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US$15.00 (UK£9.00)

VOLUME 31 ISSUE 3 2014

Crops Fight banana leaf bug with the right fungicide

Multiphase feeding is good for pigs Offshore projects can save marine life Ancient farming techniques can protect our future - p29

Indian tractor sales to grow 9% in 5 years Review of FIAAP, VICTAM, GRAPAS Asia

The Philippines braces for El Niño


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Asia’s only broad based agribusiness magazine • Animal Feeds • Poultry • Livestock • Aquaculture • Crops • Machinery & Equipment • Processing • Exhibition Calendar & Market News

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Contents

Bulletin 4

A round-up of key developments in the regional market

Agenda China meat imports to rise 3.500 per cent by 2015, ‘India can export 10 million tonnes of wheat in a year’, South Korea’s poultry meat exports to Vietnam rises in April, Cambodia to rear prawns using Japanese technique, Philippines aiding tilapia farmers with free fin gerlings, Global aquaculture production hits 158 million tonnes in 2012 Photo: www.flickr.com

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Events 9

Preview of Indo Livestock 2014, Palmex Thailand, Risks in Agri Trading: Emerging Market Summit 2014 Review of VICTAM Asia, VIV Europe, CAHE, interpack Germany

Livestock 19

Tech can help turn your pig farms into smart farms

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Edible packaging films can inhibit pathogens in meat

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Indonesia approves blue swimming crab harvest control rule

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Crops 27

Green vaccination: Boosting immunity without side-effects

28

IRRI renews push for rice futures market in Asia

Ensure ‘cracking’ good eggshells

Equipment 30

The latest innovation in agricultural and livestock technologies

28

Moreover 35

Insects as potential animal feed

Advertisers Index Almex b.v...................................................................9

Lubing Maschinenfabrik GmbH & Co. KG ................36

AWILA Anlagenbau GmbH........................................13

Omex Agrifluids Ltd. ................................................23

Compact Seeds and Clones SA..................................7

Technical Systems (Pty) Ltd ....................................17

Eurofeed Technologies S.p.a. ..................................34

Unipoint AG..............................................................34

Scientists decode wheat genome for increased productivity

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Managing Editor : Rhonita Patnaik Editorial and Design team: Bob Adams, Hiriyti Bairu, Sindhuja Balaji Ranganath GS, Prashanth AP, Zsa Tebbit, Nicky Valsamakis and Ben Watts Publisher: Nick Fordham Advertising Sales Director: Pallavi Pandey

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Chairman: Derek Fordham Printed by: Times Printers Private Limited Far Eastern Agriculture (ISSN 0266-8025)

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Bulletin Nuscience expands production capacity in China

Better Pharma sales to hit US$115 million in 2014

NUSCIENCE IS BUILDING a brand new factory for the production and marketing of its premixes, concentrates and specialty feeds in West TEDA (Tianjin Economic-Technological Development Area), China. The new factory will replace the existing facility and triple the production capacity to 10,000 metric tonnes per month and is expected to be operational by mid-2015. Nuscience Group recently held the groundbreaking ceremony to launch its new construction project in Tianjin. Patrick Keereman, CEO of Nuscience Group, said, “With this investment we take the next step in guaranteeing our customers an even higher technical performance by providing the Chinese market with safe and healthy nutrition.”

BETTER PHARMA, ONE of Thailand’s largest animal pharmaceutical producers, expects its sales volume to reach US$115mn in 2014. Chayanon Kittayachaweng, senior vice-president of animal health at Betagro Group, said, “In 2014, the Thai integrated agriculture is not expected to grow. Recently, the Kasikorn Research Centre forecasted the Thai economy to have decreased in the first quarter of 2014. In the second quarter, the Thai economy may grow, but only for one per cent. For the whole year, however, the research centre expects a growth of 1.8 per cent.” He added, “In 2014, Betagro reorganised the group into five business units: Animal nutrition; swine production; poultry production; food; animal pharmaceuticals.” Better Pharma already expanded its business in most ASEAN Economic Community markets, except Singapore and Brunei as these countries do not have extensive livestock herds.

CP Indonesia buys Sierad Produce for US$37.05 million CHAROEN POKPHAND (CP) Indonesia, through its subsidiary Charoen Pokphand Jaya Farm, has acquired Sierad Produce’s poultry breeding and hatchery assets located in Lebak, Banten province, for US$37.05mn to boost its production. CP Indonesia director Eddy Dharmawan said that the newly acquired assets would add to the company’s output by five per cent, particularly for its Day Old Chicks (DOC) and processed chicken products. CP Indonesia aims to produce around 900mn DOC and 96,000 tonnes of food products this year with a total capital expenditure of US$172mn, before purchasing the assets.

Cargill expands its animal feed plant in Vietnam CARGILL’S ANIMAL NUTRITION business recently completed a US$20mn animal feed mill expansion in Vietnam’s Binh Dinh province. One of eight compound feed mills in Vietnam, the expanded facility will enable Cargill to meet growing demand for high-performing feed from its customers in the country. With this expansion, Cargill has invested more than US$110mn in Vietnam’s livestock and aquaculture industry in the last 10 years. “Our investments demonstrate our confidence and commitment to the growth and future of Vietnam’s feed industry,” said Joe Stone, president, Cargill Animal Nutrition’s feed and nutrition business. “Our aim in Vietnam is to create superior value for our customers by providing comprehensive animal nutrition solutions that leverage our global best practices and local market knowledge. Also, we continually invest in our capabilities to ensure our customers always have unique and proven solutions that help them make the right business decisions.”

Muyang changes brand name to FAMSUN MUYANG COMPANY LIMITED has recently announced changing its brand name from Muyang to FAMSUN starting May 2014. This move is prompted by the idea of better illustrating the company’s business and the farm-to-table industry chain it serves. The company said that this is consistent with Muyang’s global strategy and its aim of becoming an integrated solution provider in the agroindustry. Meanwhile, the company will continue to operate in its current structure, provide follow-up service based on relevant agreement, and its business contacts will remain unchanged.

DSM opens new animal nutrition centre in China WITH A SPECIAL focus on enzymes, eubiotics and vitamins, DSM’s new research facility will support ongoing market development by enabling the application of DSM products to address the needs of local swine and poultry producers. It will also produce scientific data to support product and application development for use in global markets. Consisting of a laboratory, office building and modern experimental swine and poultry houses, the centre will enable DSM to conduct trials on Chinese livestock and develop innovative solutions using proprietary technologies. It will also offer space for scientific and technical meetings, as well as customer training and events. Nathan Bird, vice-president of DSM Nutritional Products China, said, “The China Animal Nutrition Center is one of the first privatelyowned research and application centers in China and reinforces our leading position in the animal nutrition market both in the country and further afield. ”

Japanese group to acquire Malaysian dairy firm

The expanded facility will enable Cargill to meet growing demand for high-performing feed in Vietnam

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ASAHI GROUP HOLDINGS will move into a dairy production by acquiring Malaysia’s Etika Dairies by June 2014. The Japanese company plans to turn Malaysia’s second-ranked dairy company into a wholly-owned unit by buying shares from Etika’s Singapore-based holding company for about US$243mn. Etika runs seven production sites in Southeast Asia, including those in Vietnam and Indonesia, and sells products under its own brands throughout Southeast Asia as well as in Africa and elsewhere. Asahi intends to develop dairy-based products for healthconscious consumers and other offerings by combining the group’s expertise in product development and quality management with that of Etika’s. The Japanese company targets Southeast Asian sales of US$980mn in the year ending December 2015, roughly triple the projection for the current year.

FAR EASTERN AGRICULTURE Issue Three 2014 | www.fareasternagriculture.com


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Events 2014 JUNE 9-10

4th International Conference on Asia Agriculture and Animal

Bangkok, Thailand

18-19

Risks in Agri Trading: Emerging Markets 2014 Summit

Geneva, Switzerland

18-20

9th Indo Livestock Expo & Forum

Jakarta, Indonesia

20-21

International Conference of Aquaculture Indonesia

Bandung, Indonesia

I7th Annual International Symposium on Agriculture

Athens, Greece

www.icaaa.org www.agritradingrisks.com www.indolivestock.com http://icai.aquaculture-mai.org

JULY 14-17

www.atiner.gr/agriculture.htm

SEPTEMBER 23 -25 VIV China

Beijing, China

www.viv.net

OCTOBER 14-17

Aquaculture Europe 2014

San Sebastián, Spain

www.easonline.org

15-17

VIETSTOCK Expo & Forum 2014

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

www.vietstock.org

NOVEMBER 3-6

7th International Poultry Conference

Ain Soukhna, Egypt

10-14

16th Asian-Australasian Association of Animal Production Societies (AAAP) Congress

Yogyakarta, Indonesia

11-14

EuroTier 2014

Hanover, Germany

12-14

ILDEX Cambodia

Phnom Penh, Cambodia

24-25

International Plantation Industry Conference & Exhibition

Sarawak, Malaysia

25-27

International Agriculture Congress 2014

Putrajaya, Malaysia

www.sites.google.com/site/7ipcegypt2014 www.aaap2014.ugm.ac.id www.eurotier.com www.ildex.com www.ipicex.com www.iac2014.upm.edu.my/iac/home.php

Indonesia to see the biggest sale of sustainable palm oil in 2014 SALES OF CERTIFIED sustainable palm oil (CSPO) in Indonesia is expected to hit a record high this year due to larger purchase commitments from main buyer countries, according to the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), a group that promotes the production and use of sustainable palm oil. In Q1 2014, CSPO sales rose 48.7 per cent to 506,586 metric tonnes — a new high on a quarterly basis, according to RSPO. RSPO secretary-general Darrel Webber said that the group expected the upward sales trend seen in January-March 2014 to continue throughout this year, resulting in a new sales record. “The significant increase in 2014 will mainly be driven by the food labelling regulation in Europe and national commitments from buyers,” he added. The European Union implemented this year a food labelling rule that requires food manufacturers to specify vegetable oils, including palm oil, they use in their food products. Foodstuff containing sustainably produced palm oil will gain a competitive edge in the 28-member market over similar products made with uncertified palm oil. Many countries in Europe, namely France, Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium, as well as the US, have conveyed their commitment to endorsing palm oil products certified by the RSPO. Webber further said that the positive outlook for this year might also persist throughout next year when big multinational corporations, such as Unilever, P&G and Nestle, would only use CSPO in their entire supply chain. CSPO by RSPO growers reaches 9.7mn metric tonnes each year, representing almost 16 per cent of global palm oil output. The

Indonesia has overtaken Malaysia to become the biggest supplier of CSPO

volume is generated by 1.97mn hectares of certified production area worldwide. Since 2012, Indonesia has overtaken Malaysia to become the biggest supplier of CSPO and now contributes around 47.85 per cent of CSPO recognised under the RSPO scheme. Its certified plantation areas have risen from covering less than 100,000 hectares in 2009 to more than one million hectares in 2013. Desi Kusumadewi, RSPO Indonesia director, said that apart from boosting exports, the organisation would also encourage the absorption of CSPO in the domestic market. Indonesia is the world’s second largest user of palm oil after India.

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Agenda

Food Outlook THE FAO FOOD price index averaged 209.3 points in April 2014, down 3.5 points, or 1.6 per cent, from March and 7.6 points, or 3.5 per cent, below April 2013. Last month’s decline was mostly caused by a sharp drop of dairy prices, although sugar and vegetable oil also fell. By contrast, cereals and meat prices firmed slightly. The FAO cereal price index averaged 206.9 points in April, up only one point (or 0.5 per cent) from March but still 24 points (or 10.3 per cent) below its value in April 2013. The monthly increase was less pronounced than those registered in February and March, as weather conditions improved in the United States and tensions in Ukraine had little effect on the country’s pace of grain shipments. Rice prices tended to weaken in the various market segments, with the exception of aromatic rice varieties, where they remained stable. The FAO vegetable oil price index averaged 199 points in April, down six points (or 2.8 per cent) from March. The slide in the index is driven by palm oil, whose values dropped following reports of lower than

anticipated import demand, most notably from the European Union. Furthermore, Malaysia’s exports have been hit by the persistent strength of the country's currency. Soybean oil prices, on the other hand, appreciated slightly as the market responded to the lingering tightness in global soybean supplies. The FAO dairy price index averaged 251.5 points in April, a sharp fall of 17 points, or 6.3 per cent, over March. The market of all dairy products has been affected by reduced purchases by China (the main importer of whole milk powder and second largest importer of skimmed milk powder) and the Russian Federation (the main importer of butter). Additionally, an extended season in New Zealand and a good start to the dairyyear in the northern-hemisphere have meant that supplies for export have increased. Prices of all dairy commodities subsided, but particularly butter and milk powder. The FAO meat price index averaged 185.8 points in April, 0.8 points, or 0.4 per cent, above March. The marginal increase was a result of stronger prices for pigmeat, in part on concerns over the effect of Porcine

China meat imports to rise 3,500 per cent by 2015, suggest reports CHINA’S MEAT IMPORTS are predicted to skyrocket over 3,500 per cent to US$150bn by 2050 as consumption of chicken, pork and beef surges on the back of the rising affluence of its growing middle class. The increase in meat imports has been forecasted by Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resources Economics and Sciences, Australian government’s agricultural research arm. “The shift from a rice to meat diet has already happened in China. Even small changes in the way China consumes can have a large impact overseas,” said Patrick Vizzone, Asia head of food and agribusiness at National Australia Bank. He said that between now and 2050, China would represent more than 40 per cent of the increase in world food demand. For instance, if China switched just two per cent of its pork consumption to imports, this would equal 10 per cent of the US market and three times Australia’s pork

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Imports of beef have grown sharply since 2010 and are expected to rise to over 750,000 tonnes by 2023/24

production, Vizzone said. China produces nearly all of its own meat. Its output of pork, poultry, and beef rose from about 20mn tonnes in 1986 to more than 70mn tonnes in 2012, with the fastest growth from the 1980s into the early 90s, a USDA report said. It said the USDA was projecting an increase in China’s pork, poultry, and beef output to 90mn tonnes by 2023/24, an increase of about 30 per cent.

Epidemic Diarrhoea virus on export supplies in the US. Although little changed, bovine meat prices are close to historic highs, due to dry weather conditions affecting production in Australia and the US. Prices of poultry and ovine meat were also stable. The FAO sugar price index averaged 249.9 points in April, down 4.1 points, or 1.6 per cent, from March. Prices declined amid reports of large sugar availabilities in the main producing regions, including Thailand, India, and Australia. Generally Dry weather in most producing countries, which should boost the sucrose level, also weighed on prices.

