The Experts in Animal Health

Brakke Consulting’s
Animal Health News & Notes for April 17, 2020
Copyright © Brakke Consulting
Editor: Lynn Fondon DVM MBA


Brakke Consulting News
COVID-19: Impact on Pet Care report

Earnings News
Yantai China Pet Foods

Other News
Armor Animal Health
Boehringer Ingelheim
Dechra Pharmaceuticals
Dr. G’s Marine Aquaculture
Dyadic International
Fishman Chemical of North Carolina
Kindred Biosciences
MWI Animal Health
Nestle Purina
Royal DSM
Smithfield Foods
WuXi Biologics



The pandemic that struck the US and the rest of the world in early 2020 is an event that has altered personal lives and business operations unlike any other event.

To help you make prudent decisions during this disruptive period, Brakke Consulting is launching a new 3-wave tracking study, COVID 19: Impact on Pet Care.  The study is based on an online pulse survey of a nationally representative sample of 1,000 pet owners conducted every few weeks starting in May 2020.

The study will deliver 3 reports, roughly 4 – 6 weeks apart, beginning in late May.  The cost of the study is $17,500, with a $1,500 discount for orders placed by April 30.  For more information, contact John Volk at .



  • Virbac SA reported results for the first quarter of 2020. Revenue was EUR 247.7 million ($274 million), an increase of +14% compared to the same period in 2019 (+14% at CER). In the United States, first quarter activity showed an increase of +47% (+42.5% at constant exchange rates). (company website)
  • Vetoquinol Group reported results for the first quarter of 2020. Sales were EUR 103.4 million ($114 million), up 13.7% as reported and up 13.4% at constant exchange rates.  (company website)
  • Yantai China Pet Foods, Ltd. (China’s leading pet food maker) announced financial results for 2019. The company recorded sales revenue of 1.72 billion yuan ($240 million), up 22% percent year on year. Net profit was 79 million yuan ($11 million) last year, an increase of 40% over 2018. (Global Pets

Animal Agriculture Alliance
2020 Stakeholders Summit
May 7 – 8 | Virtual Summit

The 2020 Stakeholders Summit will take place virtually on May 7 – 8 and in a series of pre-conference webinars. Sessions will cover sustainability, animal welfare, influencer engagement, preparing for animal rights activist campaigns and other hot topics.

Attend the Virtual Summit and you’ll be primed and prepared to build bridges from farm to fork. The annual Summit, now in its 19th year, brings together thought leaders in the agriculture and food industries to discuss hot-button issues and out-of-the-box ideas to connect everyone along the food chain, engage influencers and protect the future of animal agriculture. Attendees will leave the 2020 Virtual Summit with the tools they need to take action and be part of any and all conversations that could impact the future of animal agriculture and their business.

For more details and to register, visit



  • The FDA announced that it has approved Boehringer Ingelheim‘s Aservo EquiHaler (ciclesonide inhalation spray) for the management of clinical signs associated with severe equine asthma in horses. (Feedstuffs)
  • Elanco announced it has formally submitted its Form CO notification to the European Commission. This standard part of the process to gain regulatory approval for the acquisition of Bayer’s animal health business triggers the start of the statutory period for the Commission’s review and approval of the transaction. The European Commission will now have until June 8 to make its decision. (company press release)
  • Kindred Biosciences, Inc. announced that it has completed the sale of Mirataz to Dechra Pharmaceuticals PLC for an upfront payment of $43 million, and royalties on worldwide sales. (PRNewswire)
  • ANIMART, LLC announced it is changing its name to Armor Animal Health to reflect a more comprehensive animal health management company following its mergers with Stockmen’s Supply and Midwest Supply & Distributing in 2016 and Animal Profiling International in early 2019. (company press release)
  • Purina announced the launch of Pro Plan Veterinary Supplements Hydra Care for cats, a nutrient-enriched water with osmolytes to help water absorption on a cellular level. With Hydra Care, cats consume on average 28% more liquid each day than water alone. (company press release)
  • VetriScience announced the launch of Cardio Pro to support cardiovascular health and function in cats and dogs. Cardio Pro features 11 active ingredients including L-Taurine, L-Carnitine and Hawthorn Phytosome, and is available exclusively from veterinarians. (company press release)
  • Covetrus announced that it is embedding secure video teleconferencing capabilities across the company’s global suite of practice information management systems (PIMS), client communications, and prescription management solutions. (company press release)
  • MWI Animal Health announced a strategic collaboration to offer Petriage‘s telehealth platform to veterinarians and veterinary practices in North America. (Business Wire)
  • The USDA announced it has approved GVL’s digital Equine Infectious Anemia (EIA) tests for the new testing requirements enacted by VS Guidance 15201.1, which includes using a standardized test form. (company press release
  • TeleVet, a mobile application that connects veterinary clinics to pet owners, has announced that it will offer its platform free for one month to veterinary offices to help offset the impact of COVID-19. (Yahoo Finance)
  • VetCT, a global telemedicine provider, announced it is offering free access to its 24-hours network of 50 veterinary specialists during the coronavirus pandemic. (Vet Advantage – Today’s Veterinary Practice)
  • Royal DSM and North Carolina State University’s College of Agriculture & Life Sciences and College of Veterinary Medicine announced a 10-year partnership to strengthen a range of capabilities in animal health and nutrition. DSM will provide financial support for renovations to existing animal science infrastructure and the development of two new buildings at NC State. The firm will also provide the university with approximately $2.5 million in funding over the first three years of the partnership, with the potential for an increased amount in subsequent years. (Animal Pharm)
  • WuXi Biologics announced a collaboration with Invetx to provide Invetx with its open-access technology platform that allows collaborators to discover, develop and manufacture biologics. Additionally, WuXi entered a non-exclusive research collaboration with Dyadic International, a company focused on applying its C1 gene expression platform to produce improved biological products at a lower cost. (Animal Pharm)
  • Smithfield Foods, Inc. announced that its Sioux Falls, South Dakota, pork processing facility will remain closed until further notice. As of April 11, more than 230 employees had tested positive for COVID-19, out of a workforce of about 3,700 people. The plant is one of the largest pork processing facilities in the U.S., representing 4-5% of U.S. pork production. Plants in Wisconsin and Missouri are also being closed. (Feedstuffs, Wall Street Journal)
  • The FDA issued warning letters to Fishman Chemical of North Carolina, LLC, and G’s Marine Aquaculture, which distribute chloroquine phosphate products intended to treat disease in aquarium fish. Chloroquine phosphate intended to treat disease in aquarium fish has not been approved, conditionally approved, or indexed. Therefore, its introduction into interstate commerce is a violation of the FD&C Act. The FDA is also concerned that consumers may mistake unapproved chloroquine phosphate animal drugs for FDA-approved human drugs used to treat malaria and other conditions. Products marketed for veterinary use, “for research only,” or otherwise not for human consumption have not been evaluated for safety or effectiveness in humans. (FDA)





