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FAO has urged heightened readiness and surveillance against a possible major resurgence of the H5N1 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza amid signs that a mutant strain of the deadly Bird Flu virus is spreading in Asia and beyond, with unpredictable risks to human health.
Merck’s animal health division, formerly known as Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health, has now been christened Merck Animal Health. It will be known as MSD Animal Health outside the United States and Canada.
“The name change reflects Merck’s commitment to animal health and its complementary role to the overall business,” said Raul Kohan, President of Merck Animal Health. “We are unwavering in our commitment to veterinarians, producers, pet owners and society as a whole. We aim to generate additional value and sustained growth by continuing to provide integrated solutions with innovative animal health products and services to meet the evolving needs of our customers.”
Mr. Kohan continued, “With the scientific and business backing of Merck, Merck Animal Health possesses the necessary mix of resources to enhance our position as an industry leader."
Merck Animal Health is a global leader in the research, development, manufacturing and sale of veterinary medicines and vaccines, with a strong presence in biologics and pharmaceuticals. The division generated global sales of US$2.9 billion in 2010.
Hendrix Genetics and Lithgows Limited recently signed a Letter of Intent for Hendrix Genetics to acquire Landcatch & LNS (Landcatch Natural Selection) from Lithgows Limited.
Completion is expected in the first half of 2011 and is subject to various necessary consents.
Thijs Hendrix, Président of Hendrix Genetics, stated, “Aquaculture is a sustainable and valuable protein source all over the world and we are confident we can bring new and innovative ideas to a company with a long and successful track record in aquaculture. Aquaculture breeding is a natural extension to our existing portfolio.”
“Once our discussions started,” commented James Lithgow, Chairman of Lithgows Limited, “it became clear that we share a very similar vision, and we realised that Hendrix Genetics and Landcatch were a natural fit. Landcatch produces its breeding stocks in land-based facilities where they are free from predation and kept in a stress-free environment which ensures high health status. Combining the efforts of our excellent production and R&D teams with those at Hendrix Genetics will make Landcatch and LNS even more effective, and ultimately more successful in supplying superior salmon eggs and juveniles to salmon producers world wide.”
Aviagen, a leading poultry breeding company, has released a series of ‘How To’ guides looking at the hatching and incubation process. This series is designed to be a practical tool for hatchery workers and features the latest technology, research and techniques gathered by Aviagen’s Hatchery Support Team.
The documents are already being distributed to customers and feedback so far has been excellent. The key areas covered are: measuring egg water loss; measuring chick yield; measuring egg shell temperature; identifying infertile eggs and early deads; and break out and analyze hatch debris.
The documents are extremely user-friendly and have been designed to be simple to follow, providing practical advice and tips on how to get the best quality chicks from your hatchery. Another design feature is the handy hanging rings and laminated finish, enabling them to be easily cleaned and stored inside the hatchery itself, rather than in an office, allowing for quick access and reference.
Dinah Nicholson, Global Manager, Hatchery Development and Support, explained, “These new guides give practical advice and tips and include specific details on how to interpret results and make changes depending on the outcomes.
A complete well-formed egg is indeed a work of art. Factors which combine to impart overall egg quality – size, shape, colour, smooth intact shell, internal integrity (albumen and yolk), quality and freshness – encourage purchasers to buy and consume eggs.