News: Middle East / North Africa
USSEC and USSEC member Midwest Ag Enterprises are working together in Egypt to introduce soy protein concentrate (SPC) to a growing aquaculture market. USSEC organized an aquaculture seminar on optimized feed formulation for marine finfish and tilapia. A total of 95 participants attended the event, representing 40 of the top poultry and aqua feed producing companies and opinion leaders in Egypt’s aquaculture industry.
Egypt’s aquaculture sector has been growing at more than 10 percent per year for the past 10 years. Today, the aquaculture sector produces approximately 1.1 million tons of fish, 40,000 tons of which are marine fish. This number is expected to double by 2017 as Egypt unveils plans to establish 2,400 hectares of marine fish farms along the Suez Canal waterline. The project is expected to produce 50,000 tons of fish annually and annual demand for marine feed is expected to reach 200,000 tons. Current marine feed production capacity is only 1000 tons, leaving great opportunity in terms of improving quantity as well as quality of marine aqua feed.
USSEC feed milling specialist Tim O’Keefe met with several of the aqua feed producers to address specific technical questions about the use of U.S. SPC in diets for marine species. Aller Aqua, one of Egypt’s leading quality producers of feed, and Wadi Group expressed a keen interest in proceeding with the production and testing of a soy-based diet containing Nutrivance from Midwest Ag Enterprises. Wadi plans to independently register Nutrivance for importation and purchase feed for a trial with ten large cages of sea bass.
USSEC Marketing Director – Aquaculture/Customer Focus Colby Sutter attended the seminar and welcomed participants. Mr. O’Keefe delivered a presentation on feed formulation using soybean meal and SPC for sea bass and sea bream diets. Jim Moline, the president of Midwest Ag Enterprises, spoke about the nutritional advantage of SPC and USSEC speaker Sirri Kayhan, Regional Manager at Feed Management Systems Inc., concluded the seminar by demonstrating the economic advantage of using SPC to replace fishmeal.
The presentations’ main message emphasized the important potential of U.S. Soy in improving diet quality and performance, consequently providing an opportunity to increase returns for U.S. Soy farmers. Follow-up visits with feed manufacturers underlined the existing interest in marine feeds using SPC. All of the feed manufacturers visited have established projects to produce marine fish feed.
Mr. Moline participated in the follow-up visits and commented, “I am finding great opportunity for Nutrivance SPC in Marine Fish diets in Egypt. I see a quickly expanding marine aquaculture industry and the potential transition of the 80,000 tons of marine fish diets currently using trash feed. I am really excited to be on the ground floor in this market. I am especially excited to prepare shipment of Nutrivance to the Wadi Group to begin its use in sea bass diet formulations.”
USSEC held a poultry roundtable for Maghreb’s feed industry in Maghreb in Casablanca, Morocco from May 10-12 as part of the organization’s FY15 promotion program in the Middle East / North Africa (MENA) region.
The U.S. Ambassador in Morocco, Dwight Bush, opened the conference, highlighting the importance of U.S. Soy in exports worldwide and its contributing value to economy. “The global demand for soy will continue to increase, and North Africa’s feed industry was recently recognized as one of the fastest growing feed regions in the world,” he stated. “That growth is due to the dynamic poultry and milling industries that are represented by all of you here today; and at present, Morocco and Tunisia are the largest buyers of U.S. Soy products in the Maghreb, placing these two partners among the top ten largest export destinations for U.S. Soy products.”
Brent Babb, Regional Director – Europe and Middle East / North Africa (MENA), covered the advantages of U.S. Soy and the importance of international markets such as Maghreb in the soy value chain.
Bob Metz, United Soybean Board (USB) board director, and Willard Jack of the American Soybean Association (ASA)’s board of directors, explained the latest developments in farming soybean crops on their farms to the audience. Sarah Hanson, Agricultural Attaché, and the two agricultural specialists in the Maghreb region confirmed that soy is the leading U.S. agricultural value product in the Maghreb.
