African Swine Fever (ASF) webinar – lessons learned from Vietnam and China

April 24th, 2020: ASF is a the disease which can infect pigs when they eat contaminated food, faeces, secretion, therefore the best way of protection is to ‘not’ let pigs face any risks of eating contaminated food or items. Biosecurity is the most important issue that we need to reinforce and seriously practice in our farms to keep the ASF away from our industry.

In the midst of the COVID-19 spread of which the impact can be seen all over the world, Informa Markets team wants to bring the learning opportunity closer to you regardless of the travel restrictions. Informa Markets has created the Livestock series of webinars which are an ideal platform for industry players to network and learn.

Livestock series webinar is a live, virtual event that is executed online. It is an educational or instructive session that includes audio and visual communication between a speaker and attendees. Webinar software enables the sharing files and interactive participation through chat boxes and Q&A features.

Why attend the Livestock Series webinars?
–  Opportunity to learn
– The on-demand availability of webinars
– Access from anywhere
– Webinars are low-cost (or free!)
– Interactive data and content


Register for the webinar, HERE.

David Hines joins Borregaard as technical sales manager for Southwestern USA

April 24th, 2020: Borregaard has recently announced a new addition to their Americas Feed Additives team. Mr David Hines joined Borregaard on April 20th, 2020 as Technical Sales Manager, responsible for the Southwestern USA.

David Hines
Image credit: Borregaard

Mr Hines brings thirty years of feed sales, nutrition, management and manufacturing knowledge. His past three years have been with ADM Animal Nutrition (GM) and prior, an extensive twenty-five years with Cargill Animal Nutrition (Sales/BDM/GM). Species background includes the terrestrial species with a specialisation in all aquatic species, including alligators/crocodiles.

Mr Hines will be responsible for growing Borregaard’s feed additives business in the southwestern geography of the US  Mr Hines is based out of his home office near Houston, TX and will report to Dave Taylor, Area Business Manager Feed Additives, Americas.

Visit the Borregaard website, HERE.

Cargill supports non-profits and restaurant to help tackle community hunger

April 16th, 2020: As covid-19 continues to spread, there is a growing need to feed those who are food insecure. To help meet the growing demand, Cargill Foundation supports the MN Central Kitchen in its mission to tackle hunger and layoffs brought on by covid-19.

Recently Cargill’s headquarters cafeteria opens its door to the MN Central Kitchen. This additional kitchen space will provide employment opportunities and 4,000 meals each week for Minnesotans. The Cargill Foundation is also contributing $1 million to add a distribution site in North Minneapolis with Appetite for Change and to support the production of 120,000 meals across all of MN Central Kitchen’s sites.

Image credit: Allispossible on Flickr
(CC BY 2.0)

‘At Cargill, we believe our state’s non-profits and hospitality professionals can continue to respond to the growing need for food assistance in our community and are proud to join them in this relief for food insecure children and families in Minnesota,’ said Katie Clark Sieben, Cargill Foundation Director. ‘It is humbling to see our NGO, restaurant and business communities rally together and mobilise quickly to provide nutritious food and employment opportunities.’

The restaurants provide the kitchen space, staff, supplies and food; Second Harvest Heartland coordinates logistics; Loaves & Fishes and Appetite for Change distribute the to-go meals to Minnesotans free of charge at its more than 30 locations across the state; and companies like Cargill fund the operation and provide additional kitchen space.

‘We can’t fight this virus hungry and yet hunger is growing in our community every day. Effectively battling covid-19 is going to take all of us coming together, putting our best innovations forward, to make sure everyone is safe and fed,’ said Allison O’Toole, CEO of Second Harvest Heartland. ‘The Cargill Foundation’s support of Minnesota Central Kitchen is a perfect example of the kind of powerful partnerships we need right now. We’re grateful for Cargill’s long-standing backing and we’re not surprised that they’ve stepped forward, once again, when we need the community to come together like never before.’

‘For those of us who choose to cook for and serve people as a profession, the thought of not being able to do so is heartbreaking,’ said Jonathan Gans, The Bachelor Farmer’s executive chef. ‘We hope that, through the MN Central Kitchen, even though many of our businesses will be affected by this pandemic, we will still be able to feed and take care of those who need it most during these difficult times. A cook needs to cook, and that’s what I intend to do.’

This is just one example of how Cargill is working with non-profit and NGO partners around the globe to help address food security, health and safety needs and agriculture and food industry challenges due to the spread of covid-19.

In addition to monetary donation, Cargill are collaborating with non-profits around the globe to donate food, ingredients and other high-need products for those who are vulnerable during this pandemic. Cargill has donated nearly 1 million pounds of food to food shelves and hunger relief efforts in local communities where our employees live and work. Cargill’s global and regional covid-19 response is guided by our purpose to nourish the world in a safe, responsible and sustainable way.