‘India can export 10 million tonnes of wheat in a year’ INDIA CAN EXPORT upto 10mn tonnes of wheat each year if the country is able to maintain production level of about 95mn tonnes as exports is the only ideal option to avoid massive wastage of about 40 per cent grains worth about US$8.5bn, owing to dearth of adequate scientific wheat storage together with slow pace of creating fresh storage space, noted The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) study on wheat production in India. A long-term and stable wheat export policy is the need of the hour as it would go a long way in developing dedicated clientele in the global wheat market thereby helping India in earning much needed foreign exchange, thus issues vis-vis storage, domestic consumption, food security needs, population growth and others must be analysed and a pragmatic view should be taken in this regard, noted the study titled Wheat Economy of India, conducted by ASSOCHAM. Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, South Korea, Malaysia, Nepal, Oman, the Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, UAE, Yemen, Vietnam and African Countries like Djibouti, Ethiopia, Sudan, Tanzania and others are major importers of wheat from India. India should formulate a strategy to corner about 10 per cent share in the 100mn tonnes global wheat market provided right steps are taken to tap this potential in the long run, said DS Rawat, national secretary general of ASSOCHAM while releasing the chamber’s study.

FAR EASTERN AGRICULTURE Issue Three 2014 | www.fareasternagriculture.com


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Agenda

South Korea’s poultry meat exports to Vietnam rises in April 2014

Cambodia to rear prawns using Japanese technique

SOUTH KOREA’S POULTRY meat sales to Vietnam have increased by 14 per cent in April 2014 from last year. The overall exports of agricultural and food products rose due on a large increase in shipments to the US and Southeast Asian nations, the government said. Shipments of farm goods amounted to US$556.6mn in April, up 13.8 per cent from the same month last year, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. Exports to Japan, the world’s single-largest importer of South Korean farm products, gained 3.4 per cent year-on-year to US$110.5mn. Shipments to the US spiked 22.7 per cent year-on-year to US$57mn. “Overall exports to ASEAN countries rose greatly from the same month last year on growing shipments of processed goods, including tobacco and biscuits, and on increased exports of poultry products to Vietnam,” the ministry said. By product, shipments of fresh foodstuff, such as vegetables and fruits, rose 6.3 per cent year-on-year to US$104.7mn. Shipments of processed goods jumped 15.7 per cent to US$451.9mn.

CAMBODIAN FARMERS WILL open three prawn farms this summer in the mountain region using Japanese technique of ‘third water’ for creating artificial river and seawater. The artificial water is a blend of fresh water and a carefully measured mix of minerals, including salts of sodium, potassium and calcium. The project in the Cambodian province of Takeo will be led by Japan’s overseas aid organisation — Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). Roughly 30,000 giant river prawns are to be reared at each of three farms from August in 2014. The prawn sells for eight times the price of fish in Cambodia. JICA will monitor the farms’ efficiency and cost savings. Kenji Kaneko of JICA’s rural development department, said that the water is likely to help spur onshore aquaculture technology in developing countries. Toshimasa Yamamoto, professor of Okayama University of Science who developed the technique, said, “This is magic water that enables aqua farming without chemicals. We can turn a mountain village into a fishing village.” According to Yamamoto, farmers add about 10gm of minerals to 1 litre of fresh water — a mixture that produces a slightly salty taste. This produces a medium suitable for aquaculture that costs 10 per cent the price of traditional artificial seawater. The technique was patented in 2012. To date, tiger puffers and eels have been cultivated with the water. Research has found a reduced incidence of disease because the water has properties that do not exist in nature and lacks the infectious agents often found in seawater and fresh water.

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Agenda

Philippines aiding tilapia farmers with free fingerlings

China, Mongolia and FAO sign MoU on food and livestock management

THE PHILIPPINES’ GOVERNMENT, through the Provincial Agriculture Office (PAgrO), is providing free tilapia fingerlings to fish farmers and communal bodies of water to sustain fish sufficiency and strengthen its fisheries sector. Alexander Domingo, acting provincial agriculturist, said the provision of free tilapia fingerlings is in line with their intention to propagate the abundance of fish in the province. “We still need to strengthen our fishery sector just like our sufficiency status on rice and this is one way of increasing our fish supply for food sufficiency,” he said. This year, the provincial government through and the PAgrO has set aside more than US$3.93mn for aquaculture support services. This will be used for extension support services such as technology demonstrations, trainings, technical assistance, training for deputy fish wardens, establishment of fish sanctuaries and patrol and surveillance against illegal fishing. PAgrO also allotted more than US$31,832 for the operation and management of the polloc freshwater fish farm. This will be used for fingerling production and dispersal of about one million pieces of tilapia and production of 600kg of marketable tilapia. Domingo said they have already distributed 1.45mn pieces of Tilapia fingerlings to communal bodies of water and backyard fishpond operators.

CHINA, MONGOLIA AND the FAO have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for South-South Cooperation (SSC) tripartite agreement to implement the National Program for Food Security and the National Livestock Program The aim of this agreement is to select and field Chinese experts and technicians who will make up the SSC team and assist with the implementation of the SSC programme in Mongolia. During the course of two years, the Chinese government will closely collaborate with Mongolia in identifying, designing and implementing an SSC program in support of food security through the implementation of the two programmes. According to FAO, technical assistance will be provided by Chinese experts and technicians in areas like animal feed production, horticulture, poultry production, livestock and animal husbandry, bee farming and aquaculture to Mongolia. Agricultural inputs and equipment will also be provided as appropriate for demonstration purposes, with the implementation of capacity development activities including technical training and exchanges, the UN organisation added. José Graziano da Silva, FAO director-general, expressed his thanks to the contribution and support provided by China to the success of FAO’s South-South Cooperation initiatives for the improvement of global food security. ”China has been one of the important partners of FAO’s South-South Cooperation Program since it was launched in 1996,” da Silva said.

Global aquaculture production hits 158 million tonnes in 2012, FAO promotes ‘Blue Growth’ GLOBAL FISHERIES AND aquaculture production totalled 158mn tonnes in 2012 — around 10mn tonnes more than 2010, according to FAO’s latest report. More people than ever before rely on fisheries and aquaculture for food and as a source of income, but harmful practices and poor management threaten the sector’s sustainability, The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture stated. Since 1990 employment in the sector has grown at a faster rate than the world’s population and in 2012 provided jobs for some 60mn people engaged in capture fisheries and aquaculture. Of these, 84 per cent were employed in Asia, followed by Africa with about 10 per cent. The rapid expansion of aquaculture, including the activities of small-scale farmers, is driving this growth in production, the report added. Fish farming holds tremendous promise in responding to surging demand for food which is taking place due to global population growth, the report says. At the same time, the planet’s oceans — if sustainably managed — have an important role to play in providing jobs and feeding the world. “The health of our planet as well as our own health and future food security all hinge on how we treat the blue world,” FAO director-

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Global aquaculture production marked a record high of more than 90mn tonnes in 2012, including almost 24mn tonnes of aquatic plants

general José Graziano da Silva said. “We need to ensure that environmental wellbeing is compatible with human well-being in order to make long-term sustainable prosperity a reality for all. For this reason, FAO is committed to promoting ‘Blue Growth,’ which is based on the sustainable and responsible management of our aquatic resources.” The renewed focus on the so-called ‘Blue world’ comes as the share of fisheries production used by humans for food has increased from about 70 per cent in the 1980s to a record high of more than 85 per cent (136mn tonnes) in 2012. At the same time per capita fish consumption has soared from 10kg in the 1960s to more than 19 kg in 2012. The new report also says fish now accounts

for almost 17 per cent of the global population’s intake of protein — in some coastal and island countries it can top 70 per cent. FAO estimates that fisheries and aquaculture support the livelihoods of 10 to 12 per cent of the world’s population. Global marine capture fishery production was stable at about 80mn tonnes in 2012, the new report indicates. Currently, under 30 per cent of the wild fish stocks regularly monitored by FAO are overfished — a reversal in trend observed during the past few years, a positive sign in the right direction. Just over 70 per cent are being fished within biologically sustainable levels. Of these, fully fished stocks — meaning those at or very close to their maximum sustainable production — account for over 60 per cent and underfished stocks about 10 per cent. Global aquaculture production marked a record high of more than 90mn tonnes in 2012, including almost 24mn tonnes of aquatic plants. China accounted for over 60 per cent of the total share. However, the report warns that to continue to grow sustainably, aquaculture needs to become less dependent on wild fish for feeds and introduce greater diversity in farmed culture species and practices. — FAO

FAR EASTERN AGRICULTURE Issue Three 2014 | www.fareasternagriculture.com


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VICTAM Asia 2014

VICTAM Asia 2014 aims on effective production The show in Thailand is also looking at creating a free trade bloc of feed meals and technology for Southeast Asian countries ICTAM ASIA 2014 is, by far, the largest and most dominant exhibition in Southeast Asia for animal feed production technology. The fair concluded recently on 10 April 2014 at BITEC exhibition centre in Bangkok, Thailand. It was held along with FIAAP and GRAPAS Asia under one roof. Visitors from around the world descended at the three-day event to witness the growing technology for safe and effective production of feed for animals and aquaculture. VICTAM is also the industry showpiece for biomass pelleting technology, which is seen as the alternative green energy source around the world. The Thai government has set an ambitious target to have 25 per cent of the national energy consumption met with renewable energy sources by 2021. Biomass is expected to account for the largest share and be developed in all three sectors, heat, power and transportation fuels. Much of the biomass generated is expected to come from agriculture and downstream food and feed processing industries. Thailand is the world’s largest exporter of cassava and tapioca products. Organised by Victam International BV, the event saw more than 220 exhibitors and over 6,000 visitors. Innovative awards were presented

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companies for accomplishment in their area of expertise. The Aquafeed Innovation Award was won by Norvidan for their NODS — Norvidan On-line Density System; FUMzyme, a purified enzyme from Biomin to detoxify mycotoxins in animals has won the FIAAP Animal Nutrition Award. The runner-up was Kemin with its multienzyme product; 4B Braime Elevator Components won the GRAPAS Award with their Hazardmon product. Recommended were Morillon for its Super SHG Hydrascrew and Buhler for Combistoner.

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www.fareasternagriculture.com | FAR EASTERN AGRICULTURE Issue Three 2014

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VICTAM Asia 2014

Far Eastern Agriculture spoke with organising committee member Andrew West, who was upbeat about the whole show. West said that VICTAM Asia 2014 has seen a marked increase in the number of overseas visitors. “Our objective has been to maintain and increase quality. This event is a precursor to VICTAM International 2015. We have received many applications for the show next year. This year we have given attention to each ASEAN country for participation.” The show was also a platform for various other symposiums like Aquafeed Horizons Asia 2014 and FIAAP Conference 2014 by Linx Conferences, GRAPAS Asia Conference 2014 by Perendale Publishers, etc. Focusing on the Southeast Asian market, West noted, “It is the aim of the ASEAN Community to create a Free Trade Bloc (FTB) in the region. He said that FTB is important to rice and feed millers and would have a great implication on the region. The idea is to look forward to 2015, the proposed date for the introduction of the FTB.” To bring about a greater awareness about feed, rice and related industries, Victam International BV had invited senior executives from the ADB, the ASEAN Secretariat and Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) to VICTAM Asia 2014, Mario Sergio Cutait, chairman of the International Feed Industry Federation (IFIF) was also present. The rising number of international participants brought in lot of new equipment and knowledge-sharing to the region. Few of

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the companies that evoked interest and grabbed eyeballs are ANDRITZ Feed Technologies, AWILA Anlagenbau GmbH, Biomin Singapore Pte Ltd, Buhler AG, DSM, Kemin Industries (Asia) Pte. Ltd, Muyang, Ottevanger Milling Engineers B.V, Probatch, SCE - Silo Construction & Engineering, SKIOLD, Unipoint AG, Zheng Chang, etc. Southeast Asia market is a growing market and countries like Thailand, Vietnam and Myanmar have the potential to be feed market leaders, However, West said that it also depends on their economies and base products availability. Talking about VICTAM International 2016 vision, the organiser said that they want to move forward and increase the influence of the feed market in Asia to adopt International

“It is the aim of the ASEAN Community to create a Free Trade Bloc (FTB) in the region. He said that FTB is important to rice and feed millers and would have a great implication on the region.” — Andrew West, member of VIV International organising committee

standards. They also want to focus on teaching feed technique and maintain quality to maximise growth in Southeast Asian countries. The exhibition was supported by different conferences: FIAAP Conference, which focussed on animal feed ingredients and additives; Petfood Forum Asia, focussing on petfood production technology and ingredients, Aquafeed Horizons Asia, which focussed on aquafeed production technology and ingredients; and GRAPAS Conference, which talked about rice milling technology, grain storage, transportation & preservation. The event also held the first ASEAN Feed & Rice Symposium. Featuring speakers like Tran Dong Phuong, director for Finance, Industry and Infrastructure, ASEAN Economic Department, Thamana Lekprichakul, programme coordinator working group on Agriculture Secretariat Asian Development Bank and Vinod Ahuja, livestock policy officer, FAO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, the conference focussed on securing food grains in the region. With rice being the common staple food in ASEAN, the agriculture sector is closely linked to food security situation in the region. This has made ASEAN even more committed to strengthen its agriculture sector and to produce more food with fewer resources. Phuong said that sustainable agriculture with a more systemic approach will better preserve or restore natural resources and increase the resilience of farming systems. He added that from trading side, rice has

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VICTAM Asia 2014

been a major commodity for ASEAN. Several hundred millions of people in the region benefit, one way or another, from the value chain of rice-related economic activities — from farmers to millers, to wholesalers, and to exporters. This results in ASEAN being the world’s largest rice exporting region with annual export volume constituting approximately 55 per cent of the global rice trade. From the food security standpoint, rice has also plays a significant role as the region’s staple food for the ASEAN countries. This is clearly evident from the fact that rice has always been the major source of energy food for people in all the ASEAN countries. Moreover, with relatively abundant regional rice supply as compared to internally-consumed regional demand, ASEAN’s rice is served as the world food security as well. Phuong said that ASEAN has made significant progress in terms of trade in goods liberalisation. By end-2013, most of the commodities scheduled for liberalisation under the ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement (ATIGA) already reached zero tariffs. Along with the success of tariff liberalisation, significant progress has also been made in improving and promoting trade facilitation through customs modernisation, establishment of an ASEAN single window and harmonisation of standards and conformance. To further eliminate non-tariff barriers (NTBs), work was exerted to realign the ASEAN Non-Tariff Measures (NTMs) database with the new UNCTAD Classification and to establish an interagency body at the national level to

complement regional initiatives on NTMs. For the year 2015, the speakers said that the region needs to strengthen the capacity of human resource of related agencies and regional bodies to compile, monitor and analyse information related to rice, food security, and agri-food trade. Ahuja spoke on the need to fulfil the food demand of expected 9.2bn by 2050. He said that the percentage of cereals will increase in East Asia by 2050. He advised more free trade agreements to secure food supply, establish emergency food reserves and promote food security partnership under frameworks such as ASEAN.

