GFM Network News


The USDA building in Washington, D.C. (Art Wager/iStock/Getty Images)

U.S. ag secretary backs proposed meatpacking investigator

Reuters — U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Tuesday threw his support behind a proposal to establish a special investigator to address concerns about anti-competitive practices in the meat and poultry industries. Republican U.S. Senators Mike Rounds of South Dakota and Charles Grassley of Iowa and Democratic Senator Jon Tester of Montana have proposed legislation […] Read more

Brazilian meatpacker JBS SA’s logo on a tower in Jundiai, northwest of Sao Paulo in southeastern Brazil, on June 1, 2017. (File photo: Reuters/Paulo Whitaker)

JBS says it paid US$11 million in bitcoin for ransom

Cyberattack disrupted plants in North America, Australia

Reuters — Meatpacker JBS USA paid a ransom equivalent to US$11 million (C$13.3 million) following a cyberattack that disrupted its North American and Australian operations, the company’s CEO said in a statement Wednesday. The subsidiary of Brazilian firm JBS halted cattle slaughtering at all of its U.S. plants and its Alberta beef plant for a […] Read more


File photo of a rooster being swabbed in testing for avian influenza. (Merrimon/iStock/Getty Images)

China reports first human case of H10N3 bird flu

Strain 'not a very common virus'

Beijing | Reuters — A 41-year-old man in China’s eastern province of Jiangsu has been confirmed as the first human case of infection with a rare strain of bird flu known as H10N3, Beijing’s National Health Commission (NHC) said on Tuesday. Many different strains of bird flu are present in China and some sporadically infect […] Read more

(Sansubba/iStock/Getty Images)

Feather sector’s on-farm upgrade program underway

Applications now being accepted for funding

The federal free trade compensation program to help Canada’s poultry and egg producers pay for on-farm upgrades, renovations and improvements is now taking applications. The $646.8 million, 10-year Poultry and Egg On-Farm Investment Program (PEFIP) is now formally underway, Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau announced Monday. Each eligible Canadian producer is entitled to an amount proportional […] Read more



(Freder/iStock/Getty Images)

Don’t count chickens before they hatch: Tyson bet on wrong rooster

Meat giant books unexpected decline in hatching

Chicago | Reuters — Tyson Foods is laying off a certain type of rooster from its U.S. chicken business after a surprising discovery that eggs fertilized by the male bird hatch less often, resulting in fewer chickens. The world’s largest meat producer by sales will install a replacement across its breeding program by this fall […] Read more


UCVM takes on poultry diagnostics

Reading Time: < 1 minute The University of Calgary faculty of veterinary medicine (UCVM) and Alberta’s four poultry producer boards are partnering on a poultry diagnostic system. Formerly provided by Poultry Health Services, the program can test for diseases such as avian flu, E. coli, and other pathogens and microbes. Poultry Health Services of Airdrie, which serves the commercial poultry […] Read more



(Stephen Ausmus photo courtesy ARS/USDA)

Risk of human spread of H5N8 bird flu deemed low

Seven people infected but asymptomatic, WHO says

Geneva | Reuters — The risk of human-to-human spread of the H5N8 strain of bird flu appears low after it was identified for the first time worldwide in farm workers in Russia, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday. A separate influenza strain, H1N1, that emerged from pigs and spread rapidly worldwide among humans […] Read more