The presentations of visiting experts focused on broiler performance developments in the next twenty years, and the resulting requirements in the feed industry. USSEC consultant and professor at the University of Arkansas, Craig Coon, presented integrators, feed and poultry producers’ data showing the advantages of using U.S. Soy as compared to soybean meal of other origins to the audience of traders.
USSEC consultant and director of Food Protein R&D Center at Texas A&M University Dr. Mian Riaz discussed extrusion process and the advantages of different products made of soybeans.
Mr. Babb and his staff, the MENA team and local Morocco consultant Khalid Benabdeljelil organized the conference, which was followed by field visits and meetings with customers in the Moroccan markets.
The team discussed several issues regarding the importance of high quality ingredients in turkey feed during a visit to the Sofalim feed mill. This group will produce at full capacity feed for 60 percent of the turkeys grown in Morocco. Discussions held at Alf Sahel, the largest feed mill in Morocco, focused on extrusion, equipment and extruded soy products and soy oil. Other talks at Alf Al Mabrouk’s new feed mill focused on NIR and other analytical means to assess SBM quality and supply.
During visits, the team highlighted the need to use high quality feed and ingredients such as U.S. hipro meal to obtain top performance.
The Maghreb is the largest market in the MENA region for U.S. Soy products. Last year, Morocco imported over 300,000 tons of U.S. soybean meal. Traditionally, Morocco has imported a large percentage of its soybean meal needs from the U.S. Today, the U.S. maintains a market share in Morocco’s soybean meal market of about 35 percent. 80 percent of imported soybean meal goes to the poultry feed industry. Poultry remains by far the main user of soybean meal in this area.
The USSEC Poultry Training Program for Egypt, Tunisia and Turkey was held April 19- 25 at the University of Florida, College of Veterinary Medicine/IFAS, in Gainesville, Florida. Twelve key veterinarians and managers from the MENA region traveled to the University of Florida to attend the intensive program where disease and management problems affecting their region were discussed in detail. The program allowed for the presentation of new scientific information as well as an exchange of ideas among technical personnel from the participating countries.
At the current time, infectious diseases are devastating the poultry industries in Egypt, Turkey and Tunisia. The need for improvements in biosecurity and changes in the structure of the poultry industry in these countries is urgent. Topics for presentation and discussion ranged from avian influenza (H9 and H5), genotype 7 Newcastle disease, mycoplasma infections, variant bronchitis, biosecurity programs, vaccination techniques and management of the broiler from the day of arrival to the farm.
USSEC consultant Dr. Gary Butcher provided details on his experiences with these diseases in numerous countries worldwide. The event also provided a forum for technical personnel from the different poultry companies and countries to discuss current conditions and programs being implements to combat these illnesses. Participants commented positively on the program and especially enjoyed the roundtable discussion sessions, which provided them with an opportunity to learn more about problems unique to their region and take back knowledge that can be readily applied to their companies.
Attendees also toured a high tech and modern processing plant in Live Oak, Florida owned by Pilgrim’s Pride and the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Florida.
USSEC participated in a meeting at the Egyptian Poultry Association (EPA)’s corporate office in Cairo on March 9. The topic of the gathering was the “Complex Disease Situation in the Egyptian Poultry Industry.” Approximately 40 participants representing all of Egypt’s key major poultry companies attended.
USSEC consultant Dr. Gary Butcher of the University of Florida is an expert on poultry diseases and led the discussion. The main topics of discussion were: Genotype 7 Newcastle Disease; H9 and H5 Avian Influenza; Variant Infectious Bronchitis; and Mycoplasmosis. Options for control and eradication of these diseases were discussed. Egypt’s poultry industry is facing many disease challenges and a better understanding of the treatment and vaccination options is essential if these problems are to be controlled. The deficiencies in many of the current vaccines were described and the need for improved biosecurity was emphasized.