The PRWIRE Press Releases https:// 2019-05-21T08:40:10Z No-wool week 2019-05-21T08:40:10Z no-wool-week Dear Editor, "Wool Week" is the ideal time for everyone to consider the brutality of the wool industry and resolve to use alternative fabrics. The appalling cruelty in Australian shearing sheds was revealed by a PETA exposé in 2014, and helped lead to the first-ever convictions of shearers anywhere in the world for cruelty to animals. The wool industry told us this a "wake-up call" and vowed to stamp out these abuses. Yet subsequent video exposés (accessible at PETA.org.au) reveals that absolutely nothing has changed. Workers continue to beat, stamp on, kick, mutilate, and throw sheep around while shearing them. Shearers violently punch these gentle animals in the face and beat and jab them in the head with sharp metal shears. These attacks often leave the petrified sheep bleeding from the eyes, nose, and mouth. Many lambs are also forced to endure a gruesome procedure called “mulesing”, in which huge chunks of skin and flesh are cut from the animals’ backsides, sometimes without any painkillers. The best way to stop this violence is by refusing to buy the industry’s products. Check the label when you’re shopping. If it says "wool," just leave it on the shelf. Mimi Bekhechi Campaigns Strategist People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Australia) PO Box 20308 World Square Sydney, NSW, 2002. (08) 8556-5828 Target Sheep event supports Armidale producers in the fight against worms 2019-05-19T21:30:43Z target-sheep-event-supports-armidale-producers-in-the-fight-against-worms Virbac Australia’s latest Target Sheep program event has just wrapped up, with attendees describing the afternoon’s proceedings held last Friday in Armidale, NSW as a golden opportunity to learn more about parasite management, with a special focus on current drench resistance levels in the New England region. The Target Sheep animal health initiative is aimed at optimising the health and performance of livestock at three key stages of the production cycle; pre-joining, pre-lambing and marking/weaning - by focusing on how we can increase productivity by managing drench resistance, and improving health and reproduction through strategic topping up of trace minerals and an effective vaccination program. The program brings together industry experts, veterinarians and producers to improve on-farm productivity and profitability through leading animal health management practices and industry benchmarks. Key speakers at the event included Invetus Parasitology Research Leader, Tim Elliott and Virbac Australia Area Sales Manager, William Hiscox. During his presentation, William explained the importance of the program, based on findings from Faecal Egg Count Reduction Tests (FECRT) that have been undertaken throughout the New England region which have been independently analysed by Invetus Parasitology. “The results indicated that every farm we tested showed a varying level of drench resistance and no two farms were the same,” William revealed. “The results really highlighted the need for all sheep producers to carry out Faecal Egg Count Reduction Test’s and be aware of the resistance levels on their farm. In some cases even neighbouring properties had completely different levels of resistance.” Meanwhile, Tim’s presentation educated producers about worm biology and their life cycle, with tips on pasture management strategies to reduce the seasonal risk of internal parasites specific to the New England. “Drought conditions, such as those currently in the New England region, can make worm management even more challenging,” said Tim. “These types of ongoing drought conditions-with-sporadic-rain events can lead to a much greater variable worm risk, because small rain events can trigger faster more concentrated parasite outbreaks. With there being already high levels of resistance in this particular region, it’s important for producers to tackle this problem head on and tailor a drench program that’s suited to the drench resistance status of their farm.” Almost 20 local sheep producers attended Friday’s event, and Philip Carlon from Queenlee Merino Stud at Uralla explained why he was excited to be a part of the Virbac Target Sheep program. “I think the whole sheep industry needs to be aware of their individual resistance status so we can prolong the drenches we have available and take advantage of the current strong lamb and wool prices moving forward. The Target Sheep group is a step in the right direction for a collaborative approach to fighting drench resistance,” Philip said. With the event demonstrating Virbac Australia’s continuing commitment to supporting producers in the fight against drench resistance, each attendee also has ongoing free worm egg count testing provided by Virbac for the entirety of the program “We encouraged all attendees to continue monitoring their sheep throughout the duration of the program,” said William. “Hopefully this has been a useful discussion for the group, and it’s given them some useful information to now go out and act on.” Virbac will be hosting further Target Sheep and Target Beef events throughout Australia in the coming months. For more information, visit https://au.virbac.com, follow Virbac Australia on Facebook or Instagram or call 1800 242 100. Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 / 0421 935 843 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Adam Arndell - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 / 0403 372 889 adam.arndell@c7even.com.au Expert-led weaner management roadshow tours Tasmania on first leg of nationwide event 2019-05-14T00:55:48Z expert-led-weaner-management-roadshow-tours-tasmania-on-first-leg-of-nationwide-event Two industry experts will shortly be hosting a Virbac Australia Cydectin Long Acting Weaner Management Roadshow at venues across Tasmania, as they present invaluable information to farmers on weaner management best practice fluke and worm control. Dr Matthew Ball (Beacon Veterinary Clinic owner and Livestock Technical Services Manager at Virbac Animal Health) and Dr Craig Dwyer, (Clinical Lead for Apiam Animal Health Group) will be touring the country on the first leg of what’s set to be a nationwide tour of Australia. As Dr Dwyer explains, weaning is a time of increased stress for young animals, due to a range of factors. “Whether from the stress of being separated from their mothers, the loss of milk in their diet or close confinement with other animals in the yard, these factors can take their toll, making calves more susceptible to both infectious and non-infectious diseases.” The recent change of season can also bring increased rainfall, which heightens the chance of an animal being infected with internal parasites like worms and liver fluke, causing a loss of condition, scours and anaemia in weaners up to 24 months of age. Dr Dwyer is convinced that “a good animal health program is the best form of defence once weaners are in the yard, because it gives them the best possible chance for optimal health and wellbeing as they grow.” Together, the veterinarians will take a practical look at various aspects of weaner health and wellbeing, with a particular focus on the best types and compositions of drench, fluke and worm products. Dr Ball explains that “it can be challenging to make sense of which drench is best suited to weaners. Which drenches are ‘knock-downs’ and which protect for longer? Do weaners need the same drench as cows? Which fluke and worm products are best for productivity? Which chemicals are safe for dung beetles? How do you combine different products into a program? What’s the best way to manage or prevent fluke and worm drench resistance? We’ll answer all these questions and more during the course of our presentations.” For Virbac Australia Tasmania Sales Manager Rob Youl, the roadshow is a great opportunity to learn from leaders in their field. “The presentations from Dr Dwyer and Dr Ball will provide attendees with practical information that can be applied directly on their farm. This promises to be a unique experience for beef and dairy producers, as they learn the latest and most effective weaner management programs for improved cattle health.” Interested producers are invited to contact Virbac representative Rob Youl on 0412 742 307, or email rob.youl@virbac.com.au for more information on how to attend. Tasmania roadshow itinerary: Date Location Time 21 May 2019 Agritas Conference Centre, Smithton 12pm Lunch available. 22 May 2019 The Boomerang, Currie King Island 12pm Lunch available. About the speakers Dr Matthew Ball Dr Ball has 18 years experience helping cattle farmers in a range of clinical, advisory and research roles. His employment includes jobs in clinical practice, government and industry, and he’s also undertaken postgraduate qualifications in disease surveillance and education. Based on the northern rivers of NSW, Matthew is passionate about helping cattle farmers develop practical and profitable preventative health programs, helping them to understand how medicines work and the scientific differences between animal health products. Dr Craig Dwyer Former President of Australian Cattle Vets and Veterinarian, Dr Craig Dwyer graduated from Queensland University in 1998. After graduation he worked in dairy practice in Smithton Tasmania before continuing his career in England and Wales. Craig then returned to Smithton Veterinary Service where he became a partner in the practice. This practice is now part of the Apiam Animal Health group and Craig acts as Clinic Lead for the Tasmanian practices. Craig has completed the Sydney University postgraduate course in ruminant nutrition and in 2007 passed his membership exams in ruminant animal nutrition. Craig’s veterinary interests include cattle reproduction, bull fertility, nutrition and production. Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 / 0421 935 843 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Dr Matthew Ball, Livestock Technical Services Manager at Virbac Australia Dr Craig Dwyer, Clinical Lead for Apiam Animal Health Group Rethinking sheepishness 2019-05-13T20:53:11Z rethinking-sheepishness Dear Editor, Have you ever been accused of acting like a sheep? It's a compliment! A new study by a neuroscientist shows that sheep are complex, individualistic, and social animals. But farmers still treat sheep as mere commodities, which makes it easier to confine, torment and slaughter them. Sheep have excellent vision and hearing, as well as sense of smell. They have extremely sophisticated face recognition skills and can interpret emotions on the faces of other sheep. They can also recognise human faces, even when those faces are shown to them in different orientations. Tests show that sheep can feel optimistic or pessimistic – just like humans, sheep who have had bad experiences in the past tend to not do as well on cognitive tasks as those who had good experiences. Sheep also have individual personalities – distinctive combinations of traits that are consistent over time and that map readily onto some of the personality dimensions we recognize in humans, such as boldness or shyness. Knowing this, it’s abhorrent that farmers routinely punch holes in lambs' ears, chop off their tails, and castrate males without the use of anaesthetics. In Australia, many lambs are also forced to endure a gruesome procedure called "mulesing", in which huge chunks of skin and flesh are cut from the animals' backsides, sometimes without any painkillers. PETA exposés have consistently shown shearing sheds to be among the worst places in the world for cruelty to animals. And when their monetary value diminishes, sheep are often shipped across the equator to the other side of the world in appalling conditions; those who survive the trips will meet a gruesome death in countries where animal welfare standards are even lower than Australia's. Sheep are intelligent, complex, and feeling individuals. Treating them as unfeeling commodities may be profitable, but it is totally immoral. Desmond Bellamy Special Projects Coordinator PETA Australia PO Box 2352 Byron Bay NSW 2481 08 8556-5828 DesmondB@PETA.org.au Virbac Australia to present a series of cattle health sessions at this year’s Gympie Show 2019-05-13T00:30:48Z virbac-australia-to-present-a-series-of-cattle-health-sessions-at-this-years-gympie-show The ever-popular Gympie Show is back – and this year, animal health company Virbac Australia will be part of the line-up as they present a series of cattle health sessions designed to support producers with tips and advice on improving animal productivity and profitability. With cattle ticks in the Gympie region being especially problematic for young weaner cattle, Virbac Australia is running four presentations to help farmers improve the immunity and health of young weaner cattle, as well as identify the best broad spectrum long-acting drench and trace mineral supplements to support them at this critical time in their development. Delivered by Victor Moffroid, Area Sales Manager for the Gympie region, he’ll also be demonstrating the correct application method for injectable long-acting drenches and injectable trace mineral supplements. Events run at the Showground Cattle Yards on Thursday May 16th at 12.00pm and 4.00pm, and Friday 17th May at 10:30am and 2:30pm. They’re free to attend, and interested media and event visitors are invited to turn up and register on the day. Everyone that registers will go into the draw to win a 200ml pack of Cydectin Long Acting Injection for Cattle, with the winner drawn on Friday 17th May. This year’s Gympie Show promises to offer an amazing experience for all, and Virbac Australia is looking forward to being part of what has over the years become a major highlight of the regions agricultural calendar. To find out more about Virbac Australia, please visit https://au.virbac.com/ Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 / 0421 935 843 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Victor Moffroid, Virbac Australia Area Sales Manager Beef producer administering Cydectin LA Veterinarian warns of post-flooding botulism risk for northern QLD 2019-05-09T04:27:14Z veterinarian-warns-of-post-flooding-botulism-risk-for-northern-qld In the wake of Queensland’s recent flooding, a leading vet has flagged the heightened risk of botulism for northern cattle producers. Botulism thrives in decaying animal and plant matter. With producers having faced the loss of many cattle, there’s likely to be an increased presence of the lethal toxin, both now and for many years to come, says Dr Matt Ball, Veterinarian and Technical Services Manager at Virbac Australia. The number of animal carcasses made conditions ideal for the proliferation of the disease. Latest estimates were half a million cattle dead, and with many cattle in recovery mode, survivors will be driven to chew bones to obtain vital nutrients. The number one method to combat this problem is an effective vaccination program. Dr Ball has spent three years researching the immune response of northern Australian cattle to botulism. His research confirmed the challenges of successfully vaccinating cattle in northern Australia due to nutritional and other factors, with the choice of vaccine found to have a major affect on protection levels. Recent field research conducted by Virbac and the Department of Primary Industry & Resources has shown that even after vaccination, only 70-80% of cattle may be protected. A range of issues can affect success – from missed mustering in often challenging environments to difficulty in handling animal health products, as well as compromised immunity on vaccination day. As Dr Ball explains, now that the risk is so much higher, a booster will pick up the 20% of animals that may still be vulnerable. It’s also important to remember that botulism is a ‘challenge-based’ disease – so in much the same way as shatterproof glass can still be broken by a big enough rock, a previously vaccinated animal can still die if given a high enough dose of the toxin. “Even if you’ve vaccinated prior to the floods, you’ll likely want to talk to an animal health advisor about the possibility of a booster, as this will give the highest possible level of antibodies to meet the increased levels of toxins currently present,” says Dr Ball. There are differences in the available botulism vaccines in Australia. SingVac, available as a One Year or Three Year product and containing an innovative ‘water in oil in water’ formulation, was found in local research to be capable of producing a higher level of antibodies when compared to other vaccines on the market. It is an ideal vaccine to protect cattle through this high-risk period. In the face of the widespread risk caused by the huge number of livestock mortalities in the recent floods, vaccination is the best form of defense to help minimise the threat from this deadly disease. A botulism management plan is vital for successful post-flood farm recovery. Farmers are invited to find out more about SingVac at au.virbac.com Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Dr Matt Ball, Veterinarian and Technical Services Manager at Virbac Australia Northern QLD Brahman Cattle Virbac Multimin Performance Ready Challenge winner announced! 2019-05-06T02:57:02Z virbac-multimin-performance-ready-challenge-winner-announced After 12 intensive months of in-depth trace mineral trials conducted by seven farmers around Australia and their mentors, the results of the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge winner’s vote are finally in. With close to 5,000 public votes cast for the three finalists, and 50% of the votes going to the overall winner, challenge organiser Virbac Australia are thrilled to announce the 2019 Multimin Challenger Queen as Victorian farmer Renee Murfett from Framlingham. Virbac Australia’s Livestock Nutrition Product Manager Jerry Liu described the level of public support for the challenge as “truly amazing. This competition has really captured the hearts and minds of our farming communities, and we’re incredibly proud of Renee and her mentor Dr Susan Swaney for all the hard work and dedication they’ve put into this trial over the last year.” Renee’s goal was clear from word go. “I wanted to use Multimin to increase the immunity, health and productivity of our calves,” she explains. With five heifers previously lost due to broken legs, all indications were that her stock was suffering from suboptimal levels of trace minerals. “The Multimin Challenge was a great opportunity to see the impact of trace mineral supplementation on our livestock health and performance,” says Renee. With the trial itself focusing on 105 treated animals and 105 untreated animals, calves were weighed at birth and even numbered tags were given a shot of Multimin injection, with odd numbered tags left untreated as a control mob. “Our first observation was that the treated calves had a very shiny coat compared to the untreated animals,” Renee explains. “With skin being the first line of defense, animals with healthy coats have higher immunity to disease, and they can better fight off infections – and that leads to improved future productivity.” The next obvious difference was when calves were transitioned onto hard feed. “Many untreated animals developed scouring and went off their feed for 2-3 days,” Renee reports. “However, none of the Multimin-treated animals developed scours, and continued to feed well. This really impressed me, because scouring calves are very hard work and very time-consuming – so to be able to avoid that problem is a major bonus.” “This trial has proved the critical roles trace elements play in immunity and animal health, and it’s really showed how Multimin can enhance immunity. There’s no doubt that optimisation of trace minerals at high demand times can improve animal health and productivity,” concludes Renee. “It’s been a fascinating12 month trial, and I’m over the moon to hear that I’ve won the competition.” As part of her prize, Virbac Australia will be sending Renee on an overseas study tour tailored to her farming system, valued at more than $20,000. She’ll be jetting off on an overseas study tour to learn more about best-practice dairy farming. “It’s going to be life-changing,” says Renee. “To have this opportunity to study overseas dairy farming practices and gain new inspiration to help improve our business is incredible. I feel really excited for what’s to come.” For Jerry, the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge has been a unique way for the industry to encourage livestock producers to get involved and learn more about this important aspect of animal health and