Visit the Cargill website, HERE.

FAMSUN supports industry partners and customers with tools to fight covid-19

April 16th, 2020: Today the team at International Milling Directory were most grateful to receive a supply of 200 PPE surgical face masks from FAMSUN, a Chinese based world-leading agricultural machinery manufacturer and engineering service provider.

Throughout the covid-19 outbreak FAMSUN have continued to service the industry’s needs, and now they are going above and beyond in supplying their colleagues around the world with tools to help in their own fight against the virus.

FAMSUN have been a leading enterprise in global agriculture and husbandry for over 50 years, and they continue to dedicate themselves to providing efficient and sustained solutions to the agriculture and husbandry sectors for safer, healthier and more environmental-friendly food across the world.

Visit the FAMSUN website, HERE.

Alltech releases free on-demand series about the impact of COVID-19 on agriculture

April 14, 2020: As part of Alltech’s effort to provide valuable resources to colleagues, customers and the global agricultural community confronting COVID-19, the company has created a special discussion series, Forging the Future of the Farm & Food Chain. Available online beginning today, this free, on-demand series features experts from around the world as they share their insights into how the global pandemic is affecting the agriculture industry’s present and future.

‘Crises illuminate character, and COVID has highlighted the heroic work undertaken by the global agriculture community to ensure a secure food supply in the midst of such uncertainty,’ said Dr Mark Lyons, president and CEO of Alltech. ‘We created this series as an expression of our support for this community. In addition to offering valuable information and insights in the context of this COVID challenge, we hope to deliver inspiration — we have an opportunity in this moment to, together, shape the future of the farm and food chain.’

Future of Farm and Food Chain

The series consists presentations from Lyons and three panel discussions with experts including David McWilliams, economist and professor at Trinity College Dublin; Jessica Adelman, CEO of ESG Results and former executive at Kroger; Jack Bobo, futurist and CEO of Futurity; and Ryan Quarles, Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture.

Forging the Future of the Farm & Food Chain, a special COVID-19 discussion series, includes:

• Cultivating Optimism & Opportunity: Leadership in Times of Crisis
In times of crisis, leadership becomes even more consequential. How can leaders bring certainty in a time of uncertainty? How can they help their teams think proactively in order to discover opportunity and drive innovation?

Dr  Mark Lyons, president and CEO of Alltech, explores how a leader can shape a culture of resilience that empowers a team, even during times of turmoil.

• From the Frontlines of Food Production
The COVID-19 crisis has brought renewed attention to not only the critical importance of food production, but also to the people on the frontlines who work tirelessly to ensure we have food on the table. This panel discussion takes a first-hand look at the experiences of those working within the food/feed sector in the midst of COVID-19.

The panellists are global Alltech team members Matt Kwok, China operations manager; Sayed Aman, India managing director; Andrea Capitani, Italy business manager; and Alex Galipienso, Spain general manager. The panel is moderated by Michelle Michael, Alltech media producer.

• The Post-COVID Consumer: A Remaking of the Market?
Consumer trends are constantly evolving, but post-COVID, will the market see another seismic shift? This panel discussion features an investigation into the lasting impact COVID-19 could have on consumers and the global economy.

Moderating the panel is Damien McLoughlin, professor of marketing at University College Dublin, with panelists David McWilliams, economist and professor at Trinity College Dublin; Jessica Adelman, CEO at ESG Results and former executive at Kroger; and Jack Bobo, futurist and CEO at Futurity.

• Keep Calm and Carry On: The Essential Business of Agriculture
In this panel discussion, experts investigate how the current crisis is reshaping the agriculture sector. What permanent changes could COVID-19 create in how we source, produce and deliver food to market? Will there be a new appetite for automation and supply chain provenance?

Mary Shelman, former director of Harvard Business School’s Agribusiness Program, moderates panelists John Young Simpson, president of Bluegrass Partners in Singapore; Ryan Quarles, Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture; Mike Osborne, former president and CEO of Nutra Blend; and Kayla Price, technical manager of Alltech Canada.

• Planet of Plenty in a Post-COVID World
In the midst of this COVID crisis, the global agriculture community has carried on its essential work — rising with the sun no matter the circumstance. We have provided the security of certainty at a time of great uncertainty and, in doing so, have reshaped the perception of our industry and perhaps even the way we view ourselves.

Dr Mark Lyons, president and CEO of Alltech, shares his thoughts on how we can create a world of abundance post-COVID. How will we harness this renewed trust? Will the experiences of this time usher in a new approach to the ways in which we produce food, structure our supply chains and connect with consumers?