For the year 2015, Southeast Asia needs to strengthen the capacity of human resource of related agencies and regional bodies to compile, monitor and analyse information related to rice, food security and agri-food trade

New products and technologies AWILA: Recently completed a 40-tonne feed meal facility in Nigeria for a private investor. SKIOLD: Introduced world’s first built-in jet filter for mills. Supertech Agroline: Showcased Agrolog TMS5000, a fully automated temperature monitoring system with temperature sensors connected into a digital network and connected to a PC. SCE: Innovated modular square bins for better feed storage.

Next stop Cologne will host the FIAAP/VICTAM/GRAPAS in 2015. The shows, along with a series of technical conferences, will be held at Koelnmesse from 9 – 11 June 2015. 2015 will be the 50th anniversary of the first

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VICTAM exhibition which was held from 26 to 29 May 1965 in Utrecht, The Netherlands. This combination of the three shows together proved highly successful at the last event in Cologne in 2011 when almost 300 companies, from all over the world, came together in what was the largest dedicated international event for the animal feed and grain processing industries. VICTAM International also profiles the expanding and increasingly important sector of biomass pelleting technology. The reason for this being that manufacturers of feed pelleting technology often also produce similar technology for biomass pellets. Germany and its neighbours consume large quantities of biomass pellets, both industrially and domestically. n

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Events

VIV 2014: Bigger, better and sustainable The event focussed on quality of feed for better produce FTER A FOUR year hiatus, VIV Europe highlighted the importance of sustainable intensification of core agricultural and farming processes VIV, the trade show for livestock, farming, animal health and food safety, was held in Jaarbeurs Utrecht, The Netherlands. After four years, the expo returned to Europe, with representation from over 20,000 delegates belonging to 140 countries. More than half of them were from Asia, Africa, Middle East, South America and Russia. Several others were from Germany, Poland, France and Italy, Ukraine and Kazakhstan. There were 600 exhibitors from 45 countries, with their latest products. Ruwan Berculo, organiser of VIV Europe said, “Utrecht will be showing off the latest developments, with the central theme being sustainable intensification.” Sustainable intensification aims to meet the growing demand for better food and develop that in a sustainable manner, throughout the world. Keeping in mind this theme, there was an interesting array of farming solutions at the show. Some of them included smart-farming systems, house heaters, poultry processing equipment for chicken deboning, egg grading machinery, even a Vencomatic nest and a birdfriendly perch. Advanced mechanisation coupled with speedy techniques increases efficiency and productivity. VIV Europe saw various innovations, which aim to make working processes simpler, hassle-free and faster like broiler cages poultry computers, live embryo

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detection methods and even an aerodynamic air inlet, which helps maintain a constant temperature inside hatcheries despite fluctuations outside. Wind-compensating side cabinets for poultry houses was also a muchappreciated product. Processes like chicken deboning are highly common and can be time-consuming. Meyn’s show time focus on chicken deboning emphasised on a variety of product designs, which were also compact. Another important aspect of agriculture is quality of produce, and this can be achieved by understanding what is being fed to the animals. At VIV, an attempt was made to understand if the feed conversion rate changed by split feeding different diets in the morning and evening. Trouw Nutrition presented new precision feeding software linked to its premix programme. Intracare demonstrated a different approach, where an aerosol was used for tissue protection and wound care, reducing the dependence on antibiotics. De Heus Animal Nutrition introduced a new piglet feed programme allowing a smooth and early transition from a premium starter diet to a less costly second-stage formulation. Sonac elaborated on the benefits of a plasma protein powder for pet foods, manufactured from the blood of sheep in order to avoid a possible allergic reaction by the pet to plasma or porcine or bovine origin. “We primarily aim to be a platform for all of the leading technology and know-how in the field of animal protein production in growth countries that currently have the greatest need

VIV Europe provided the platform for visitor and an exhibitor to network

for this. In addition, we of course also focus our range of solutions on major European countries and the United States in order to achieve even more innovative and higher quality livestock, meat and egg production systems in those countries,” explained Berculo. The organiser remarked that there has been a significant increase in awareness towards animal welfare and food safety. It’s not always about being bigger and more intensive, said Berculo. The event went to great lengths to explain the meaning of sustainable intensification through seminars and congresses.

VIV India: A complete feed to meat show VIV India was held in Indian city of Bangalore from 23 to 25 April 2014. In three days, international and Indian suppliers presented feed products for the poultry, fish, dairy and pig sectors. VIV India provided a platform of experience for further business transactions, developments, marketing in international markets. It also created a way to open new avenues for transfer of technologies to the motivated entrepreneurs. International exhibitors included Alltech, Andritz Feed and Biofuel, Buhler Group, Ottevanger, DSM, Biomin, Multivac, Marel Stork, Muyang, Meyn, among others. The expo highlighted the need for investments in crop feed tachnology and processing technology from feed to meat chain. The next VIV event will be VIV China in September 2014. n

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Events

Indo Livestock 2014 strives to live up to its reputation INDO LIVESTOCK 2014, Indonesia's key livestock, feed, dairy and fisheries event, will be held at Jakarta Convention Centre, from 18 to 20 June. The expo is likely to have 530 exhibitors from 43 countries, including seven pavilions from Indonesia, China, South Korea, Europe and USA. Taiwan and Holland are expected to showcase the latest innovations and developments in feed, livestock production, animal health, layer production, egg handling, feed milling, breeding, broiler production, meat processing and meat products. This year, Indo Livestock will be held in conjuction with Indo Feed, Indo Dairy and Indo Fisheries 2014 Expo & Forum. Eminent members of the industry are keen to attend this expo for several reasons — Indo Livestock is considered a complete biennial industry event that covers livestock,

Indo Livestock has proved itself to be the preferred venue for buyers to source for new technology and equipment

feed, dairy and fish industries. There is a significant representation from from Indonesia and the ASEAN region including top integrators, feed millers, regulators, farmers, veterinarians and major industry users. In the past, it has been host to 14,000 trade buyers and offers industry support from Indonesian authorities, institutions and publications. Indo Livestock is also expected to host a series of technical seminars

and presentations, on the latest trends in the agriculture sector. Suswono, minister of agriculture of Indonesia, said, "I have great pleasure to support Indo Livestock 2014 Expo & Forum in conjunction with Indo Feed, Indo Dairy and Indo Fisheries 2014 Expo & Forum. This event will assure you to provide an excellent opportunity for the industry to look at the latest technology and products which includes sharing information on the

latest issues of the livestock sectors and its solution. The previous edition was held in 2012, and had an impressive feedback across segments like exhibitors, visitors and more. The Indo Livestock Report of 2012 stated that 94 per cent of survey respondents rated the quality of visitors as good or excellent and 91.15 per cent of exhibitors achieved or exceeded their expectation on participation.

Palmex Thailand to showcase new technologies for growing market PALMEX THAILAND 2014 is scheduled to be held at Maritime Park and Spa Resort, Krabi in Thailand on 21 and 22 August. The fourth edition of the country’s largest palm oil exhibition is a specialised event, which allows international upstream and downstream palm oil companies and supporting industries to showcase the latest developments in the industry and focus on upcoming trends. This year, delegates and exhibitors from Australia, Belgium, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, UK and USA, stated expo authorities. Targeted exhibitors are companies dealing in palm oil products, equipment and services namely belting, boilers, engineering services, filters, palm kernel oil expeller, palm oil measuring and testing instrument, palm oil product, pumps, seals, packing and gaskets, valves, waste management. In 2013, there were 2,312 visitors from Belgium, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Middle East, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Philippines, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, UK, US and Vietnam, and this year, organisers are hoping for an equally competent and wide presence. The main highlights of the two-day show were the Asia Palm Oil Conference and technology seminars, which helped garner interest in the developments in the palm oil industry. With Thailand being ranked third globally for CPO, it becomes a potential market for new technologies and spurring new equipment to boost sales and productivity, and organisers are hopeful the emphasis on these areas is just as high this year too.

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Events

CAHE 2014: A truly international show in China THE 12TH EDITION of China Animal Husbandry Expo (CAHE) was held in Qingdao, China from 18 to 20 May. There were 152,508 visitors with over 200 exhibitors at the show, making it one of the largest turnouts in the history of the expo. Organisers stated that the show has grown a lot in the past ten years — floor space has increased from 20,000 square metres to 120,000 square metres, the number of exhibitors has increased from 400 to 1250. There were 4,973 booths in 2014, and the number of professional visitors tripled to 152,508. CAHE is not only a showcase to promote the domestic livestock industry platform also livestock industry exchanges and cooperation at home and abroad window, it is China’s hundreds of millions of farmers and practitioners annual event. It was the first time that a separate label represented the international exhibitors significantly. Around 13.7 per cent of the exhibitors were from outside China, and there were ample country pavilions at the expo. Some of the notable stalls were put up by The Netherlands, Denmark and France. The Holland Pavilion, however, was the largest with companies like Nedap, Pigtek, CID Lines, Hotraco, Fancom, Nutreco and De Heus showcasing their latest innovations. The Dutch Meat & Feed Centre, Orange Pig and Orange Poultry had a stage where new products where launched and speeches were held on the Netherlands and its relation with China. Day 1 saw the ‘Golden Keppel’ 2014 China Animal Husbandry Industry, advanced commendation

meeting, hosted by the China Animal Husbandry Association successfully in Qingdao. Important dignitaries of the region including those from animal husbandry industry, the business elite and the mass media attended the event. According to organisers China Livestock Information Network, at present, the domestic and international economic situation is complicated, and China’s livestock industry demand for livestock products in the face of rigid growth, increasing concern about food safety, growing resource and environmental constraints, such as production costs continue to climb the multiple challenges of the situation. To tackle this situation and to achieve steady progress, the national

economy has to achieve steady growth, control prices, adjust the structure and improve people goals to provide important support, they added. The event selected 24 outstanding Chinese livestock industry models. On the same day, more than 50 farm equipment manufacturer and supplier co-sponsored the formation of ‘Chinese pig Engineering Strategic Alliance’ (China Swine Engineering Strategic Alliance or CSESA) inaugural ceremony was held in Qingdao International Exhibition Center, marking the formal establishment of the alliance. Exhibitors and visitors were happy with the turnout, expressing great optimism for the next edition of CAHE which will be held in May 2015.

Agri trading experts set to discuss emerging markets at Geneva event A SELECTION OF leading agri trading experts will converge at a conference in Geneva in June to discuss geopolitical risk and legal framework when operating in emerging markets, as well as economic and supply chain risks The ‘Risks in Agri Trading: Emerging Markets Summit 2014’, organised by IRN and

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scheduled to take place from 18-19 June 2014 in the Swiss city, will look at topics ranging from currency and credit risks, to country risk and physical risk. Speakers from a host of major trading companies will be in attendance to offer their advice, including experts from Olam, Cargill,

Ecom Trading, Louis Dreyfus and Export Trading Group. The launch of the event follows three successful editions of the Annual Soft Commodities Trading Summit in Geneva, also organised by IRN. The new platform has been design to accommodate general managers, traders, treasurers, supply chain specialists, trade finance managers, risk management experts, operations managers and logisticians. The event will feature two workshops, onstage discussions on topics such as credit risk and physical risk management, and specific case studies that will focus on key emerging regions. According to IRN, a number of emerging markets in Africa, Latin America, Southeast Asia and the Middle East have booming economies and plenty of natural resources. Many of the markets covered during the conference have the potential to become agribusiness hubs for products such as coffee, cocoa, sugar cane, rubber and grains.

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Events

interpack 2014: Merging the future with the present

In Spring 2017, the motto will once again read “Welcome Home” to Düsseldorf

The packaging and process technology exhibition aimed at not only efficient packaging but also food safety HIS YEAR’S INTERPACK expo was a success, with exhibitors showcasing their latest machinery and also brainstorming with other delegates to find a solution to global food loss and wastage interpack 2014, one of the biggest trade shows for the packaging industry, was held in Dusseldorf from 8 to 15 May 2014. There were 2,700 exhibitors and 175,000 visitors spread across 19 halls of the Dusseldorf Exhibition Centre — a significant and impressive turnout, according to the show organisers. Friedbert Klefenz, president of the interpack exhibitors’ advisory board 2014, said, “We are very satisfied with the quantity and quality of visitors at our stand. The interest taken in our technologies that make a vital contribution to global health and nutrition was enormous. We are pleased with the high number of leads produced, including many top executives and potential new customers.” The organisers were elated with the number of visitors too — 75 per cent of the exhibitors were based out of Germany. There were also a large number of business deals and sales

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conducted during the fair, and it was deemed positive by many exhibitors. Ensuring efficiency of resources for plants and machinery was one of the focal points of the show. Maintaining quality and safety to guarantee perfect and counterfeit-proof finished products — especially in segments like food and beverage, and pharmaceuticals — was also widely discussed. This year’s expo stood out also for heralding innovative themes, which are highly relevant to the food and packaging industry currently. The SAVE FOOD Congress was one such theme at Interpack — where the initiative is to combat food loss and wastage. The dominating themes at interpack 2014 were resource efficiency for plant and machinery as well as for packaging material usage, quality and safety to guarantee perfect and counterfeit-proof finished products – especially in such touchy segments as Food/Beverage and Pharmaceuticals — as well as diversity and flexibility for an ever wider range and shorter product cycles. In association with organisations like Food and Agriculture Organisation of United Nations (FAO) and the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), 110 organisations shared their insights on this topic. The congress particularly showed how the pressing issue of food loss and wastage can be fought across the value chain as a whole. Senegalese