nutrition. “The program has received an incredible amount of support from the public, and also from livestock experts all over Australia. The results of this challenge will really help us to continue pioneering new research that improves product efficacy and benefits our local producers.” Find out more about Multimin, Virbac Australia’s Performance Ready Challenge and Challenger Queen Renee Murfett at www.multiminchallenge.com Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo caption: Multimin Performance Ready Challenge Winner Renee Murfett Renee Murfett with mentor Dr Susan Swaney Unhappy Mothers' Days 2019-05-02T19:03:56Z unhappy-mothers-days Dear Editor, On Mother’s Day, thousands of mothers will be separated from their babies. In the dairy industry, newborn calves are taken away from their mothers shortly after birth so that the milk meant for them can be bought and consumed by humans. Being separated causes grief and anguish to both mother and calf. Distraught mother cows often cry out for their lost babies for days. Male calves are either sent for slaughter or killed on the farm by being shot or smashed through the skull with a hammer. And it's not just mother cows. PETA exposés of the wool industry in Australia – the world’s largest exporter of wool – show mother sheep watching and frantically calling out as workers cut chunks of flesh off their lambs' hindquarters with shears, in a crude procedure known as "mulesing", which is carried out in an attempt to address issues caused by breeding them to produce excessive amounts of wool. In puppy mills, female dogs are treated like puppy-producing machines. Puppies are abruptly taken away from their mothers, and both mother and baby can suffer malnutrition, exposure, and a lack of adequate veterinary care. Mothers are kept in cramped cages and hutches and bred over and over again until they can no longer produce puppies. Such abuse is rampant across industries that exploit animals and perpetuate speciesism – the view that the lives and experiences of other animals don't matter simply because they’re not human. Please, spare a thought for these animals as you're celebrating Mother’s Day. Our consumer choices have the power to make it happy or full of misery for other mothers. Mimi Bekhechi Campaigns Consultant, PETA Australia PO Box 20308 World Square Sydney, NSW, 2002 (+618) 8556-5828 mimib@peta.org.au New Media App Launches To Kill Off The Press Release 2019-04-30T04:15:39Z new-media-app-launches-to-kill-off-the-press-release A new technology platform has launches tomorrow made just for you. This tech platform called Story Match® will change the way that you receive your story pitches. No more emails, no more press releases and no more hassling PRs (I promise not to be one of those…) First, watch this! In 1.5 minutes it will explain it all to you… Story Match® is a two sided market place App and Desktop platform that allows brands to pitch story ideas to journalists, at the same time allowing journalists to select only what topics of stories they want to receive. Journalists, like you, set up their profile using 6 simple steps. You can select from up to 50 industry tags (food, finance, lifestyle, tech, etc etc) and can localise by State and Territories. If there’s a match on industry tags then you see the pitch. Using swiping technology you can scroll through stories, swipe left if you don’t like the story or right if you do. If you swipe right, it will open an immediate and private chat between you and the person who posted the pitch. The best bit…. The pitches have limitations – so brands can only upload selected images, a headline and up to 500 characters to bring their pitch to life. They then select which industry tag their story is relevant to, and localise it. So now you don’t need to read any more press releases or receive any more pitches that you’re not interested in. Story Match® was developed to improve efficiencies in the media industry, and allow all brands, no matter how big or small the opportunity to get their brand noticed. The tech platform has been developed by Founder and Director of Polkadot Communications Dionne Taylor – who has worked both as a journalist and a PR for the last 15 years. Dionne is available for an interview to chat about this new and exciting platform, built just for YOU! If interested in speaking with Dionne, please get in touch. Under two weeks left to vote for the Virbac Multimin Performance Ready Challenge winner 2019-04-22T22:43:34Z under-two-weeks-left-to-vote-for-the-virbac-multimin-performance-ready-challenge-winner There are just a couple of weeks to go to cast your vote before one Australian livestock producer is crowned the Multimin Performance Ready Challenger King or Queen for 2019. Launched by animal health company Virbac Australia, the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge has been running for the past 12 months. The program’s top three challengers, Don McConnel (QLD), Renee Murfett (VIC) and Ryan Willing (WA) are all in the running to win the study trip of a lifetime tailored to their farming system, valued at more than $20,000 ­– and with thousands of votes already cast by the public, the voting is