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TheBeefSite Newsletter - 10 October 2012

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Wednesday 10th October 2012.

Charlotte Johnston - TheBeefSite Editor

Charlotte Johnston

Editorial: Live Export Debate - What is Best for Animal Welfare?

Pressure is mounting in Australia to end the live export trade, but would this have an ever more devastating effect on animal welfare?

This trade brings in A$1.8 billion annually to the Australian economy, and also creates over 13,000 jobs.

The increase in support for a live trade ban has been fuelled by a number of welfare issues in importing countries.

The situation began, when in April 2011, undercover footage of Indonesian slaughter houses showed severe mistreatment of Australian cattle.

Earlier this year, a combined industry and government effort developed the Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS) - which demands exporters supply evidence that livestock will be handled in accordance with internationally accepted World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) standards.

Despite this, unrest amongst the public continues.

In the last week, hundreds of people have gathered across the country to protest against live exports, after video footage showed Australian sheep being inhumanely killed in Pakistan.

Thirty thousand cattle have been held in an Egyptian feedlot for almost two months after some were found to have hormone growth promotant implants. This week, Egyptian authorities have now decided that cattle without implants can be processed immediately, and those with implants can be slaughtered 60 days after the implants have been removed.

"Forcing Australia out of the live trade would be counter-productive, cutting off a valuable source of protein to the world and undermining attempts to improve animal welfare standards in these developing nations," said Victoria Farmers Federation Livestock President, Ian Feldtman.

However, the World Society for the Protection of Animals has called on the federal government to back the immediate construction of a large processing plant in North Australia in a bid to reduce live exports.

A report due to be released by the animal welfare organisation is expected to focus on the benefits for cattle producers and local communities in switching to an industry centred on producing frozen and chilled "boxed" beef for export.

Whilst animal welfare groups, the public and politicians call for a live export ban, the larger part of the Australian cattle industry is standing firm. AgForce General President, Brent Finlay, said despite some isolated incidents in the Middle East, Australia was helping to ensure positive welfare outcomes for exported stock and must be involved in the trade to continue this work.

"Destructive behaviours aimed at shutting down the industry will only end in countries with little regulation filling market requirements, ultimately creating broad scale animal welfare disasters."

The debate is a tricky one, is the job Australia is doing of improving animal welfare good enough? If they weren't to supply these export markets, who would, and would the prospects for animal welfare deteriorate?

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Optimising the Use of Sex-sorted Sperm in Timed Artificial Insemination of Suckled Cows
Research carried out in Brazil has revealed that the diameter of the largest follicle at timed artificial insemination and the occurrence of oestrus can be used to identify cows with the best chance pregnancy when receiving sex-sorted sperm. Deeper insemination did not alter the pregnancy results in this work.

Feed Inventory Planning
Drought conditions have many producers thinking about what to feed now and well into the future. Not only is there concern about the price, but also availability. With availability comes the question of how much should be purchased now and what will be available later, writes Adele Harty, South Dakota University Extension.

Dangers of Silo Gases
After harvested forages are placed in a silo, they often produce gases during the early stages of the fermentation process, writes Linda M. Fetzer, Pennsylvania State University.

Selling Sustainability? In Search of the Retail Business Case for Sustainable Diets
This report presents the results of a research exercise commissioned by WWF and conducted by Brook Lyndhurst during the latter part of 2011 and early part of 2012. The research was designed to investigate the business case for retailers to further support and promote sustainable diets.

   United Kingdom

Record Prices Mask Rising Costs for Beef Producers
Introducing The Pirbright Institute
NFU Strengthens its Water Resources
Former Agriculture Minister Win Top Prize
Beef Price Difference Between N Ireland and UK - Evaluation Needed
Applications Invited for HSA 2013 Humane Slaughter Award
TB Cattle Vaccine Years Away, Cull Essential
Schmallenberg Found in North England
Levy Board Programme Hit with Farmers
Vigilence Urged as Schmallenberg Virus Shifts North
New Director General Joins National Farmers Union

   United States

Record Sales for US Farm Cooperatives
What Issues are on the Horizon for Livestock Producers?
HSUS CEO Puts Name Forward for Tyson Board
2013 Beef Ambassadors Announced
CME: Serious Declines in Beef Packer Margins
Not Surprising Farm Bill Expired before New Bill Passed
Cattle Outlook: Wheat Plantings Down
No Farm Bill Leaves Uncertainty for Farmers
State Beef Councils Supplement Checkoff Programme Funding
Corn, Soybean Prices Searching for Support
CME: Harvest Pressure Pushes Corn, Soy Futures Lower
Rebuilding the Cowherd: Survival of the Fittest and Alternatives for Forages
Wheat Pasture Grazing Can Provide Benefits
FAPRI Report: Corn Prices Fall Less Than One Per Cent With Full RFS Waiver


Factories and Retailers Warned Over Beef Price Cuts
Irish Day of Action Begins
Irish Farmers Send Message to EU


Livestock Welfare this Dry Season
Weekly Australian Cattle Summary
Overseas Demand a Concern
Aussie Cattle Stranded in Egypt to be Slaughtered
Victoria Supports Live Export Trade
Measuring Greener Pastures
Rib Fat Genetics and Fertility
Live Exporters Could Seek Compensation of $250 Million

   New Zealand

Better Seeds and Plant Species to Improve Efficiencies
NZ Beef Exports Forecast to Increase
Managing in Times of Adversity
Successful Year for AgResearch NZ


Thailand BSE Rule Modification


FAO Food Price Index up Slightly

   European Union

Improving Sustainable Agriculture
EU Farm Leaders Call for Strong, Market Orientated Farm Policy


Japanese Beef Imports Lift 22 Per Cent


What Will Be the Legacy of Canadian E.Coli Outbreak?
NIRS Workshops Helps Get Most Out of Feed Ingredients


French Cattle Supplies Continue to Decline

   Russian Federation

Mapping out Russia's Position in Global Meat Market


Chinese Premier Awarded Agricola Medal

Events / Promotions

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