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minister and musician Youssou N’Dour and the former German federal minister Renate Künast were present at the congress, along with representatives from FAO, UNEP and 450 other delegates. Commenting on this, however, interpack underscores its importance not only with the sheer multitude of innovations and breadth of its exhibitor ranges but also with especially innovative themes, adds Bernd Jablonowski, director of interpack & SAVE FOOD: “For a leading international trade fair it is not enough just to rent out exhibition space and offer perfect organisation. Trend themes must be identified, anchored in the concept and finally also driven in a consistent manner. This is the only way to secure thematic leadership in an industry. We have succeeded in doing this very well once again this year. The concepts of both Innovationparc Packaging and the METAL PACKAGING PLAZA were right on target with the target groups.” Werner Matthias Dornscheidt, president and CEO of Messe Düsseldorf, said, “interpack has provided impressive proof of its leading international role yet again this year. This success confirms our fundamental philosophy of addressing the international industries in their respective markets in a very targeted manner — already in the run-up to the event thereby bringing them to their most important event in Düsseldorf every three years.” n

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Poultry

Egg shape is of interest to consumers but vital for poultry producers as abnormal shaped eggs break easily

Ensure ‘cracking’ good eggshells A good outer layer is the indicator of the quality of the albumen inside HE EDIBLE PART of the egg, i.e., the yolk and the albumen, is subsequently surrounded by a ‘dead’ and often pigmented shell of calcium carbonate. This essentially leaves the consumers to judge the internal quality based on shape, dimensions and external shell surface characteristics. However, eggshell quality is usually a good indicator of egg content. If an egg’s albumen is of poor quality then any sound foundation on which to build a thick, strong and quality eggshell is usually lacking. Consumers selecting eggs according to industry standards, governing external shell appearance, are generally rewarded with fresh good-quality eggs with good nutritional composition. Ongoing investment by the poultry industry ensures cost-effective egg collection, handling, grading, packing and transportation. The achievement in speed and packing efficiency without compromising egg integrity and safety requires detailed knowledge of egg shape and shell strength.

in uniform trays for transportation. Abnormallyshaped eggs are easily broken during handling, for the simple reason that they do not fit exactly into the custom-designed trays. Ideal shape is defined by the relationship between the length and breadth of the egg. An index of 75 (calculated as the ratio of breadth/length x 100) is considered to be the best. Egg shape is of less importance when eggs are not packed in containers, and since most eggs in this category go for processing, then shape is of no consequence to the purchaser. Shape is important to consumers of intact eggs. They want the classical egg shape and certainly not eggs which have an ‘equatorial’ bulge that typically occurs in eggs which are broken in the shell gland and partly repaired before lay. Such eggs which incur breakage during shell formation display a bulge around the centre of the egg. Any single factor responsible for bird disturbance in the 10-14 hour period before the egg is actually laid will increase the occurrence of this condition.

Egg shape

Shell quality

Egg shape is of interest to consumers but vital for poultry producers and marketing companies, especially when eggs are packed

Shell quality can be divided into several components, including surface characteristics, and shell thickness and composition, which

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combine to determine shell strength. Egg shell comprises three per cent membranes and 97 per cent true egg shell, which is largely composed of calcium carbonate (CaCO3).

Colour and smoothness Additional and excess calcium carbonate can be deposited on the shell causing a type of splashing or a pink/lilac coloured egg and referred to in the industry as a ‘coated shell’. Such faults are usually the result of eggs staying in the shell gland for a longer than is normal and these will occur most frequently in young laying hens recently into production. Young hens in particular are very susceptible to stress, and any disturbance to flocks will encourage the birds to retain eggs. Two eggs can be in the shell gland at the same time to cause a specific form of rough shell referred to as a ‘target’ or ‘thumb-print’ condition. Same occurrence can also result in hens laying ‘slab-sided’ eggs. Other types of rough shell condition are generally caused by health and nutritional problems commonly related to age of birds and resulting in shells with ‘pimples’ or a very abrasive ‘sandpaper’ like surfaces. Shell colour is determined by the presence or absence of a surface layer of pigment called

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Poultry

Shell quality is directly and closely related to shell thickness and eggs with thin shells simply and inevitably break very easily during transit

Ooporphyrin, with darkness (brownness) of egg shells positively correlated with dark feathered breeds. In some countries such as the UK, there is general assumption that brown eggs are more nutritious than white eggs, although there is not a speck of evidence to support this. That said the shell of some eggs laid by brown coloured laying hens may be very pale coloured or even white and although the effect is purely cosmetic the eggs are inevitably rejected in these markets where brown eggs are desired. Incidence of pale shelled eggs laid by brown feathered birds tends to increase with older laying birds and with some disease conditions. Ironically, there is evidence to suggest that pale-shell eggs from brown

feathered laying hens are more common when the flocks are raised free range. Brown-shell free-range eggs are considered ‘tops’ for nutritional quality in countries like the UK.

Thickness Shell quality is directly and closely related to shell thickness and eggs with thin shells simply and inevitably break very easily during transit. This is a particular problem for eggs produced in hot climates where high temperatures in tandem with high humidity may affect feed intake resulting in hens laying thinner shelled eggs. Shell thickness can be measured destructively (by breaking the egg) and then using a micrometer or be assessed non-destructively

www.fareasternagriculture.com | FAR EASTERN AGRICULTURE Issue Three 2014

using specific gravity measurements. Other factors including porosity of the shell (density of pores), thickness of the membranes, minerals content of the dead shell and thickness of the protein matrix all affect shell strength, but at the end of the day shell thickness is, by far, the most important. Shell strength does not show linear (proportional) reduction with decrease in shell thickness but actually falls much quicker than would be expected. Very few eggs having a shell thickness of 35 µm (micrometres) or more break during transportation while almost all eggs with a shell thickness of 25 µm or less will break during handling and if not then later during transit. Shell thickness and strength are boosted by good nutrition and management but that is not the whole story because shell thickness is 30 per cent controlled by genetic heritable factors. Thin and weak shelled eggs are quite commonly laid by older hens and especially those which are approaching the end of their useful laying life, having often produced a very high output of eggs in the preceding months. When ‘soft’ shelled eggs appear in younger flocks they are often associated with ‘coated shell’ and ‘rough shell’ eggs that have remained in the shell gland for an inappropriately long time. If an egg stays in the shell gland for a too longer period then subsequent ovulation will still take place at the usual time but before the previous egg has been laid. The second egg may therefore spend less time than is normal or beneficial in the shell gland leading to a soft or even a shell-less egg. In such situations a hen may ‘miss a day’ then lay two eggs, one coated and one soft-shelled, on the following day.

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Poultry De-synchronisation of the egg-laying process lasting several days or more can easily happen by not paying sufficient attention to the wellbeing of hens, even if they just threatened with a single and seemingly mild disturbance that subsequently leads to stress. The problem may well end up to be accumulative causing prolonged effects on egg quality and causing a number of different egg shell abnormalities occurring over that period of time.

Dietary Calcium Nutritional deficiencies are also responsible for poor shell quality and since egg shells are predominantly made of calcium carbonate then adequate supplies of calcium-rich feed are clearly required by laying hens. The calcium requirement of the laying hen is complicated by the progress of egg shell formation in the uterus, which relies on temporary supplementation from the skeletal system. The egg shell is formed during the 24-hour period that the egg is inside the uterus. Almost 10 per cent of the shell is secreted around the egg during the first four hours with secretion accelerating and shell formation completed during the remaining 16 hours. Hens are only able to absorb 50 per cent of the calcium ingested in feed and the maximum amount that can be absorbed in 24-hour period is 2.0gm. Egg shells normally contain between 1.6gm and 2.4gm of calcium and research shows that during the final hours of shell formation deposition of calcium exceeds the maximum rate at which calcium can be absorbed from the intestine. Any shortfall is made up by mobilising calcium from the bones. Hens coming into lay should be offered diets which are high in calcium (three to four per cent) or diets with supplemental calcium provided by calcium grit, sourced for instance from oyster or mussel shells. This extra calcium ideally fed ‘ad libitum’ is deposited in the bones (especially the medullary bones), helped by hormonal

Shell colour is determined by the presence or absence of a surface layer of pigment called Ooporphyrin

changes in the hens at this time. Failure to build up this skeletal store of calcium and to maintain adequate calcium in the feed ration throughout the laying period will lead to permanent depletion of skeletal calcium. This strategy is particularly important at higher temperatures (25ºC and above) when temporary shell thinning may occur due to reduced feed intake caused by heat-induced stress. But shells will rapidly regain normal thickness when temperature falls and feed intake returns to its normal level. Serious shortfalls of calcium over a period of time will lead to rapid decline in egg production and eventual cessation of egg lay.

Damaged shells Cracking and damage to eggs post laying is largely governed by poor shell quality, especially in the case of thin shells of low strength which is the most common reason for downgrading. Damage may also be aggravated by inappropriate handling during collection,

grading, packing or transit, but if the two occur together then producers will be literally ‘treading on egg shells’. A trio of egg shell crack types is generally recognised within the industry. The hardest to see and identify are ‘hairline cracks’ especially when they occur in newly laid eggs. Very skilled monitoring and inspection by egg candling is required to pin-point and identify such damage. This type of damage is commonly caused by an egg colliding with a surface that has no ‘give’ (is inflexible). Star cracks, which emanate from a central point of impact, are much more visible than hairline cracks under normal light conditions and very easy to identify during inspection using egg candling procedures. This type of damage is the typical result of one egg impacting on another. So called ‘pin-hole’ and ‘toe-hole’ cracks may be caused by the hens themselves ‘stepping’ on or pecking at eggs, or through egg contact with any sharp point or protrusion. There is evidence to suggest that a similar type of damage can occur while the egg is still inside the bird.

Soiled shells Once laid, the egg is subject to contamination with all sorts of organic and inorganic matter including mucous, faeces and blood and dust, mud and litter where birds are not kept in cages. A type of soiling which is particularly difficult to clean from eggs is the so-called ‘glazing’ or ‘varnishing’ effect caused when the contents of broken eggs spill over the shell surface of adjacent intact eggs. Surface contamination not only ruins the appearance of eggs but also raises the issues of health and hygiene. Surface soiling is an important factor contributing to the downgrading eggs. n Ideal shape is defined by the relationship between the length and breadth of the egg. An index of 75 (calculated as the ratio of breadth/length x 100) is considered to be the best

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— By Dr Terry Mabbett

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Livestock

Tech can help turn your pig farms into smart farms The system enables farmers to understand better the well-being of their pigs and represents a new helpful tool to increase food security OW-COST SENSORS AND wireless communication technologies have enabled moves towards smart homes and smart cars. Using similar technologies, scientists involved in an EU-funded project called ALL-SMART-PIGS are now developing technologies that turn pigs’ farms into smart farms. “ALL-SMART-PIGS aims to come up with a package of technologies to make pig farming more profitable while at the same time improving animal welfare,” project coordinator Heiner Lehr, who is a partner with the Barcelona office of Syntesa, in Spain, an international innovation consultancy, said. “We are using sensors to detect animals’ needs,” Lehr said, adding, “And by satisfying those needs more quickly, the payback is healthier animals that grow faster, so it’s win-win for the animals and the farmer.” The technologies have now been installed on working farms in Spain and Hungary. In the latter case, sound monitoring for coughing has, once, already provided an early indication of respiratory illnesses. Likewise, tracking feed consumption and animal weight gain could provide an early warning of health problems. The equipment is designed to generate valuable insight into so-called feed efficiency conversion — a key metric for both farmers and feed companies to evaluate how efficiently animals convert feed to weight gain. Meanwhile, air quality monitoring is aimed at helping farmers to optimise animal welfare. “The big challenge will be in handling a lot of raw data from different devices,” pointed Sjaak Wolfert, senior scientist in agrifood information management and ICT at LEI, Agricultural Economics Research Institute, in The Hague, the Netherlands. “Many manufacturers are not willing to cooperate with perceived competitors,” Wolfert said. Wolfert said that the challenge lay over the governance in relation to who owns the data and whether farmers may be reluctant to send herd information to the cloud. “There needs to be open innovation throughout the business ecosystem — users, developers, everyone needs to be getting added value,” he explained. Such projects require a high level of coordination. “The big challenge has been getting everything to work together and bringing the entire

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A whole range of sophisticated technical devices have been installed in a farm in Northern Spain for a pilot study of the EU project

When the system is installed in this ordinary pigsty and connected to a computer, several cameras, sound monitors, air quality meters, feed counters and weight sensors deliver a daily report on the status of individual animals

supply chain from the feed suppliers to the slaughterhouses on board,” Lehr noted. The project now provides a model to achieve effective collaboration. However, it encountered the practical obstacle of poor broadband quality; not uncommon in rural parts of Europe. “We had to install pretty advanced technology on one of the Spanish farms to allow us to upload the image and sound files,” he added. Talking about investment, Lehr said that sophisticated PLF technologies are already being specified in a number of new, large-scale pig production units at the design stage in various locations around Europe. However, with smaller farms and retrofitting existing units, his instincts are that for the moment, at least, the economic case may have to be supported by the ‘social argument’. Consumer pressure for improved animal welfare is another driver. “In Germany, the UK, and the Netherlands, we are seeing major retailers supporting precision livestock farming as part of a move to quantify animal welfare,” Lehr notes. Other experts believe that some investment in smart technology can be justified on economic grounds alone. “Producers who are really concentrating on improving animal health through approaches like PLF have been getting phenomenal results in terms of increasing feed conversion efficiency, litter size and so on, so much so that some are embarking on modest expansion,” Mike Varely, director of The Pig Technology Company in Leeds, UK, said. “It is now seen as a major driver for improving productivity in the industry.” He agrees that large-scale producers can expect the greatest payback but insists that “even smaller production units will get a return from investing in some smart technologies – if they choose wisely.” As to the adoption of the all-embracing PLF management technologies of the type envisaged by project, Varley says: “It’s definitely where things are headed, but we have still some way to go.” Meanwhile, farmers and engineers have turned a Spanish pig farm into a big brother camp, where the animals are monitored in every aspect of their life. The aim is to optimise farming methods for the benefit of both the pigs and the farmer. Internet Surveillance is often associated with names like Facebook, Google or the NSA, but now also pig farmers have started to use new tools to monitor every aspect of a pig’s life. A whole range of sophisticated technical devices have been installed in a farm in Northern Spain for a pilot study of the EU project. n — www.youris.com

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Edible packaging films can inhibit pathogens in meat ANTIMICROBIAL AGENTS INCORPORATED into edible films applied to foods to seal in flavour, freshness and colour can improve the microbiological safety of meats, according to researchers in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences in the US. Using films made of pullulan — an edible, mostly tasteless, transparent polymer produced by the fungus Aureobasidium pulluns — researchers evaluated the effectiveness of coatings containing essential oils derived from rosemary, oregano and nanoparticles against foodborne pathogens associated with meat and poultry. The results demonstrate that the bacterial pathogens were inhibited significantly by the use of the antimicrobial films, said Catherine Cutter, professor of food science. She added that the research will lead to the application of edible, antimicrobial films to meat and poultry, either before packaging or, more likely, as part of the packaging process. The edible films are an effective way to deliver antimicrobial agents to meats, Cutter explained, because the bacteria-killing action

Edible film is made of a fungus polymer pullulan

is long lasting. The pullulan films adhere to the meat, allowing the incorporated antimicrobials to slowly dissolve, providing immediate and sustained kill of bacteria. In addition, the microorganisms do not have the opportunity to regrow. In the study, which was published online in the Journal of Food Science, researchers determined survivability of bacterial pathogens after treatment with two per cent oregano essential oil, two per cent rosemary

essential oil, zinc oxide nanoparticles or silver nanoparticles. The compounds then were incorporated into edible films made from pullulan, and the researchers determined the antimicrobial activity of these films against bacterial pathogens inoculated onto petri dishes. Finally, the researchers inoculated fresh and ready-to-eat meat and poultry products with bacterial pathogens, treated them with the pullulan films containing the essential oils and nanoparticles, vacuum packaged, and then evaluated for bacterial growth following refrigerated storage for up to three weeks. “The results from this study demonstrated that edible films made from pullulan and incorporated with essential oils or nanoparticles have the potential to improve the safety of refrigerated, fresh or furtherprocessed meat and poultry products,” Cutter said. “It shows that we can apply these food-grade films and have them do double duty — releasing antimicrobials and imparting characteristics to protect and improve food we eat.”