currently neck and neck. Challenger Don says Multimin has already helped his heifers’ immunity and fertility during what is a very hard stage of their lives, giving them the lift in production they were looking for. “We’ve learnt some really invaluable information about our herd’s health and the benefits of Multimin if given at high demand moments pre-joining, and in conjunction with vaccines to help boost the animals’ immune system,” he says. For Renee, the challenge has been a great opportunity to see the impact of the trace mineral injections on livestock health and performance. “The trial confirmed the critical roles that trace minerals play in immunity and animal health and shows us that immunity can be enhanced by use of Multimin. There’s no doubt that optimisation of trace minerals at high demand time points can provide improved animal health and productivity,” she says. Ryan reports that before starting using Multimin “my yearlings used to look brown and shaggy by the end of winter – but they were keeping their shiny black coats, which is the first sign of good health. Treatment with Multimin four weeks from joining lifted the average conception rate from 85% to 92% over a 9-week joining period. I also saw weight gains in my steers by using a combination of Multimin and Cydectin Long Acting Injection, with results showing a 1 kg/day average from weaning to spring sale,” says Ryan. For all three challengers, the opportunity to learn from the overseas study tour prize awarded to the overall winner will be instrumental in helping them to improve productivity. "As young farmers, an overseas study tour would be incredibly beneficial for learning and implementing new practices, ensuring our farm’s growth and sustainability into the future," says Ryan. Renee agrees, saying that it would be “life-changing to see overseas dairy farming practices, and the opportunity would bring fresh inspiration and ideas to help improve our business.” Meanwhile, for Don the prize would be “an ideal opportunity to learn about new technologies and techniques in practice, and see how we could bring that home to help us lift production and efficiency.” Data collected from the challenge will also assist Virbac with future research projects aiming to improve product efficacy. As Virbac Australia’s Livestock Nutrition Marketing Manager Jerry Liu explains, “nutritional science is dynamic and always evolving – and as the market leader, it’s important for us to capture data through trials with real beef, dairy and sheep producers, so we can continue to pioneer new research that benefits our local producers.” There’s still time to vote for your favourite challenger and send them on an overseas study tour. Voting closes at midnight on May 5, so cast your vote for the Multimin King or Queen of 2019 now at www.multiminchallenge.com Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: VIC Multimin Performance Ready Challenger Renee Murfett WA Multimin Performance Ready Challenger Ryan Willing with Mentor Dr Enoch Bergman QLD Multimin Performance Ready Challenger Don McConnel Selective honesty from Farmers' Federation 2019-04-01T03:55:52Z selective-honesty-from-farmers-federation Dear Editor, In a display of hypocrisy breathtaking even for animal exploitation industries, the Farmers' Federation has expressed outrage at the attempts by the EU to get local farmers to respect "geographical indications" which would stop Australian dairy farmers using names like fetta or parmesan. They complain about "protectionism", while trying to protect their failing industries with legal prestidigitation. They have been screaming about producers of soy and other products using the term "milk" or "cheese" as in "soy milk" or "almond milk". I'm sure they’d try to stop peanut farmers making peanut "butter" too if they could. If we want complete honesty in labelling, let's not use these terms at all. In future, supermarket shelves won't say "milk", but "the mammary secretion of animals produced for the nourishment of their young but taken for profit". "Meat" will be labelled "the muscles, sinews, fat and bones of young animals slaughtered in terror and distress". The only label you can really trust to mean what it says is "vegan". Desmond Bellamy Special Projects Coordinator PETA Australia PO Box 2352 Byron Bay NSW 2481 0411 577 416 desmondb@peta.org.au It’s time to vote for the Virbac Multimin Performance Ready Challenge winner 2019-03-31T21:57:30Z its-time-to-vote-for-the-virbac-multimin-performance-ready-challenge-winner-2 Animal health company Virbac Australia has announced its top three finalists in the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge – and with just 30 days to go before one lucky livestock producer is crowned the Multimin Challenger King or Queen, now’s the time to cast your vote. Over the past 12 months, seven livestock producers have been competing in the 12-month program, designed to test the benefits of Multimin, an injection used to top up trace minerals in sheep and cattle prior to high demand periods. Led by Virbac Australia, the program has seen improvements in everything from pregnancy-test rates to conception rates and immune function, all