Feed Supply Chain Risk Management

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    African Swine Fever-Vitamin Supply Chain Workshop Notes
    (2019-04-26) Shurson, Gerald C; Urriola, Pedro E; van de Ligt, Jennifer LG; Sullivan, Polly L; Sundberg, Paul
    An African swine fever-vitamin meal supply chain workshop involving key industry stakeholders was conducted on April 26, 2019 on the University of Minnesota St. Paul campus. Several vitamins are produced exclusively in China, while others are also primarily produced in China by a few manufacturers. Likewise, most vitamin manufacturers produce human and animal grade vitamins using the same quality assurance and controls that meet human grade standards. Most meeting participants consider the risk of ASF introduction from vitamins to be low but recognize that, if contaminated, vitamins can be a vehicle for virus introduction in the U.S. Several research and development priorities were identified including 1) develop a surrogate for ASF virus for monitoring processes that can inactivate the virus if it was present, 2) develop third party biosecurity modules and audits that can be implemented for feed ingredient manufacturers, 3) conduct a risk assessment of virus transmission throughout the vitamin supply chain, and 4) explore the use of blockchain technology for greater transparency and trust in the vitamin supply chain. Several education and communication priorities were also identified. A clear, transparent, and unified message is needed to educate the feed and pork industry to decrease confusion and suspicion of the perceived risks of virus transmission in the vitamin supply chain. Key components of this story include: 1) what is known about ASF virus characteristics, survival, and inactivation, 2) general description of raw materials, chemical and fermentation processes used to produce various vitamins, 3) current quality assurance programs, 4) packaging and transport, 5) potential for cross contamination from other porcine derived feed ingredients in multi-species feed mills, 6) approved sources vs. brokers and traders, and 7) holding times, origin of carriers, and premix manufacturing processes used before delivery to feed mills and commercial swine farms. Vitamin suppliers have industry wide standards for ingredient safety that minimize the opportunity for virus introduction. However, pork producers are responsible for knowing their suppliers and asking the right questions to screen potential suppliers that do not follow standards of safety. A comprehensive description of the entire vitamin supply chain is needed and a unified, accurate, and consistent message to the pork industry.
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    African Swine Fever-Soybean Meal Supply China Workshop – Workshop Summary and Supplemental Information
    (2019-07-10) Shurson, Gerald C; Urriola, Pedro E; van de Ligt, Jennifer LG; Sullivan, Polly L; Sundberg, Paul
    An African swine fever-Soybean meal supply chain workshop involving key industry stakeholders was conducted on July 10, 2019 on the University of Minnesota St. Paul campus. The objectives were to 1) identify and discuss the various segments and potential risk factors of the soy supply chain in North America, 2) identify and discuss potential prevention, mitigation, and product differentiation (country of origin) strategies for soy products used in the U.S. pork industry, and 3) identify research and education needs related to foreign animal viruses and soy products. The group identified potential risk factors for African swine fever virus introduction into the United States through imported soy products including 1) contamination during transport, 2) inadequate virus inactivation in soybean hulls during processing if contaminated, 3) imported organic soybean products used in fertilizers, and 4) risk of virus spreading through manure and other routes if introduced. Prevention, mitigation, and differentiation strategies were discussed and included 1) develop a diagnostic test to assess African swine fever virus in feed, 2) explore alternatives to inter-port shipment of soybean products among U.S. ports of entry, and 3) identify and educate importers about consequences of African swine fever virus introduction and suggest prevention and mitigation methods. Several research and education outcomes were identified including 1) improve data collection on country of origin for imported soy products, 2) write a report describing the soy supply chain including reasons for imports and benefits of exports, 3) conduct more research on survivability of the virus in different feed ingredient matrices that is reproducible, 4) determine whether the virus is present in feed ingredient supply chains, 5) determine the most accurate methods to assess virus survival, and 6) determine specific factors that cause the African swine fever virus to survive in soybean meal for extended periods of time.
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    Risk assessment of feed ingredients of porcine origin as vehicles for transmission of Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus (PEDV)
    (2015) Sampedro, Fernando; Snider, Tim; Bueno, Irene; Bergeron, Justin; Urriola, Pedro E; Davies, Peter R
    The objective of this project was to assess the likelihood that feed ingredients of porcine origin may function as vehicles of Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus (PEDV) transmission via feed. The scope of the assessment included rendered ingredients, ingredients derived through spray drying porcine blood, and ingredients derived by hydrolyzing porcine tissues. For any feed ingredient, the risk of the release of infective PEDV is a function of: (1) the concentration of PEDV in the raw materials; (2) the virus survival after ingredient processing (3) the survival of virus during post-processing storage and distribution; and 4) the likelihood of post-processing contamination incorporating PEDV into the finished ingredient. No data on PEDV contamination of raw materials were available for the rendering and hydrolyzed protein sources. Estimates of PEDV contamination of liquid plasma were available from industry, based on PCR testing of ingredients over time, and were used in quantitative modeling. The assessments made in this project were constrained by a paucity of specific data on several aspects that are germane to the risk of PEDV transmission in feed ingredients of porcine origin. Available data on thermal inactivation of PEDV indicate that risk of virus surviving the processes of rendering and hydrolysis (peptone production) are negligible. The time and temperature profiles used in spray-drying are much less severe, and therefore, the possibility of virus survival is inherently greater if non-thermal mechanisms are ignored. Overall, currently available data indicate that probability of PEDV surviving the spray-drying process and current commercial storage periods is extremely small. In the course of the project, several data gaps were identified that contributed to the uncertainty. Risk assessment is an iterative process and the findings of this report may be revised in the future if new knowledge becomes available.