Practice multiphase feeding in pigs for better health benefits and reduced costs PIGS ARE MONOGASTRIC animals which are fed with high-quality diets and in industrial or semi-industrial pork production systems feed costs represent then more than 60 per cent of the overall production cost. Growing and finishing pigs are housed in large size groups/barns and receive the same feed during long feeding periods, even if growth potential and therefore nutrient requirements change overtime. According to a paper in Cambridge Journals, feeding strategies and feed composition have important effects on the animals’ performance and manure composition. Nonretained dietary nutrients are excreted and they represent important economic losses while, in some cases as with nitrogen and phosphorus, they may contribute to increase the environmental impact of pork production systems. Many large pork-producing countries are facing the dilemma of balancing the economic viability of the pork industry with the sustainability of the overall agricultural environment. Theoretically, it is possible to feed pigs with daily feeds formulated to satisfy each day population requirements. These daily feeds will undoubtedly minimise feed ingredient costs and nutrient excretions, but for technical reasons (transport, feed storage), this feeding method is not actually viable.

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However, because the needs for the various nutrients do not evolve in the same manner during growth, the preparation of these feeds becomes a non-linear problem that requires more complex resolution algorithms. Mathematical programming was used in this study to formulate optimal feeds and successfully used to implement a dailyphase feeding system for pigs housed in groups. For example, feeding growingfinishing pigs with the proposed daily multiphase feeding system can reduce without affecting growth, feed costs by one per cent, nitrogen intake by 7.3 per cent and its excretion by 12 per cent in comparison with a traditional three-phase feeding systems.

Daily multiphase feeding can also help reducing phosphorus intake and excretion

The simultaneous formulation of the two feeds required for blend feeding and the concomitant adjustment of the dietary concentration of nutrients to match the evolving requirements of pig populations can be an efficient approach to significantly reduce feeding cost and nitrogen and phosphorus excretion in pig production systems. This approach can also be used in gestating and lactating sows as well as in other farmed animals (poultry, dairy cattle, beef, etc). Other formulation methods are also under study and preliminary results indicates that when the two feeds are formulated simultaneously at variable energy density and without the requirement of being complete, feed costs can be reduced by 5.8 per cent. Furthermore, feeding pigs individually rather than in group with diets tailored daily to individual requirements is also under study. This precision feeding alternative may further contribute to reduce feed costs and improve the efficiency by which nutrients are used by growing animals. Preliminary results indicate that individual tailored feeding can require 25 per cent less nutrients (protein, lysine, etc) than actual feeding systems while their excretion can be reduced by near 50 per cent. In this situation, feed costs are expected to be reduced by more than 10 per cent.

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Offshore renewables projects ‘can save marine wildlife’ A NEW STUDY has suggested that offshore renewable energy projects such as wind farms can help certain marine species to thrive, offering novel habitats to creatures that would otherwise be threatened or displaced. In this partly-EU funded study, researchers developed a new model to predict how offshore installations, such as wind, wave and tidal energy developments, would affect the spread of marine species, such as those off the coasts of Scotland and Northern Ireland, could affect the lives of marine fauna, in particular pelagic larvae such as barnacles, mussels and limpets. They found out that in many cases, the infrastructure provided ‘stepping stone’ habitats, which could help species to settle in areas which they would not otherwise colonise, and can help vulnerable ones recover from the effects of pollution or climate change. However, the research warns it might also have negative effects, as it can ease the spread of invasive species. It, therefore, added that these sites should be monitored to ensure the ecological balance is preserved. Offshore infrastructure is not the only way in which clean energy can benefit wildlife. A recently launched initiative by the BRE National Solar Centre and various wildlife charities outlined guidelines for solar developers that would help turn large solar farms into biodiversity spots, to help tackle the decline of British wildlife. Charles Clover, chairman of the Blue Marine Foundation, said, “We are already in discussions with wind farm companies around the British coast about how they might help with the restoration of native

The study focused on the effects on species which have mobile larvae that drift in the open ocean before settling

species. “One of these is the native oyster, which could do with some help. It might be possible to enhance oyster reproduction considerably by encouraging them to form reefs around the base of offshore wind turbines. “There also seems to be a symbiotic relationship between oysters and bass, which is not understood but would be a worthy subject for experiment. Obviously one would not want to encourage introduced species such as gigas, the Portuguese oyster in the process.”

— Source: Blue & Green Tomorrow

Indonesia approves blue swimming crab harvest control rule INDONESIA’S BLUE SWIMMING crab stakeholders have approved an adaptive harvest control rule to ensure a sustainable fishery in the country, an Indonesian Blue Swimming Crab Processing Association (APRI) official said. The harvest control rule has regulated the minimum harvest size, fishing gear restriction and habitat protection for nursery and spawning ground, APRI executive director Arie Prabawa said. The minimum harvest size that the trade association, fishermen, the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fishery, and the marine affairs

and fishery offices had agreed was 10cm while the escape vent size applied in fishing gear restriction using crab pot was 5.0cm x 3.5cm, he said. The approval was recently made by the blue swimming crab stakeholders in a workshop and socialisation of blue swimming crab harvest control rule in Kendari, Southeast Sulawesi Province. Prabawa said the harvest control rule was widely needed by fishery management strategy toward to sustainability. “The Marine Stewardship Council, an international eco-labelling certification, will

Blue swimming crab production comes third after shrimp and tuna in Indonesia

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recognise the sustainable fishery through sustainable fishery stock, fishery habitat and fishery governance,” he said. In supporting an effective harvest control rule, the management controls were needed by making such efforts as forming fishery management body; conducting public awareness campaigns, community education, and monitoring and surveillance; pushing government support with budget and creating alternative livelihood for the fisheries, he said. About the demand of blue swimming crab — Portunus pelagicus — Prabawa said that it has been increasing significantly in the last two decades, according to Ankara News. Quoting the 2013 statistical data, he said the fishery of blue swimming crabs value amounted to over US$360mn or the third position after shrimp and tuna. “This fishery is intensively sourced across Indonesia by thousands of fishers, and supported by thousands more women at home industries as pickers. It has become the largest artisanal fishery involving most of fishery communities in Indonesia,” he said. In ensuring the fishery sustainability, APRI has launched a long-term sustainability programme called Fishery Improvement Project (FIP). The FIP will be conducted by the Marine Stewardship Councils indicators and principles.

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This aggressive disease quickly spread throughout Asia during the 1960s, into Africa and Central America by the early 1970s and into South America by the early 1980s

Fight banana leaf bug with the right fungicide Research has found that copper can effectively battle the leaf-spot disease in the flowering plants

IGATOKA IS A classic crop debilitating disease causing rapid destruction of leaf photosynthesis and accompanying catastrophic reductions in bunch weight and quality of bananas. Genomics of the genus Musa (banana) is extremely complex but as a general rule desert bananas (AAA genome) are more susceptible than plantain bananas (AAB genome) and vegetable bananas (ABB genome). All are essentially susceptible to severe damage by Mycosphaerella fijiensis (black Sigatoka). Copper fungicide has travelled the complete circle in the control of Sigatoka diseases of banana. Yellow Sigatoka (leaf spot) is caused by longer established Mycosphaerella musicola but the more recent found black Sigatoka (black leaf streak) disease caused by M. fijiensis is more aggressive and damaging. Yellow Sigatoka was first recorded in Java in 1902, then ten years later in Fiji with severe losses incurred in Australia in 1924. By late 1930s the disease was widespread in Central America and the Caribbean Islands where chemical control using copper fungicide began in the 1950s, first with water-based sprays using ground sprayers and later by aerial application as oil-based sprays.

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Black Sigatoka sets the agenda The major milestone was discovery of the more aggressive black Sigatoka, which was identified in 1963 in Fiji and named so for the dark brown or black streaks formed on the leaves. Subsequent research showed M. fijiensis was already widespread across the Pacific region long before its discovery in the island country. This aggressive disease quickly spread throughout Asia during the 1960s, into Africa and Central

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America by the early 1970s and into South America by the early 1980s. In tropical climates, leaf spotting appears eight to 10 days sooner (after infection) for black Sigatoka than for yellow Sigatoka. Where black Sigatoka appears or has been introduced, yellow Sigatoka disappears within about three years. Black Sigatoka has set the agenda for fungicide application throughout the banana growing world. First symptom appears on the lower (abaxial) leaf surface as a pale yellow streak for yellow Sigatoka or a dark brown streak for black Sigatoka around one mm to two mm long. The latter lesion increases in size and subsequently develops into a dark brown to black advanced streak up to five mm to 10mm long with an ill-defined border. Advanced streaks coalesce into so-called young spots with a dark brown to black centre surrounded by a yellow halo. Streaks usually appear within 14-21 days of infection initially along the left hand margin of leaves 3 and 4 (looked at from the base of the leaf to its tip), but also on leaf 2 (counting down from the youngest unfurled leaf) when conditions are particularly favourable for leaf infection. Shape of these necrotic leaf spots varies from almost circular to oval but where mass infection happens the dying and dead leaf tissue assumes a greyish/white colouration which makes the outlines of individual streaks difficult to see. Major infection site for both yellow and black Sigatoka is the heart leaf and first completely unfurled leaf but all leaves are essentially susceptible to the more aggressive black Sigatoka disease. The stage at which leaves are infected will determine the pattern of leaf spotting. This, in turn, is governed by the pattern of leaf unfurling and whether

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infection is by conidia (asexually produced spores) or ascospores (sexually produced spores). And the particular stage of heart leaf unfurling at the time of infection as well as the rainfall patterns and the timing of fungicide application. Infection by M. musicola to cause yellow Sigatoka disease is by both conidia and ascopores the symptoms of which are distinguished as leaftip spotting and line spotting respectively. Leaf spotting is more prevalent towards the apex of the leaf. Conidia of M. musicola are only dispersed by water. Water droplets loaded with conidia falling into the unfurling heart leaves cause various distinct patterns of line spotting. These in turn are affected by the exact stage of leaf unfurling and the particular part of the unfurling leaf surface exposed to the spore laden droplets. The much fewer conidia produced by M. fijiensis are only dispersed by wind and, therefore, do not result in distinct infection patterns. However, heavy infection by ascospores of the unfurling heart leaf produces a distinct line of spotting along the left edge of the leaf.

technique were the use of copper fungicide suspended in oil-based formulations instead of water-based formulations and the adoption of aerial spraying over ground-based spraying. Several reasons were behind the adoption of aerial spraying. Number one was the ability to cover a much larger area in a shorter space of time, which was particularly important given the sheer size of many commercial banana plantations. However, there were other positive factors which soon became apparent as research and development proceeded. Oil-based formulations assist with droplet formation by the rotary atomisers mounted on the aircraft while oil as a carrier liquid reduces in flight evaporation of droplets to maintain their size and momentum for targeted deposition on the banana leaves and minimal spray drift. Furthermore oil spreads easily over the waxy hydrophilic surface of the banana leaf to improve spray coverage while sticking fungicide deposits to the leaf surface, thus improving tenacity and resistance to wash off by rainfall. The petroleum oils used turned out to have a fungicidal capability all of their own and were eventually commercialised and used in their own right (without any fungicide added), as banana spray oils to control yellow Sigatoka. However, in areas like the West Indies where lots of small farmers traditionally grow vegetables in small plots amongst and near to banana plantations there were reports and complaints that oils were causing a wide range phytotoxic effects to a correspondingly wide range of vegetable crops, including tomato, cucumber, lettuce, sweet pepper, onion and cabbages. These reports were supported by observations made during laboratory and greenhouse studies conducted at the St Augustine campus (Trinidad) of The University of the West Indies.

Leaf spotting is more prevalent towards the apex of the leaf

Copper comes the complete circle Copper fungicide has a long history and pedigree for control of these diseases with black Sigatoka now sufficiently serious to actually threaten the continuation of commercial banana production in some countries. Copper fungicide was first used commercially at the end of the 19th century to control downy mildew of grapevine in France and leaf rust of coffee in Sri Lanka. First research and development trials with copper fungicide against yellow Sigatoka disease took place in the French West Indies (Guadeloupe and Martinique) and the Commonwealth Island of Jamaica. This research laid the groundwork for today’s huge worldwide programme of fungicide spraying. First trials used copper fungicides suspended in water and applied by shoulder-mounted low volume mistblowers. The two subsequent big milestones in delivery system (spray formulation) and application

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Positive profile for copper fungicide Copper fungicides are broad spectrum protectant fungicides. Bordeaux mixture (copper sulphate and slaked lime) was the very first product to be used although the particulate fixed copper fungicides such as cuprous oxide, cupric hydroxide and copper oxychloride are now the mainstay in control for copper based fungicides. ‘Particulate’ refers to the formulation (e.g. wettable powder or wettable granule) of discrete particles while ‘fixed’ denotes the sparingly soluble nature of the copper fungicide because the active principle (the divalent copper ion – Cu2+) is firmly fixed in the molecule. This is a crucially important property of the protectant copper fungicide which remains on the surface of the leaf through heavy tropical rainfall to release Cu2+ ions over a period of time. Copper fungicide destroys the fungal spore as it germinates on the leaf surface and, therefore, prevents pathogen entry into the leaf and establishment of infection. Effectiveness, therefore, depends on spray timing and coverage because those leaves or parts of an unfurling leaf that are exposed to infection after spray application are essentially unprotected and vulnerable to infection until the next spray application. However, significant amounts of fungicide may be redistributed by rainfall over the leaf and onto leaves below in drips and splashes running off of the leaves.