delivering a vital boost to producer productivity. Virbac’s top three challengers, Don McConnel (QLD), Renee Murfett (VIC) and Ryan Willing (WA) are all in the running to win an overseas study tour tailored to their farming system, and free Multimin for a year, a total prize value of more than $20,000. Don operates “Mt Brisbane”, a 4,500 hectare breeding and fattening operation in the Brisbane Valley, where he runs purebred Droughtmaster cattle and a Droughtmaster stud operation. Facing trace mineral issues particularly with copper and selenium, Don has sought to use Multimin to increase fertility, conception and productivity. Results showed that animals treated with Multimin at the same time as their 7 in 1 vaccination had higher leptospirosis antibody titres and also looked in noticeably better condition. Renee runs two dairy farms in Framlingham, Victoria with her husband Alister, comprising a 145 hectare home farm, “Springlea”, which has 220 Frisian x Red Dairy milking cows, and a second 183 hectare farm, “Merton Park”, with 250 Frisian x Red Dairy cows. Renee’s goal has been to increase the immunity, health and productivity of their livestock, and she describes how she saw significant differences as early as the first 12 weeks. “The treated calves didn’t seem to suffer from the usual gastric signs that the untreated herd had at the time of weaning. Multimin helped with the adjustment to weaner rations, and they went straight on to the new diet without any issues.” Ryan Willing and his wife Elisha run “Carnigup”, a 1,050-hectare property that’s home to a 300 breeder self-replacing herd east of Esperance, WA. Facing issues with copper and selenium that were impacting the fertility, weight gain and overall health of their herd, their goal has been to increase fertility, conception rates and productivity. When pregnancy-tested last October, Ryan saw above 90% conception in both groups, with the Multimin-treated animals slightly ahead. “Multimin has proven its worth in this instance and reinforced the importance of investing for the future,” says Ryan. WA challenge mentor Dr Enoch Bergman explained that “it’s been great to be involved in the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge and share our knowledge of the role trace minerals can play, to see how it performs with their livestock. We’ve seen some really great results.” Voting lines for each of the finalists have been open since 8am on 1st April, and the public can vote for their favourite challenger until midnight on 5th May 2019. Virbac Australia’s Livestock Nutrition Product Manager Jerry Liu gave his reaction to the news, saying that “we’re excited to let the public decide on who should win, in what is an entirely unconventional, interactive way. We’d love to know who your favourite Multimin challenger has been, so please make your vote count.” So who will become the Multimin Challenger King or Queen on 6 May 2019? That’s for you to decide. Check out the top three challengers and their results at www.multiminchallenge.com and cast your vote to award one worthy winner the Multimin Ultimate Challenger title and the trip of a lifetime. Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Top 3 Multimin Performance Ready Challenger finalists (Don, Renee, Ryan) WA Multimin Challenger Elisha & Ryan Willing with mentor Dr Enoch Bergman It’s time to vote for the Virbac Multimin Performance Ready Challenge winner 2019-03-31T21:53:43Z its-time-to-vote-for-the-virbac-multimin-performance-ready-challenge-winner-1 Animal health company Virbac Australia has announced its top three finalists in the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge – and with just 30 days to go before one lucky livestock producer is crowned the Multimin Challenger King or Queen, now’s the time to cast your vote. Over the past 12 months, seven livestock producers have been competing in the 12-month program, designed to test the benefits of Multimin, an injection used to top up trace minerals in sheep and cattle prior to high demand periods. Led by Virbac Australia, the program has seen improvements in everything from pregnancy-test rates to conception rates and immune function, all delivering a vital boost to producer productivity. Virbac’s top three challengers, Don McConnel (QLD), Renee Murfett (VIC) and Ryan Willing (WA) are all in the running to win an overseas study tour tailored to their farming system, and free Multimin for a year, a total prize value of more than $20,000. Don operates “Mt Brisbane”, a 4,500 hectare breeding and fattening operation in the Brisbane Valley, where he runs purebred Droughtmaster cattle and a Droughtmaster stud operation. Facing trace mineral issues particularly with copper and selenium, Don has sought to use Multimin to increase fertility, conception and productivity. Results showed that animals treated with Multimin at the same time as their 7 in 1 vaccination had higher leptospirosis antibody titres and also looked in noticeably better condition. Renee runs two dairy farms in Framlingham, Victoria with her husband Alister, comprising a 145 hectare home farm, “Springlea”, which has 220 Frisian x Red Dairy milking cows, and a second 183 hectare