To access the Forging the Future of the Farm & Food Chain series on-demand, visit the Alltech website, HERE.

As Alltech has been closely monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic, an online COVID-19 resource portal has been created for customers and industry partners.

This COVID-19 special series reflects the insightful, thought-provoking content that will be available as part of the Alltech ONE Virtual Experience beginning on 18 May, 2020. The virtual program will include live-streamed keynote presentations and on-demand video content from some of the world’s leading industry experts as they address the challenges and opportunities facing agriculture today.

Learn more about the ONE Virtual Experience and register, HERE.   

Iran’s wheat production is expected to reach 14 million tonnes this year

April 9, 2020: Based on the calendar year that started on March 20, Iran is expected to produce 14 million tonnes of wheat.

Speaking to the IRNA, Iran’s official news agency, a Ministry of Agriculture official said that the wheat harvest in the country has already started in Bushehr Province, South Iran, as well as within the Sistan and Baluchestan Provinces, Southeast Iran.

Image credit: Lamoix on Flickr
(CC BY 2.0)

The official noted that the harvesting of crops will soon start in the provinces of Fars, South Iran, Khuzestan, Southwest Iran and Kerman, South Iran, and wheat harvest will begin in all regions of the country until April 19, and stated that they are pleased with the heavy rainfall in the country and expect this year to bring forth an especially good harvest.

There are over six million hectares of wheat cultivation in the country, and four million of this is dry field farms.

The Ministry of Agriculture also announced that the wheat harvest will not be stopped due to the coronavirus spreading, since the crop is a primary resource of food for the Iranian people.

‘2020 Stand Up for Grain Safety Week’ raises awareness about grain handling and storage hazards

April 9, 2020: The National Grain and Feed Association (NGFA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) are hosting a major safety outreach effort – the ‘Stand Up for Grain Safety Week’ – from 13-17 April, 2020, to help raise awareness about grain handling and storage hazards and ways to prevent them, provide education and training, and convey safety best practices.

Throughout the Stand Up for Grain Safety Week, companies may participate by providing a focused activity and/or toolbox talk for employees on any hazard-prevention measure. Featured topics that NGFA and its safety partners — the Grain Elevator and Processing Society (GEAPS) and the Grain Handling Safety Council (GHSC) — will highlight throughout the week include: Preventive maintenance; machine/conveyor guarding; grain bin entry; and slips, trips and falls.

This year’s event also will be supplemented with safety-related information to protect employees during the COVID-19 pandemic, including a new NGFA Safety Tip Sheet and other resources that can be found on

 ‘As the food and agricultural industry continues to work to provide essential human and animal food during the pandemic — during which grain, feed and processing facility employees have been deemed part of the nation’s ‘critical essential infrastructure’ — it may be more important than ever to bring awareness and practicability to best safety practices for grain handlers to maintain and protect our robust workforce,’ said NGFA Vice President of Safety and Regulatory Affairs Jess McCluer. ‘We encourage all companies to participate in this effort and show their continued commitment to the health and safety of their employees.’

Participating companies are encouraged to fill out information about their safety activities on, which provides training materials and a certificate of participation. Participants can share safety success stories on social media with the hashtag: StandUp4GrainSafety.

The campaign is hosted under the auspices of the NGFA-OSHA Alliance in collaboration with the GEAPS and GHSC.

The NGFA has several resources, including safety tip sheets, guidance documents and training videos, for companies wishing to become involved in the campaign on the NGFA website, HERE.

World Flour Day serves as a reminder for us to appreciate the white gold of life

April 9, 2020: ‘Flour is one of mankind’s most important staple foods, yet we all take it for granted.’

The National Day Calendar has certified 20th March as World Flour Day.

‘At last we have one day in the year that reminds us to appreciate our daily flour – the white gold of life’, says initiator Carsten Blum of FlourWorld Museum with satisfaction. Farmers, millers, bakers – in fact the entire flour-processing industry from New York to Sydney, from Buenos Aires to Mexico, from Lisbon to Moscow: they all celebrate this day.

Carsten Blum from the MehlWelten Museum, the initiator and man behind the idea, gives the starting signal
for the first World Flour Day.
Image credit: Stern-Wywiol Gruppe

Flour. Power. Life.
Products made from flour are the daily food of billions of people. All over the world, flour is made into delicious foods like bread, biscuits, cake, pasta and many other goods. It is one of man’s most important staple foods, and has been for thousands of years.

Day of appreciation
Why 20th March? The day falls in the middle of the solstice, that varies between 19th and 21st March. In the northern hemisphere, it marks the beginning of spring and the time for sowing; in the southern hemisphere it represents autumn and harvesting. For farmers and the flour processing industries the days around 20th March are a special time of hope and gratitude. World Flour Day has been officially appointed and certified as an ‘international day of action’ by the National Day Calendar.