Rise and fall of systemic fungicides Increasing interest developed in systemically acting fungicides as they began to appear in the 1970’s, with the benzimidazole (MBC) group, including benomyl, thiabendazole and thiophanate-methyl, among the first on the market. These were soon followed by fungicides from other chemical groups including the morpholines, pyrimidines, triazoles and strobilurins.

Copper fungicide destroys the fungal spore as it germinates on the leaf surface and, therefore, prevents pathogen entry into the leaf and establishment of infection

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Shape of these necrotic leaf spots varies from almost circular to oval but where mass infection happens the dying and dead leaf tissue assumes a greyish/white colouration which makes the outlines of individual streaks difficult to see

Systemic fungicides with translaminar activity enter a leaf [and remain there] to provide protection from the inside for those parts of the leaf which did not receive spray because they were not exposed to spray droplets (due to the stage of leaf unfurling) at the time of treatment. True systemic fungicides enter a leaf and move around the plant to protect other leaves in addition to the one through which they entered. Systemic chemicals are ‘single-site’ action fungicides but this highly targeted and potent fungicidal property has effectively sealed the demise and fate of many. There is now widespread reported resistance in M. fijiensis to the benzimidazole, triazole and strobilurin fungicides. For example, triazole fungicides which are ergosterol biosynthesis inhibitors (steroid demethylation inhibitor’s or DMI’s) target a specific enzyme in the fungal metabolism and stop the synthesis of sterol a vital component of fungal cell membranes. Fungicide resistance to single-site action fungicides is controlled by a single gene (one gene-one enzyme hypothesis). Fungal insensitivity (resistance) to the fungicide will, therefore, develop much more easily and quickly than will resistance to a broad spectrum fungicide (such as copper) which hits a wide range of enzymes in the fungal metabolism. It follows that any resistance to a broad spectrum will therefore be controlled by a ‘bank’ of genes making it that more difficult to achieve, even for a genetically versatile fungal pathogen like M. fijiensis. There have been no reports of resistance to copper fungicides although they have been widely and intensively used for over 100 years on most tropical and temperate crop plants. Widespread fungicide resistance recorded in M. fijiensis has provoked a major re-assessment in chemical control with increased use of broad spectrum protectant copper fungicides high on the agenda. Cuprous oxide, which has the highest proportion of active copper in the molecule and which is generally accepted as the most efficacious of the particulate fixed copper fungicides (on a gram for gram basis), is the one to watch. n — By Dr Terry Mabbett

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Philippines braces for El Niño

The country experienced the worst El Niño in 1997 and 1998, which the estimated damage to agriculture reached more than US$68.60mn

Agriculture experts have suggested ways to minimise crop loss and the government is prepping up rehabilitation methods ITH TEMPERATURES RANGING from 35ºC to nearly 40ºC, the Philippines is certain to experience El Niño phenomenon this year, according to the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), the country’s weather bureau. El Niño or prolonged dry spell is caused by the warming of sea surface temperatures in the Pacific which affects wind patterns and can trigger both floods and drought in different parts of the globe, curbing food supply. PAGASA predicts that this weather aberration may start in June and may likely peak in the last quarter of 2014 until the first quarter of 2015. El Niño is expected to bring below-average rainfall which may disrupt water supply in some parts of the country. Already, the government has called the public to conserve water due to imminent threat of a continued dry season which could take as long as nine months or until early next year. In fact, the water level in Angat Dam, where 90 per cent of residents in Metro Manila get their water supply, including nearby provinces, is

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already hitting critical level due to less rainfall. This situation has prompted the National Water Resources Board to issue a warning to ‘seriously observe water conservation’ as the water level in Angat as well as with other dams may reach critical stage that could severely affect the farming sector and eventually the country’s food production. But more than scarce water supply is the erratic behavior of tropical cyclones caused by this phenomenon. According to the department of Science and Technology, the tropical cyclone tracks are expected to shift northward and intensity could become stronger because of the rise of temperature of seas that could trigger severe rains. Strong typhoons Ketsana (local name Ondoy) and Xangsane (Milenyo) — which caused massive casualties in some parts of Luzon — struck the country as it was experiencing El Niño in 2009-2010 and 2006-2007 respectively. The country experienced the worst El Niño in 1997 and 1998 which the estimated damage to agriculture reached more than US$68.60mn. PAGASA says the same number of

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typhoons (12-20) will enter the country this year but feared to be stronger than the usual.

Mitigating measures Of late, the department of agriculture (DA) estimates El Niño damages have already reached more than US$18.35mn with corn farms as the most affected, with US$13.34mn in losses, involving 28,105 hectares with foregone harvest 45,729 tonnes of corn. The dry spell has also taken its toll on rice farms and vegetable farms at US$5.06mn and US$421,552, respectively. Some 12,200 tons of palay from 4,618 hectares of farms have been lost, as well as 1,190 tonnes of vegetables from 242 hectares of land. According to the DA, the most affected region was Cagayan Valley, which accounted for losses worth US$9.76mn. The Cordilleras reported losses worth US$4.96mn, MIMAROPA (Occidental Mindoro, Oriental Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon and Palawan) US$3.86mn and Bicol US$250,973. Agriculture officials said the government is providing affected farmers with seeds and other

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production inputs as well as promoting watersaving measures among rice farmers and pushing for the adoption of modern farming and fishery technologies to mitigate the effects of the anticipated long dry spell. The prolonged dry season could increase commodity prices, particularly food costs, this year. According to the national economic and development authority, higher food prices of major commodities such as rice, corn, meat, fruits, spices, milk and other food items may see some upward price adjustments because of projected tightness of supply brought about by lower production caused by dry spells in some regions. To avert possible food crisis, the DA has implemented measures to mitigate the impact of prolonged drought on crops. DA assistant regional director Crispulo Bautista said there are already 91 units of water pumps set for distribution to areas vulnerable to drought. Cloud seeding operations are already ongoing in the watersheds of Angat and Pantabangan dams. Cloud seeding is the process of spreading either dry ice, or more commonly, silver iodide aerosols, into the upper part of clouds to try to stimulate precipitation process and form rain. Communications secretary Herminio Coloma says around 15 cloud seeding trips have been accomplished in some major crop producing areas and these operations have prevented damage on some 4,155 hectares of corn farms across the province, of which 3,490 hectares are in reproductive stage and 655 hectares in vegetative stage. He added that authorities have also turned to shallow tube wells and droughttolerant crop varieties to aid farming communities that are most affected by the drought. On the other hand, Senator Loren Legarda has urged the public and the government’s urgent action of Republic Act 7616 which was enacted in 1989 which mandates the creation of rainwater catchment basins such as the construction of water wells, rainwater collectors, development of springs and rehabilitation of existing water wells particularly

The prolonged dry season could increase commodity prices, particularly food costs, this year

in small communities. Although temperatures are always hot, Senator Legarda says occasional rainshowers and thunderstorms can ease possible water shortage by building low cost local materials such as drums or any containers to store rainwater anytime. The national irrigation administration has also received US$13.38mn to fund the rehabilitation programme of irrigation systems nationwide. The added budget is an additional boost to help the agriculture sector ward off El Niño’s wrath. The DA estimates El Niño mitigation programmes to reach US$36.87mn, which will put in place policy interventions, including buffer stocking, provision of seeds, planting materials and other production inputs. DA secretary Proceso Alcala says they have already introduced drought-tolerant rice varieties and other dry weather crops such as sorghum, cassava and sweet potato and along with it the use of water-saving technologies. The national government also advised provincial governors, town and city mayors to use funds available to bankroll infrastructure projects in order to alleviate any adverse effects

The tropical cyclone tracks are expected to shift northward and intensity could become stronger because of the rise of temperature of seas that could trigger severe rains

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of the El Niño. Local government units could acquire to as much as US$340mn to finance their projects to help build irrigation systems, potable water and even power facilities. Although all efforts are being done, the government is hoping that the El Niño phenomenon will not bring massive destruction as it did sixteen years ago just as when the local economy is on the rise and is barely recovering from Haiyan — the strongest and deadliest cyclone in history to —By Gemma Delmo ever hit landfall. n

World Bank tells Philippines to practice crop diversification FILIPINO FARMERS HAVE to diversify their crops to make the agricultural sector more resilient to climate change, World Bank said This suggestion was made recently by World Bank after typhoon Haiyan struck the central Philippines in November 2013 and brought about losses in agriculture worth US$709mn. World Bank Group vice-president Rachel Kyte also asked farmers to use hybrid varieties of crops that were made to survive floods and other extreme weather conditions. Crop diversification and use of technology, she said, will ensure that farmers still harvest some crop even after storms hit their area. The World Bank had loaned the Philippines nearly US$1bn for reconstruction and rehabilitation projects for Yolanda-affected communities. Kyte also said that the Philippines should make use of technology and beef up its irrigation systems. “We have lots of innovation on how to make irrigation systems more resilient so that they don’t silt up and then collapse and they are able to come back to full use and withstand the storm so that they could still be productive afterwards,” she added.

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A TEAM OF international researchers has uncovered a mechanism by which plants are able to better defend themselves against disease causing pathogens. The scientists have identified the key receptor binding a chemical called BABA ( -aminobutyric acid), which boosts plant immunity. The work led by Jurriaan Ton and Estrella Luna at the University of Sheffield in the UK and including scientists from The University of Western Australia, the University Jaume I in Spain and Utrecht University in The Netherlands, has been published in the international journal Nature Chemical Biology. BABA has long been known for its protective effects against devastating plant diseases, such as potato blight, but has so far not widely been used in crop protection because of undesirable side effects. “We have found that the plant receptor binding BABA is an ‘aspartyl

BABA has been protecting potato against blight for a long time

tRNA synthetase’, which we have called IBI1. This class of enzymes play a vital role in primary metabolism of all cells, but had never been linked to immune responses in plants. Binding of the chemical to this protein triggers a secondary function that primes the plant immune system against future attacks by pests and diseases,” Dr Luna said. Dr Oliver Berkowitz, research

associate in the ARC Centre for Excellence in Plant Energy Biology and the School of Plant Biology at UWA, was also involved in the research. “Importantly, our study also revealed that the undesirable side effect of this vaccination, a reduction in growth, can be uncoupled from the beneficial immune reaction,” Dr Berkowitz said. “Since plant immunisation by

BABA is long-lasting, primed crops would require fewer applications of fungicides, thereby increasing sustainability of crop protection. Furthermore, immune priming boosts so-called ‘multi-genic’ resistance in plants. Plant immunity that is controlled by a single resistance gene, on which most conventional breeding programmes are based, is comparably easy to overcome by a pathogen. By contrast, priming of multi-genic immunity by BABA is difficult to break, thus offering more durable crop protection,” Dr Ton said. Although their research has been performed in a weed called Arabidopsis thaliana, the work horse of plant geneticists, the team is confident that their discovery can be used for the protection of crops from their enemies. Proof-of-concept experiments have already shown that BABA is detected in a similar — Phys.org manner by tomato.

El Niño may be beneficial for some crop like soybeans, study finds THE EL NIÑO weather phenomenon that is likely to strike Asia in 2014 will bring damage to maize, rice and wheat yields but boost soybeans, according to a study that could help farmers plan what to grow. The Japanese-led report gave what it called a first global set of maps linking yields of major crops to El Niño, a warming of the surface of the tropical Pacific Ocean that can trigger downpours or droughts around the globe, Reuters reported. The maps are meant to help farmers decide which crops or varieties to plant and may give governments a ‘famine early warning system,’ the study in the journal Nature Communications said. Most forecasts show an El Niño emerging in mid-2014, the UN’s World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said in April. El Niño — Spanish for ‘the boy’ — forms every two to seven years

Soybean yields rose 3.5 per cent, with rainfall patterns favouring big US and Brazilian harvests

and warning signs emerge months in advance. The study said that the mean maize yields fell 2.3 per cent in El Niño years compared to normal in 1984-2004, rice was down 0.4 per cent and wheat 1.4 per cent. Soybean yields rose 3.5 per cent, with rainfall patterns favouring big US and Brazilian harvests. Lead author Toshichika Iizumi, of Japan’s National Institute for Agro-Environmental Sciences, said farmers in Australia were among those who sometimes switched crop plans based on El Niño forecasts. And Indonesia, for instance, advised rice farmers to change planting dates, based on El Niño phases. “I hope the finding of this study extends such efforts to national governments for controlling food storage, building food trade strategy, and earlier application of food aid in food insecure regions,” he told Reuters. The report, however, found big variations for each crop. Soybean yields gained overall, for instance, but fell in India and parts of China in an El Niño year. And maize yields, for example, suffered in the US, China, East and West Africa, Mexico and Indonesia during an El Niño year, but rose in Brazil and Argentina. Robert Stefanski, chief, WMO Agricultural Meteorology Programme, said the regional impacts were most relevant since he said there was “high uncertainty” about global numbers. “It is difficult to develop and use any reliable global impact on global crop production due to El Niño,” he said. “More rain for Indian wheat can be beneficial if it falls during the middle of its crop cycle but if it falls during harvesting, it can be detrimental,” he said. The UN panel of climate scientists said in a report last year that downpours linked to El Niño may intensify this century.

www.fareasternagriculture.com | FAR EASTERN AGRICULTURE Issue Three 2014

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Photograph:

Green vaccination: Boosting immunity without side-effects


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Crops

IRRI renews push for rice futures market in Asia THE PHILIPPINES-BASED INTERNATIONAL Rice Research Institute (IRRI) has stressed the need for establishing a rice index and futures exchange in Asia, in the Agricultural Transformation in East Asia session at the 23rd World Economic Forum (WEF) on East Asia recently held in Manila. The IRRI director-general Robert Zeigler said a well-regulated rice futures market is needed to stabilise prices and increase farmers’ incomes in Asia. He noted that a futures market would allow farmers to sell their produce when prices are favourable. But he added that good storage and port facilities in the region can only support an effective functioning of a futures market and this calls for huge investments by all the countries. The IRRI had proposed for Asia having a rice futures market in 2010, but was not well-received by most of the Asian countries as they feared speculation and obscene profits, said the IRRI DG. But speculation and market irregularities could be averted with proper market mechanisms, he adds. The Philippines National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said that a rice futures market would act as an insurance against risks and ensure a certain level of stability in rice prices.

