Resistance to last-ditch antibiotic has spread farther than anticipated

Eighteen months ago, a gene that confers resistance to colistin — known as an ‘antibiotic of last resort’ — emerged in bacteria from pigs in China. Since then, the resistance gene, called mcr-1, has been found around the world at an alarming rate, according to several presentations at the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana, last week.

In some places, nearly 100% of farm animals carry mcr-1, and an increasing number of people do as well. The gene’s spread is one of the clearest examples of how antibiotic use on farms can lead to resistance in human infections, says Lance Price, an antibiotic researcher at George Washington University in Washington


Farming2020 Marks a Major Shift for the New Zealand Agtech Ecosystem


Editor’s Note: Peter Wren-Hilton is founder at Wharf42. Wharf42 was established in 2012 to support early stage Kiwi tech companies connect with Silicon Valley’s vast innovation ecosystem. It’s also a cofounder of WNT Ventures. This year he organized New Zealand’s first agtech conference Farming2020 and here offers his key takeaways from the event.

New Zealand’s annual Techweek initiative has just ended. Over 270 tech-focused events, representing multiple tech domains, were held across this South Pacific nation last week. Farming2020 was Techweek 2017’s signature event, giving centre stage to the country’s rapidly emerging agtech sector.

Farming2020 was hosted at the Livestock Improvement Corporation (LIC)‘s Innovation Farm in New Zealand’s dairy heartland, the Waikato. It included an on-farm exhibition, where many of New Zealand’s most exciting startup and early stage agtech companies demonstrated their tech. In the adjacent Hooper Innovation Centre, major New Zealand agribusinesses detailed their strategies for increasing engagement with the country’s emerging agtech sector, over three days of intense presentations

$10 million approved for DEXA installations



22 May 2017

Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) will invest up to $10 million to co-fund the installation of DEXA objective measurement systems in red meat processing plants following multiple requests to accelerate the adoption of the technology.

Under the project, MLA will work with willing partners to develop a single scientific measurement of lean meat yield – and systems to collect and use data across supply chains for future research and development in genetics, animal health and husbandry, processing automation and other productivity improvements on and off farm

MLA Managing Director Richard Norton said the DEXA installations would be funded via matching contributions from participating processors and MLA Donor Company (MDC).

Mr Norton said MLA had already received project submissions from Gundagai Meat Processors, Frewstal Pty Ltd, Wagstaff Cranbourne Pty Ltd and Teys Australia, but also invited expressions of interest from other beef and sheepmeat processors.

“This project is an important part of MLA’s investment in the research and development of objective measurement systems that our red meat and livestock industry can use to make precise assessments and better commercial decisions,” Mr Norton said.$10-million-approved-for-dexa-installations/

Roy opens doors for WA agribusiness

Roy duncanson is the force behind the Agribusiness Council of Australia.

AGRIBUSINESS is often defined as the movement of products from “paddock to plate”, so it is perhaps fitting that the force behind the Agribusiness Council of Australia (ACA) Roy Duncanson has had experience in all aspects of that………

Dunn awarded ASWGA life member

Kevin Dunn was awarded honorary life member of the ASWGA by president Simon Cameron at this year's association conference, held in Hamilton.

Kevin Dunn was awarded honorary life member of the ASWGA by president Simon Cameron at this year’s association conference, held in Hamilton.

Former Australian Superfine Woolgrowers Association (ASWGA) president Kevin Dunn’s profound commitment to the fine wool industry meant one year he could not put his rams out for joining.

Superfine sheep has been the dominant part of Horsham fine wool producer Kevin Dunn’s, Avondale Hills, life, which was why he was awarded lifetime member of the ASWGA during the annual conference this week