World Flour Day is celebrated around the globe
Millers, bakers, confectioners and pasta manufacturers use this day to draw attention to the significance and diversity of flour products with their creative activities. These all fall under the ancient motto: ‘Share your bread, and it will taste better. Share your good fortune, and it will multiply!’

The initiator: the FlourWorld Museum
With the new World Flour Day, the FlourWorld Museum draws attention to the civilizing power this white gold has always had. ‘Flour has secured man’s survival for thousands of years’, says Volkmar Wywiol, the founder of the FlourWorld Museum.

Established in Wittenburg, Germany, in 2008, the museum houses the world’s biggest collection of flour sacks. The motifs on the 3,500 or more sacks from 140 countries testify to the pride of the millers. They tell surprising, moving and sometimes incredible stories of what corn, flour and bread mean to people all over the world. Moreover, flour is a historical power factor of the highest order. In a cultural and historical tour, the FlourWorld Museum illuminates the epoch-making effects flour had on mankind between the Neolithic and the Industrial Revolution and will continue to have in future. 

Visit the World Flour Day website, HERE.

Registration is now open for Cereals LIVE 2020 with BASIS & NRoSO points available

Cereals is shifting to a new online platform to support the industry while we are socially distanced due to COVID-19.

April 9, 2020: Cereals LIVE 2020 is a virtual event taking place on the 10th & 11th June 2020. The visitors are offered an exciting new opportunity to interact in a virtual environment free of charge. You won’t want to miss this live virtual exhibition – an innovative alternative to the traditional event.  There will also be two very full days of online seminars and the ability to pick up CPD points throughout.

Registered attendees will receive an event guide prior Cereals LIVE 2020 explaining how to get the most out of the virtual event.

Register now for Cereals LIVE 2020, HERE.

The virtual event will feature the following elements:

Interactive visitor experience
Attendees will be able to access the event through an interactive map on the Cereals website. You will be able to ‘visit’ exhibitors and watch machinery demonstrations, with live talks making for a fully interactive experience.

Multiple themed webinars & demos
The seminar sessions will be run by video-based webinars, delivering content from our new & returning features such as; the Young Farmers’ Sustainability Theatre, Cereals AHDB Theatre, DIT Innovation & Tech Theatre & Grain Exchange.

Cereals will be showcasing a full range of exhibitor led content which includes video from crop plots, sprays and sprayers and working demonstrations, as well as exhibitors’ own video content and new product launches.

To access the event on the day you will need to visit the Cereals website, HERE.

The importance of maintaining the supply of flour

by Alex Waugh, nabim

April 8, 2020 – UK: COVID-19: Flour is a staple food throughout the world, and the UK is no different with about 12 million loaves of bread, two million pizzas and 10 million cakes and biscuits made every day.

This can be achieved thanks to a daily production of about 14,000 tonnes of flour. Roughly one third of all the food and drink product lines in a typical UK supermarket contain flour, so it really is central to the food production system.

Since the early outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, nabim has highlighted the milling industry’s desire to play its part in meeting people’s food requirements. To be sure of doing this, we need to ensure that logistical challenges are addressed. Our supply chain operates on something close to a just-in-time basis with around three-to-five days of grain supply at mills; one-to-three days’ worth of flour at mills; one-to-two days’ flour requirement at bakeries and daily deliveries of bread to supermarkets and other retail outlets.

We need a steady supply of wheat to mills and flour to bakeries in order to make this work, so the continuing availability of key staff including millers, engineers and drivers, flexibility on the hours they can work and delivery times, and the continued availability of fuel and electricity are the most immediate priorities.

nabim has been making the case to the government, and we are very hopeful that the critical nature of the industry will be recognised and addressed in various ways so that it can continue to operate at or close to capacity, despite staff absence related to illness or quarantine. Meanwhile, the industry has taken steps to protect its own staff by adapting working practice to minimise personal contact, extend the use of sanitisers and personal protection equipment

Ultimately, it is critical that all nations acknowledge the necessity of allowing food production to continue and the importance of trade in both grain and ancillary materials such as packaging in the manufacture of food. Flour is at the heart of the food chain, accounting for 20 percent of the energy and protein in our diets and nearly one third of dietary iron and calcium and an even bigger share of dietary fibre, as well as providing a range of other minerals and vitamins. It is the job of the milling industry to ensure that people get the food they need, and the role of government to facilitate this in difficult circumstances. By working together, we can ensure both that the challenge of coronavirus is addressed, and people are fed.