90 per cent of world’s rice is grown and consumed in Asia

Arsenio Balisacan, NEDA secretary-general, who is also the Philippines Socio-economic Planning secretary, said a futures market in the region would benefit the farming community as well as other stakeholders in the Asian rice sector, whose size is estimated at US$160bn. He added that a futures market will help governments plan ahead and implement long-term strategies for their respective rice sectors.

Meanwhile, about 10mn Indian rice farmers have been given access to climate-smart rice varieties, which includes flood-tolerant ones, IRRI said. Trilochan Parida, farmer at Indian state of Odisha, said, “Swarna-Sub1 changed my life.” Floods ravaged Parida’s rice field every year. In 2008, however, after sowing climate-smart varieties, the farmer saw his rice rise back to life, after having been submerged for two weeks. Swarna-Sub1 is a flood-tolerant rice variety developed by IRRI. It was bred from a popular Indian variety, Swarna, which has been upgraded with SUB1, the gene for flood tolerance. Climate-smart rice varieties are made to especially thrive in environments affected by flooding, drought, cold temperatures, and soils that are too salty or contain too much iron that leads to iron toxicity. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has further said that it will fund the third phase of the IRRI-led Stress-Tolerant Rice for Africa and South Asia (STRASA) project with US$32.77mn for five more years. The STRASA project was initiated in 2007, with its first two phases funded with about US$20mn each.

Scientists decode wheat genome for better yields and increased availability SCIENTISTS IN UK have used their loaves to crack the genetic code of wheat, in a breakthrough that could cut the price of bread. The researchers said that the identification of almost 100,000 wheat genes will allow hardier and more productive strains to be bred through traditional and GM methods. Knowledge of the crop’s DNA also paves the way for more nutritious flour, as well as wheat that is resistant to drought, disease and other pests and problems, and increase availability throughout the world. The project should reduce costs by allowing farmers to breed crops that produce bigger yields, according to Online Mail. Wheat is the world’s most widely-grown crop, with almost 700mn tonnes produced annually, and is responsible for one in five calories eaten globally. Drought and floods in countries across the world in recent years have all contributed to the rising price of a white sliced loaf. Douglas Kell, at Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, which funded the study, said: “In the face of this year’s wheat crop losses, and worries over the impact on prices for consumers, this breakthrough in our understanding of the bread wheat genome could not have come at a better time. As we struggle to confront the challenges of population increase, land degradation and

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Drought and floods in countries across the world in recent years have all contributed to the rising price of a white sliced loaf

climate change that are contributing to widespread food insecurity, it will be vital to understand the underlying genetics of staple crops like wheat.” ‘Vietnam must make agri more eco-efficient’ Eco-efficiency plays a key role in boosting food security and making agriculture more resilient to climate change impacts in Vietnam. This was affirmed in a new strategy for boosting agricultural food security and eco-

efficiency in Vietnam and Southeast Asia, launched in Hanoi recently by the International Centre for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT). Speaking at the launch ceremony, CIAT director general Ruben Echeverria, said that agriculture was important in addressing the challenges of today’s world, including population growth, rapid urbanisation, soil degradation and climate change. The new strategy will be carried out during the 2014-2020 period, focusing on enhancing the effectiveness of research on technology development and improved varieties of cassava and cassava cultivation, improving forage for livestock and achieving sustainable soil management towards eco-efficiency. Cassava is the third most important food crop in the tropics after rice and maize, and CIATrelated varieties bred by local partner institutes are now grown on more than 50 per cent of the cassava area across the Southeast Asian region. When managed properly, cassava is a highly resource-efficient, climate-smart crop, with vast income generation potential for farmers. In Vietnam, exports from cassava and its products generated over US$1.1bn in 2013. Echeverria said the launch of CIAT’s new global strategy was a reflection of renewed research commitments and collaboration with Vietnam’s research organisations.

FAR EASTERN AGRICULTURE Issue Three 2014 | www.fareasternagriculture.com


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Crops

Ancient farming technique can protect our future FAO urges further protection of Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems for sustainability, food security, livelihoods and culture RADITIONAL FARMING SYSTEMS in China, South Korea and Iran known for their unique characteristics and approaches to sustainability have been designated Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) by FAO. They include Iran’s Qanat Irrigation system, an ancient network of farms that have survived for nearly three millennia; a 22,000km system of black stone walls built from volcanic rock in Jeju, South Korea; and the traditional Gudeuljang Irrigated rice terraces in Cheongsando, South Korea. Also on the list are a trio of sites in China — the unique Xinghua Duotian Agrosystem; Jasmine and Tea Culture System of Fuzhou City and the Jiaxian Traditional Chinese Date Gardens. These new designations bring the number of GIAHS systems to a total of 31 sites located in 14 countries in Africa, Latin America and Asia. The sites are considered models of innovation, sustainability and adaptability, delivering important benefits to the ecosystem. The GIAHS Partnership Initiative was launched by FAO in 2002 during the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa. FAO’s deputy director general-coordinator of natural resources Maria Helena Semedo called for designation of more such sites around the world and concrete action to improve conservation of, and sharing of knowledge from, their time-honoured methods. “GIAHS have been forged over centuries, capitalising on the accumulated experiences of rural communities and indigenous peoples across the world,” Semedo said

T

Conservation for a more sustainable future FAO began pilot GIAHS programmes in six countries — Algeria, Chile, China, Peru, the Philippines and Tunisia in 2005. The Steering Committee considered new sites for potential inclusion in GIAHS and held extensive discussions on how to further develop GIAHS’ efforts. They also discussed strengthening and expanding the GIAHS sites and work programme, in order to ensure the safeguarding and dynamic conservation of unique agricultural systems around the world. GIAHS’ work with governments and communities is supported through FAO programmes and grants from the Global Environmental Facility (GEF), International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), government of Germany, and other partners.

Fuzhou is famous for its jasmine due to its favourable climate and its invention of the tea-scenting method

lasting more than one thousand years and including the whole process of domestication of the wild sour jujube to the cultivated plant. Jia County is prone to frequent drought, making the jujube trees “life-saving plants” for local families. The fruit trees also play a key environmental role, preventing sandstorms and conserving water and soil on the sparsely vegetated plateau.

Xinghua Duotian Agrosystem People call Xinghua the “city with a thousand islets,” due to its stunning network of raised, cultivated fields surrounded by water. The Xinghua area was located in low-lying land for centuries and suffered frequent floods from its many lakes. The people of Xinghua built the fields with wooden supports and stacks of mud, turning the ample water supply into an irrigation system.

South Korea: Cheongsando In the 16th century, residents of the Cheongsando group of islands began using local stone to create a system of terraced rice fields that are irrigated by a unique, underground system. Faced with rocky, sandy soil and a scarcity of water, residents built the culverts as aqueducts that could both provide and drain away water. The Gudeuljang Irrigated Rice Terraces are found throughout Cheongsando, a group of 14 islands covering about 43 square kilometres. Farmers from different paddies join efforts in a cooperative-style system to maintain the infrastructure and to make decisions about communal water use.

China: Jasmine and Tea Culture System of Fuzhou City

South Korea – Jeju

Fuzhou is famous for its jasmine due to its favourable climate and its invention of the tea-scenting method. Since jasmine and tea trees grow in different environments, the people of Fuzhou have shaped vertical landscapes in which they are able to grow both tea and jasmine on separate levels and in different microclimates in a vertical landscaping system.

The volcanic island of Jeju is located in the southernmost part of the Korean Peninsula with sandy, rocky soil from which water tends to drain away. People used the stones in the soil to build a more than 22,000km long series of fences as windbreaks and to stem the loss of water and soil, preserving local biodiversity in the process. Protected by the Jeju Batdam walls, agriculture on Jeju Island has survived natural disasters for more than one-thousand years, though it now faces newer challenges like widespread urbanisation. n

Jiaxian Traditional Chinese Date Gardens The Jujube is a unique date species native to China. Located in the Jinshaan Canyon at the middle reach of the Yellow River, the Jia Count is recognized as the place with the longest history of jujube cultivation,

— Source: FAO

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Equipment

Precision farming equipment market is on the rise Analysts predict over 13 per cent growth and willingness of more farmers to adopt to new methods NALYSTS FORECAST THE global precision farming equipment market will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 13.07 per cent over the period 2013-2018. One of the key factors contributing to this market growth is the improved profitability that can be obtained by the adoption of precision farming technology. The global precision farming equipment market has also been witnessing the launch of improved and easierto-use user interfaces, making the technology easier to operate. However, the expensive nature of this product could pose a challenge to the growth of this market. The key vendors dominating this space are Deere and Co., Precision Planting Inc., Raven Industries Inc., and Trimble Navigation Ltd. The other vendors mentioned in the report are AgJunction Inc., AGLeader Technology Inc., IntegriNautics Corp., Schmidt and Sons Inc., and Spraying Systems Co. Vendors in the global precision farming equipment market are increasingly focused on making the tools used in the precision farming process easy to use for agriculturists and farmers. They are focused on providing a better and easier user-interface and innovative features that will help farmers make critical decisions to improve crop yield, turn data into decision enablers, and for environmental protection. The user-interfaces are also expected to allow agriculturalists to integrate time and activity management. Despite the fact that manufacturers develop and promote products that are designed for specific purposes, each product uses a different user-interface. They also provide manuals to users to assist them when using this equipment. Manufacturers are also expected to introduce a better, improved, and easier user-interface in the coming years that will not require the use of a manual. According to the report, one of the main factors driving the market is the improved profitability provided to farmers when using this scientific method of farming. Precision farming uses GNSS, which provides better information to farmers and agriculturists, leading to improved profitability.

One of the main factors driving the market is the improved profitability provided to farmers when using this scientific method of farming

A

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Further, the report states that one of the main challenges restricting the growth of market is the expensive nature of precision farming methodology. The initial investment associated with precision farming is extremely high as it uses advanced technology for farming and satellite systems such as GNSS for data collection and analysis.

Mapping eases Oz’s peanut farming Meanwhile, Australia’s peanut growers are trialling powerful, smart mapping technology to gain accurate yield predictions and deliver a major advantage at harvest time. The project also enables farmers to predict crop disease outbreaks. The programme was developed by Andrew Robson, University of New England research fellow, in partnership with the Peanut Company of Australia, which has about 200 growers, The Australian said. Queensland’s peanut capital, Kingaroy, was chosen as the frontline of the precision agriculture program, which aims to revolutionise farming. Farmers can access interactive maps that incorporate satellite imagery and real-time data, including soil, irrigation, pest and nutrient conditions, to analyse the health and maturity of their crops; develop and shift farming strategies; and submit detailed reports to industry stakeholders from anywhere on the farm.

“The maps we generate not only provide a regional forecast, which is important for PCA, but at the grower levels we convert imagery into yield maps showing the growers high/low growth areas,’’ said Robson, who is part of UNE’s Precision Agriculture Research Group. “They then have the ability to go in during the season and do their own sort of investigation of what is driving that, whether it is soil issues, pest or disease, and then respond with appropriate action.’’ The tool uses geographic information system technology developed by Esri Australia. The maps display yield variability layers derived from satellite imagery using specific algorithms, along with additional spatial information. The technology is being adapted for other industries, including sugarcane, avocado and cotton. Robson said the Australian peanut industry provided a good test case for the tool to potentially be exported to overseas markets including the US. “Growers will seek these yield maps because they have no other way of knowing that spatial variability or production within their paddocks,’’ he said. Queensland produces more than 95 per cent of Australia’s peanut crop, with the main growing areas in the Burnett region, Bundaberg, central Queensland and Atherton Tableland. n

FAR EASTERN AGRICULTURE Issue Three 2014 | www.fareasternagriculture.com


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Equipment

John Deere’s new harvester improves harvest efficiency in China TO FURTHER MEET the needs of the main producing areas of mechanical harvesting of rice and wheat in China, John Deere has introduced a new L70 combine harvester machine to harvest rice, wheat, equipped with appropriate features can also harvestsoybeans, canola and other crops. L70 John Deere combine harvester John Deere PowerTech 4045 is equipped with a turbocharged diesel engine, rated at 74kW (101 hp), the engine under different operating condition, to meet the power needs of the entire harvester. The engine has excellent reliability and durability, effectively reducing the cost of engine maintenance services. Feeding capacity combine harvester John Deere L70 reach 4 kg/sec, can be equipped with 2.75 metres and 3.2 metres rigid cutting platform, 3.2 metres flexible cutting platform that can adapt to different conditions and crops. Cutting table and bridge connection for fast articulated manner, greatly facilitate the users to operate. Tangential flow threshing drum plus horizontal flow separation technology, the new drum unit with a unique bi-directional reciprocating cleaning system to make more thorough threshing and separating, makes operations more efficient. L70 can be equipped with suitable wheat, soybeans, canola and other crops easily threshed grain threshing cylinder rod, but also can be equipped with special spiked in rice threshing drum that rubbing a large area, comb brush strong strike capability. The harvester separates concave field crops according to the needs,

New tool to predict how climate change will affect rangelands UNDERSTANDING HOW CLIMATE change will affect rangelands is crucial as millions of people around the world depend on them for food and income. Now an innovative tool, going by the name G-Range, can help simulate future changes that, in turn, supports climate adaptation, International Livestock Research institute said. Scientists from Colorado State University have just put the final touches on an interesting tool called: G-Range. It’s a tool that can simulate generalised changes in rangelands through time, with simulations that may span a few to thousands of years. More and more people are turning to computer simulation tools when they want to find out what the future climate will look like. For rangelands, which are natural landscapes in the form of grasslands, shrublands, woodlands, wetlands, and deserts, such tools are either for a specific part of the world or very complex, alternatively too simple. Seeing as rangelands support the livelihoods of millions of people around the world and make up about 45 per cent of the world’s surface, there is a definite need to find ways to simulate how climate change will affect these parts of the world as well, the CGIAR body said. “The tool is easy to use, and represents all global rangelands in a single simulation. It can simulate the growth of herbs, shrubs, and trees, and the change in the proportions of these plant types. The tool is distributed with spatial data and settings that let the model simulate global rangelands. Users will likely want to make changes for their areas of interest, but the files that come with the tool will serve as a good starting point,” researchers Randall Boone and Rich Conant said. With G-range you can track changes in carbon and nitrogen in the soil and plant parts. The death of plant parts and establishment, as well as deaths of whole plants can also be tracked, and you can in addition simulate fire in the model. The CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) and the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) provided support to this tool.