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    Understanding the vitamin supply chain and relative risk of transmission of foreign animal diseases
    (2019) Shurson, Gerald C; Urriola, Pedro E
    The U.S. pork industry is dependent on vitamins manufactured in China because there are limited, and in some cases, there are no other country of origin options to meet industry volume demands. Initial studies have provided evidence that the African Swine Fever virus (ASFv) can survive in choline chloride, but not vitamin D3. However, it is unknown if this virus can survive in other vitamins. The risk of ASFv or other Foreign Animal Diseases (FAD) being introduced from China into the U.S. through vitamin imports appears to be low, but the impact of introduction is high. Vitamin manufacturing involves many highly technical chemical or fermentation processes that utilize commonly accepted quality control certification schemes and sanitary processes to meet human food grade, and often pharmaceutical standards in the U.S. and E.U. Although gelatin used in manufacturing vitamin A and D3 originates from pigskin, there appears to be sufficient thermal treatments used in extracting, concentrating, and sterilizing gelatin to inactivate pathogens. Some vitamin suppliers visit and audit corn cob suppliers for choline chloride production to verify that there is a killing step in corn cob carrier production. Only clean, unused, sealed containers and materials (e.g. pallets) are used for packaging and transporting vitamins to the U.S., usually under hazardous materials shipping standards due to high purity. All damaged containers and packages containing vitamins during transport are destroyed and not used in manufacturing swine feeds. Once purified vitamins arrive in the U.S., they are distributed to U.S. vitamin premix manufacturers for blending with carriers. Only carriers produced in North America are used by the U.S. vitamin premix manufacturers to minimize the risk of cross-contamination. However, there are a few unconventional brokers and traders that may import vitamins from China and market them using limited if any biosecurity and quality assurance control procedures. Obtaining vitamins and premixes from these entities increases the risk of ASFv introduction. Pork producers are responsible for selecting reputable suppliers of all feed ingredients by asking appropriate questions to avoid potential suppliers that do not follow standards of feed safety. Vitamins are unique compared to other feed ingredients because they are sensitive to high heat treatment and pH, which can substantially reduce their nutritional value if these types of virus mitigation treatments are applied.
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    Guidelines for developing a risk-based plan to mitigate virus transmission from imported feed ingredients
    (2019) Schettino, Daniella N; van de Ligt, Jennifer LG; Sampedro, Fernando; Shurson, Gerald C; Urriola, Pedro E
    There is increasing concern regarding the risk of swine disease transmission via feed ingredients, whether imported or domestically produced. This risk may be reduced in the feed ingredient supply chain by identifying and implementing preventive controls (supply chain, sanitation, transportation, and process) at different steps of the chain. The objective of this study was to develop a practical guide to help feed ingredient suppliers and buyers to safely manufacture, package, transport, and use feed ingredients in swine feeding programs. The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) provides the basis of this study because these regulations require proactive risk-based preventive control processes that are applied in the food supply chain to prevent or reduce the risk of hazards from being present in the final product. Using this conceptual framework, implementation of preventive controls in the feed production chain can control or decrease the potential introduction of foreign animal viruses through feed ingredients into the U.S. A decision tree was developed as a first step in identifying preventive controls and potential high-risk feed ingredient sourcing scenarios. A case-study using Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus (PEDV) and the corresponding decision tree was developed as an illustration on how to use this new approach. Although this approach is based on swine viral diseases, it can serve as a template for other pathogenic viruses and species.
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    Blockchain Technology and the Potential Applicability in the Feed Industry - Condensed
    (2019-04) Zhang, Yue; Lee, Soomin; van de Ligt, Jennifer L.G.
    Blockchain applications offer the feed supply chain incredible benefits and efficiencies in the goal to improve feed safety and animal health. The power of utilizing blockchain technology in feed supply chain transactions is in allowing parties to trade in the absence of a mediator or trusting relationship. This is the cornerstone of all blockchain applications - secure trading of ‘things’, both physical and virtual, without middlemen and historical relationships. However, implementation of the technology will experience hurdles and will require consensus among the industry for standards and methods of data collection and sharing. In addition, the cost of entry to access the data and who will pay for it will be a driving factor in the success of blockchain technology adoption. And finally, it should be recognized that blockchain applications depend absolutely on the reputability and accuracy of the data included in the blocks that are recorded in the chain.
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    Blockchain Technology and the Potential Applicability in the Feed Industry
    (2019-04) Zhang, Yue; Lee, Soomin; van de Ligt, Jennifer L.G.
    Information on the current applications of blockchain in food systems and the potential applicability, uses, and limitations of blockchain for feed ingredients common to the swine industry was gathered from a multitude of sources. The information on applications representative of supply chain logistics for imported feed ingredients was evaluated and limitations of blockchain in tracing lots of packaged ingredients vs. ingredients in bulk transportation was assessed. Overall, blockchain application is a viable technology to ensure traceability of feed ingredients. Blockchain provides key benefits including transaction security, auditability, and transparency. However, these benefits are accompanied by costs including, most importantly, the need for all-in participation and a value-driven incentive to participate that is shared across the supply chain. In addition, due to the bulk commodity nature of many feed ingredients common to the swine industry, traceability to individual manufacturer or producer through any technology becomes limited to the largest storage and/or transportation unit in the supply chain. Ingredients that move through the supply chain as discreetly packaged products, whether in kilogram packages or metric ton super sacks, have an easier entry into and more optimal traceability within blockchain technology. These concepts were modeled into a scenario for potential soybean shipments including where suppliers may verify the implementation of key preventive controls to decrease the risk of disease transmission via feed distribution.