farm, “Merton Park”, with 250 Frisian x Red Dairy cows. Renee’s goal has been to increase the immunity, health and productivity of their livestock, and she describes how she saw significant differences as early as the first 12 weeks. “The treated calves didn’t seem to suffer from the usual gastric signs that the untreated herd had at the time of weaning. Multimin helped with the adjustment to weaner rations, and they went straight on to the new diet without any issues.” Ryan Willing and his wife Elisha run “Carnigup”, a 1,050-hectare property that’s home to a 300 breeder self-replacing herd east of Esperance, WA. Facing issues with copper and selenium that were impacting the fertility, weight gain and overall health of their herd, their goal has been to increase fertility, conception rates and productivity. When pregnancy-tested last October, Ryan saw above 90% conception in both groups, with the Multimin-treated animals slightly ahead. “Multimin has proven its worth in this instance and reinforced the importance of investing for the future,” says Ryan. WA challenge mentor Dr Enoch Bergman explained that “it’s been great to be involved in the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge and share our knowledge of the role trace minerals can play, to see how it performs with their livestock. We’ve seen some really great results.” Voting lines for each of the finalists have been open since 8am on 1st April, and the public can vote for their favourite challenger until midnight on 5th May 2019. Virbac Australia’s Livestock Nutrition Product Manager Jerry Liu gave his reaction to the news, saying that “we’re excited to let the public decide on who should win, in what is an entirely unconventional, interactive way. We’d love to know who your favourite Multimin challenger has been, so please make your vote count.” So who will become the Multimin Challenger King or Queen on 6 May 2019? That’s for you to decide. Check out the top three challengers and their results at www.multiminchallenge.com and cast your vote to award one worthy winner the Multimin Ultimate Challenger title and the trip of a lifetime. Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Top 3 Multimin Performance Ready Challenger finalists (Don, Renee, Ryan) WA Multimin Challenger Elisha & Ryan Willing with mentor Dr Enoch Bergman Salmonella deaths 2019-03-26T21:54:55Z salmonella-deaths Dear Editor, Hundreds of thousands of hens are expected to be killed following the salmonella food poisoning event that saw a nationwide recall of eggs last week. What most people don’t realise is that many of these smart, sociable birds will have led horrendous lives in egg production factories, and had they not been killed now, they would have been gassed or transported long distances to be turned into dog and cat food after just 72 weeks of life. Hens have a natural lifespan of up to 12 years, but in the egg industry they are slaughtered while still really just adolescents after they’re no longer deemed profitable. The process of killing hens often involves injuries such as bone fractures due to time pressures and rough handling and the risks and difficulties of removing birds through narrow cage doors. Due to lack of exercise, birds in battery cages also have weaker bones and their legs or wings may snap. Yes, let’s feel sorry for the hundreds of thousands of hens who will be slaughtered this week because their eggs cause food poisoning while remembering the16 million hens in Australia who will be just as mercilessly killed when their suffering no longer produces profitable eggs. Ending such misery is easy, as well as much safer for your family – don’t eat eggs. Mimi Bekhechi Campaigns Consultant, PETA Australia PO Box 20308 World Square Sydney, NSW, 2002 (08) 8556-5828 mimib@peta.org.au Forgettable Alzheimer's Research 2019-03-24T23:17:36Z forgettable-alzheimers-research Dear Editor, At a recent scientific conference, not one but three pharmaceutical companies announced the stunning failures of experimental Alzheimer’s drugs that had tested successfully in mice, who have to be genetically engineered to develop a pseudo-Alzheimer’s condition. The compounds—known as BACE inhibitors—actually appeared to hurt patients, by worsening their cognitive abilities and causing brain shrinkage. The journal Nature described this ever-growing list of treatment disappointments: "Drug companies have spent billions of dollars searching for therapies to reverse or significantly slow Alzheimer’s disease, to no avail." As one molecular biologist put it, "The biggest mistake you can make is to think you can ever have a mouse with Alzheimer’s disease." For the sake of humans and other animals, experimenters must adopt superior, non-animal research methods that are actually relevant to human physiology. For example, a just-published landmark study using cells from human brains has provided new insight into how Alzheimer’s develops, and may lead to effective treatments. When charities ask you for your contribution, ask if they test on animals. If they do, find a better cause. Desmond Bellamy Special Projects Coordinator PETA Australia PO Box 2352 Byron Bay NSW 2481 0411 577 416 desmondb@peta.org.au