L70 John Deere

quickly and easily adjusts the gap to get the best performance gains. Inlet and outlet gap threshing drum concave clearance can achieve adjustment, improve harvest adaptability. Rotogravure separation gap adjustment screw to adjust the way, can be adjusted within the range specified in any position. The L70 has a maximum travel speed of 24 km/h and a shorter transition time. The harvester equipped with a 235-litre capacity fuel tank, can work continuously for more than 10 hours, reducing the fuel supply frequency, so that a continuous harvest is more durable.

Massey Ferguson launches mid-power utility tractors in Australia MASSEY FERGUSON HAS released the MF400 Series tractors, reinforcing its stand in the Australian mid-power utility tractor sector. Two models make up the range at 60kW and 75kW. “There is a demand in the Australian market for a versatile and easy-tomaintain utility tractor,” Massey Ferguson tractor product manager Tim Andrew said. “Many small-sized farms, as well as councils and municipalities, are looking for a tractor to take on additional tasks that would be ideally suited to the MF400 Series, due to its practical features and competitive price tag. “These tractors now provide even higher levels of productivity, greater operator comfort and improved durability and are able to cope with the most diverse tasks and harshest environments.” The MF400 Series tractors have high-torque, fuel efficient Perkins engines and heavy duty transmissions. They come with the option of Rollover Protection Structures (ROPS) or a fully enclosed cabin. Their mechanical transmissions have 12 forward and four reverse gears. The MF400 Series is suitable for front end loader work, with heavy duty rear and front axles and drive units that help get the power to the ground. The lift capacity is 3,200 which is suitable for slashing and grading roads.

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Equipment

Indian tractor market to grow at nine per cent in the next five years A NEW STUDY said that the Indian tractor market, the largest in the world, is expected to see more foreign brands coming in soon because of high growth potential and low loyalty factor among consumers. JD Power Asia Pacific’s maiden pilot study on Indian tractor market predicts that tractor sales in the country will grow at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of eight per cent to nine per cent in the next five years due to low penetration levels and positive consumer sentiment, according to Economic Times. As much as 60 per cent of farmers the JD Power survey covered plan to buy a new tractor within 12 months, and 74 per cent expect increased incomes from agriculture in the next three years. One key finding of the pilot study is that over 80 per cent farmers said they will consider buying a different brand of tractor than what they currently owned, making India a high-potential market for international brands such as Kubota, Case New Holland, AGCO, Same Deutz Fahr and John Deere. The survey was conducted among 3,300 farmers from 100 locations in 10 states. Mohit Arora, executive director at JD Power Asia Pacific, said, “The tractor industry today is where automotive industry was 10 years ago.

Hotraco Agri launches next-gen poultry computers HOTRACO AGRI HAS introduced a new, revolutionary touch screen poultry computer that sets setting a new standard in design, versatility, computing power and user-friendliness. Named Fortica touch screen computer, Hotraco Agri is now focusing on improving a number of facets. The fixed controls and proven algorithms of the current generation of poultry computers have been developed to a higher level and have been added to the software to produce an extremely high degree of reliability. The new software is full of smart functions and corrective checks, as a result of which many of the current operational problems will be a thing of the past, even in abnormal circumstances. The fully intuitive touch screen operation is revolutionary and can be customised by the user its design and is similar to a smartphone or tablet interface. A 3D overview of the housing Fortica touch screen can be compiled with the aid of clear symbols. All texts can be configured and the computer can be set up in any language, including Chinese. The result is an extremely user-friendly and clear poultry computer which, thanks to a PC application, can also be accessed via the Internet any time and place, thus making it possible for the user to access and retrieve all the information on the housing. This completely renewed and innovative touch screen poultry computer by Hotraco Agri gives the user complete control over all housing processes such as climate, feed and water, egg flow and animal weighing. The new PC management programe enables users to optimise the living conditions of the animals as well as achieve considerable cost savings by reducing energy consumption, feed and labour.

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Tractor sales in India rose 20 per cent to an all-time high of 6,33,656 units in fiscal year 2013-14

The market is now getting liberalised and newer players are coming in. The bad news is that the product performance and sensitivity to tractor customers in India is a decade behind.” Arora added that the idea of the survey was to help bridge the gap between the way manufacturers envisage a product and what customer expects.

Vostermans Ventilation’s new fans offer optimal performance VOSTERMANS VENTILATION HAS launched the complete line of Multifan Fiberglass Cone Fans, Multifan V-FloFan and the Multifan Intelligent Fan Drive. With the V-FloFan, Vostermans Ventilation offers the growers possibilities to obtain high energy savings, while improving the uniformity of the animals and creating dry litter. The air is moved from the top of the building by an efficient fan with an aerodynamic shield towards the lower part of the building. The vertical flow fan is equipped with a specially designed hood. The Fiberglass Cone Fans (pictured) are available in direct drive (18-, 24- and 36-inch) and belt drive (50- and 54-inch). Through the aerodynamic design of this fan line, Vo s t e r m a n s Ve n t i l a t i o n offers a cone fan line with an optimal air perfor mance, fan efficiency and air flow ratio. With durability and reliability as an asset, the new line of Multifan Fiberglass Cone Fans guarantees high quantities of fresh air at low cost. The Multifan Intelligent Fan Drive saves extra energy by controlling the speed of three-phase fans. The patented technology, based on frequency control, controls the fans with real-time motor data. At the test farm, significant results were achieved: more than 80 per cent energy savings compared to traditional triac controllers. Especially at minimum ventilation the Intelligent Fan Drive performs outstanding.

FAR EASTERN AGRICULTURE Issue Three 2014 | www.fareasternagriculture.com


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Equipment

New manure app to minimise loss, boost profit

Foodmate’s new electronic stunner makes deboning poultry birds easier

A NEW MOBILE app, designed to help farmers and growers value the nutrients found in manures to save waste and money, has been launched. The FarmCrapApp was developed by the SWARM Knowledge Hub, an online information service, in collaboration with UK’s Rothamsted Research’s North Wyke Farm Platform. The app allows the farming community to appreciate the nutritive and economic value of livestock manures. The app provides farmers with an opportunity to visually assess manure and slurry application rates and to calculate what is being provided in terms of available nutrients, as well as giving an estimate of potential savings in purchased artificial fertilisers.

THE ES-2.0 ELECTRONIC Stunner utilises a new method that eliminates the incidence of internal bruises, broken bones or incomplete bleeding in birds, inconveniences that often occur as a result of inadequate systems of electrical discharge. In addition to delivering an attractive appearance to birds, which impresses even the most demanding clients, the ES-2.0 Stunner also speeds up slaughtering tasks. Slaughter plants that process upwards of 40,000 birds daily and deal with various clients and suppliers will soon achieve higher levels of productivity by using the ES-2.0. The ES-2.0 method is the result of detailed research demonstrating that only an adequate combination of high frequency and low voltage can yield the desired wave form. Working through the new ICAS system, the stunner becomes even more flexible, individually adjusting the current for each bird. Such combination offers improved stunning and does not cause further damage to the birds other than a disorder of their nervous system. The new system featured in the ES— 2.0 offers the biggest number of set-up options in the market. This allows your company the flexibility to make major or minor adjustments in the system, thus making it possible to create a specific system to perfectly fit your slaughtering conditions.

The ES-2.0 caters to chickens, turkeys and quails in a single controller box

When operated accordingly, the ES-2.0 system makes deboning easier. Bruise-free meat is tender, lighter, and does not stick to the bones, which makes meat removal faster. Users of G.A. stunners have reported retention of 5 to 10 grams per bird of the meat previously lost as a result of bruises and broken bones, especially in the breast area.

Android app designed to help farmers in Cambodia

FarmCrapApp is available on Apple and Android devices

Dr Stephen Roderick, manager of the SWARM Hub project, said, “This is a great new development from the SWARM team, providing farmers with a very practical and easy-to-use tool that could have real benefits, and also continuing our core work of converting research and development into practical advice and information for the farming community.” The FarmCrapApp has been created using nutrient values found in Defra’s RB209 Fertiliser Manual along with the Industry produced publication Think Manures. The app contains three features: calculator, an image library and record sheets. The calculator determines the amount of crop available nutrients that are found within manures spread at different rates, helping with decisions on how much to spread in order to meet the crop requirements and also what this looks like.

SCOTTISH STUDENT NEIL Stewart has designed a smartphone app with the United Nations to help farmers in Cambodia by warning on floods and information on crop. ‘Attis’ will provides weather forecasts as well as information about crops such as soil-types, diseases and growing advice, with a messaging service letting farmers connect directly to agricultural experts. “Basically, it provides farmers with information that can help improve their knowledge and problem-solving abilities within farming. It provides specific, accurate and up to date information that is tailored specifically to their needs,” said Stewart, who came to Cambodia in October 2013 and more recently in March this year to meet the people who would benefit from using the app. Ny Sopheak, officer at the department of agriculture in Oddar Meanchey who was given an introduction to the app in

www.fareasternagriculture.com | FAR EASTERN AGRICULTURE Issue Three 2014

order to test it out, said that it could result in Cambodia’s farmers catching up with the rapid development of the rest of the country. “Farmers must develop as the rest of the country and technology progress. They can benefit from the internet; they can find out the prices of everything around the world. Eventually, they’ll be able to start earning more money,” she said. “We can see now that there’s opportunity, given the wide mobile coverage and the increasing use of mobile phones, that it won’t be long before there’s a smartphone revolution among the population in general – and farmers aren’t exempt from that,” FAO project manager Iean Russell said. The app, which can be used on smartphones and tablets, is due to be trialled in remote areas of Cambodia. If it proves successful, development workers hope the technology can be rolled out in other places.

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Send this form together with your remittance to: Far Eastern Agriculture, University House, 11-13 Lower Grosvenor Place, London, SW1W 0EX, UK. Tel: +44 (0) 20 7834 7676 Fax: +44 (0) 20 7973 0076 Subscription order can also be made via the Internet: www.alaincharles.com or email at feag@alaincharles.com

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16 Others: please specify:

4. Type of produce 01 Rice

11 Feedstuffs

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03 Fruit

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20 Fisheries

FAR EASTERN AGRICULTURE Issue Three 2014 | www.fareasternagriculture.com


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Moreover

According to FAO, bees are among the most commonly consumed insects in some parts of the world

Insects popular choice as feed for animals and humans A recent FAO meet documented the benefits of insect rearing and consumption that could lead to food security in future NSECTS AS FOOD and feed emerged as an especially relevant issue in the twenty-first century due to the rising cost of animal protein, food and feed insecurity, environmental pressures, population growth and increasing demand for protein among the middle classes. Insects can provide a sustainable and environmentally-friendly option for animal feed, in addition to already being a mainstay of human diets for two billion people worldwide, FAO assistant director-general Eduardo RojasBriales told an international gathering of researchers in The Netherlands. Rojas spoke during the opening session of the conference, ‘Insects to Feed the World’, jointly organised by Wageningen University and the UN agency. More than 400 participants from 45 countries have gathered for the event that was held in May to examine the current status and future potential of insects as food and feed. “The time is ripe to think about alternative sources of food in view of a growing world population, climate change threats and persisting hunger in many parts of the world,” said Rojas, who oversees FAO’s work in forestry and related food systems and livelihoods. Wild foods contribute to the food security of millions of people living in and around forests and most of the insects consumed by one-third of the world’s people are collected from the wild. According to the UN body, edible insects have always been a part of human diets, but in some societies there is a degree of distaste

I

for their consumption. Although the majority of edible insects are gathered from forest habitats, innovation in mass-rearing systems has begun in many countries. Insects offer a significant opportunity to merge traditional knowledge and modern science in both developed and developing countries. “Certainly insects alone will not solve the world’s food security challenges but it would be absurd not to mobilise their full potential in the fight against hunger and malnutrition,” he added “Raising insects for feed is an environmentally-friendly and efficient way of producing animal feed,” said Rojas. “Insects can be fed on bio-waste, compost and animal slurry, and can transform these into high-quality protein for animal feed.” According to the FAO assistant directorgeneral, recognising the global potential of insects for food in the conference was not to advocate a change in the food patterns of the other two-thirds of the global population that is not used to eating insects, but to ensure that those who consume insects can continue to do so in the future in a sustainable way, and to highlight the different potential contributions insects can make to food security in the future. He added that the challenge of feeding a projected nine billion people in a sustainable way by the year 2050 will never be achieved based on one single measure, but is only possible by a convergence of perseverant measures that complement each other.

www.fareasternagriculture.com | FAR EASTERN AGRICULTURE Issue Three 2014

Insects as animal feed Recent high demand and consequent high prices for fishmeal/soy, together with increasing aquacultural production, is pushing new research into the development of insect protein for aquaculture and poultry. Insect-based feed products could have a similar market to fishmeal and soy, which are presently the major components used in feed formulae for aquaculture and livestock. Available evidence suggests that insect-based feeds are comparable with fishmeal and soy-based feed formulae. Live and dead insects already have established niche markets, mainly as feed given to pets and at zoos.

Tiny champions FAO mentioned bees as a prime example of the variety of ways in which insects contribute to food security. Bees provide honey but they are also the predominant and most economically important group of pollinators in most geographical regions of the globe, supporting pollination of 71 of the 100 crop species that provide 90 per cent of the world’s food. Also, bees are among the most commonly consumed insects in some parts of the world. In addition to raising awareness of the potential of insects in sustainable diets and food production, conference participants plan to discuss a variety of related issues, including datagathering, nutritional analysis, and regulatory and research considerations, among others. Rojas said the international scientific community could make important contributions by generating the right momentum to overcome the still-existing bottlenecks and to unlock the full potential of insects for food and feed. n

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Far Eastern Agriculture Issue 3 2014  
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