

Jim Kroman


Since we’ve raised the idea of planning how your team works in future, let’s get a sense of how you see your team’s working conditions in the next 12 to 18 months.  Is it your goal to return to a working style that is the same as your working conditions pre-pandemic?  Or will you embrace the new remote working landscape and encourage your teams to continue to work as they have in 2021?  Tell us where you want to be on that scale.

How do you see your team’s working conditions in the next 12 to 18 months?

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