  • US – AVIAN INFLUENZA The USDA’s Animal & Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) confirmed April 9 the presence of H7N3 highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in a commercial turkey flock in South Carolina. APHIS noted that this is the first confirmed case of HPAI in commercial poultry in the US since 2017, and it appears that this HPAI strain mutated from a low-pathogenic strain that had recently been found in poultry in the affected area. (Feedstuffs)
  • THAILAND – AFRICAN HORSE SICKNESS The Pirbright Institute has confirmed an outbreak of African horse sickness (AHS) in Thailand and identified the virus serotype as AHS virus serotype 1.  This is the first outbreak in southeast Asia, and the first time serotype 1 has been seen outside of Africa. (Animal Pharm)
  • US – ANIMAL WELFARE The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) has filed a lawsuit alleging that the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) violated federal law in December 2015 when it finalized the response plan for highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI). The complaint challenged APHIS for failing to consider measures to reduce the scale of poultry farms as part of the HPAI strategy, and suggested the agency should have addressed concentrated confinement as a central part of the plan. (Animal Pharm)


As I recently wrote here, I’ve learned that “flattening the curve” is a good thing.  I have also now learned that recovering economies can be described by a single letter of the alphabet.  I’ve read about both a “V” and a “U” shaped recovery of the US economy.  I’m optimistic by nature, but I’ve started to worry about an “L” shaped recovery if the societal remedies to COVID-19 are too draconian.

The primary focus of this worry concerns small businesses, which number 30 million, make up about 45% of the US GDP and employ 48% of the workforce in the US.  The $350 billion Paycheck Protection Program, the federal government’s short term lifeline to small businesses, ran out of money in less than two weeks and 22 million are out of work.

How have veterinary clinics, most are small business by definition, been holding up in April so far?  According to national data sourced from from 2,517 clinics, year over year average revenue from services is down 14.2%,  OTC and diet product sales are down 11.4% and pharma sales are actually up 4.5%, which doesn’t include home delivery.  Maybe this indicates a good start to flea & tick season, but pet owners need to start going back to veterinary practices soon.

Small businesses are very sensitive to changes in customer demand and have less cash reserves.  As Gallup’s Sangeeta Badal says, “small businesses keep our communities and lives anchored”.  Let’s not lose our veterinary clinics, small businesses, our anchors.

Bob Jones



Last week, we asked “Have you started shopping on-line and having groceries delivered to your house since the pandemic began?”  Our thought was to see if you were changing your personal shopping habits due to the pandemic.  Some you, only 5%, were using home delivery of groceries prior to the start of the pandemic.  Now, 35% of the respondents to last week’s question said they have started using home delivery of groceries.  That’s a big increase in a short period of time.

This week’s question

We know things will change in veterinary clinics after the pandemic – and you don’t have to be a vet to answer this question.

What will be the most impactful change in the way veterinary clinics service their pet owners and patients after the COVID-19 crisis is over?

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