The main event

by World Grain Staff
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More than 200 companies are scheduled to participate in Victam International 2007, which will showcase the latest feed and grain processing technology

by Arvin Donley

It’s not surprising that organizers of Victam International 2007 expect this year’s event to be the biggest ever.

What was once primarily a feed technology trade show, Victam, which is held every third year, now features equipment and services from a wide range of agribusiness sectors. More than 200 companies will participate in this year’s event, which will be held May 8-10 at the Jaarbeurs Exhibition Halls, in Utrecht, the Netherlands.

Victam International 2007 will specifically target the animal feed, petfood, aquafeed, grain processing and biomass processing/pelleting industries, said Henk Van de Bunt, general manager of Victam International.

"There are a number of reasons for the growing number of visitors attending Victam," Van de Bunt said. "I think the most important is that visitors, from wherever in the world, know that within the trade show they will find a large and diverse range of technology and ingredients for their industry. It is not only the feed industry that is represented at the show, but grain processing, flour milling, rice processing, biomass processing and pelleting technology, grain handling systems and much more."

Van de Bunt said responses from a questionnaire distributed to Victam attendees showed that a growing number of attendees are from Victam’s "non-core" industry sectors.

"This is because so many of our exhibitors are highly diversified in the industries they serve," he said. "A good example of this is biomass. Ten or 15 years ago, no one had heard of biomass, but now bioenergy alternatives are becoming increasingly important."

Not coincidentally, biomass pelleting is one of the topics to be discussed during five technical conferences that will be held in parallel with Victam International 2007. Here is a look at each of the technical conferences.

Held on May 8, Petfood Forum Europe 2007 is a technical conference designed for petfood manufacturers, marketers and suppliers. The petfood forum, which was established in 1993, will feature industry experts sharing their insights on a variety of topics, which include:

• "European Petfood Sales Trends," Eric Combelles, Euromonitor International;

• "Links Between Nutrition and Longevity," Anton Beynin, professor of veterinary medicine, Utrecht University;

• "Production Innovations," Galen Rokey, Wenger Manufacturing;

• "Update on Regulations," Thomas Meyer, European Pet Food Federation. There will also be sessions on advances in palatability testing, niche markets and new and functional/healthy ingredients.

Registration is 195 Euros and includes all education sessions plus breakfast, lunch and an afternoon refreshment break. To register, visit www.wattnet. com/petfoodforum/forumeurope.cfm or e-mail Marcia Riddle at Riddle@

Provimi, one of the world’s largest ingredient and additive manufacturers, is sponsoring a symposium on May 9, titled: "Optimize Profit Through Research and Nutrition."

Featured speakers will include Martin Tielen, director of FEFAC, and Luciano Roppa from Nutron Alimentos Brazil, who will share their thoughts on the development of the European feed industry and the global meat industry.

Professor Willem Verbeke, Erasmus University, will discuss how to go from being a product-oriented organization to one that is market oriented.

Also, Dr. Wim Van Haergingen of Van Haeringen Laboratory, and Paul Gerardy, director of Provimi’s Research and Technology Center, will demonstrate how new techniques like fingerprint (MCPC) and NIRS can be used to optimize profit. For registration information, visit

Also on May 9, the Aquafeed Horizons technical conference will begin. During the two-day event, industry experts will examine the latest concepts in feed development for aquatic species, cutting-edge aquafeed technologies and developments in aquaculture markets.

The conference will begin with a session that will reveal the scope of the market globally and within the rapidly growing sectors in Central and Eastern Europe. The two most important trends in aquaculture — organic aquafeed production and land-based recirculating land aquaculture farming systems — and their impact on feed will also be discussed.

Other topics to be discussed during the conference’s first day include:

•The potential of utilizing fishmeal al- ternatives and the technical issues involved;

• New information about the differences between marine and vegetable proteins used in aquafeed.

"Feed ingredients from marine resources and plants are different in compounds other than the micronutrients, and there is increasing evidence that these compounds may be more important in the evaluation of feed ingredients," said Dr. Anders Aksnes, a senior scientist for Bergen, Norway-based Fiskeriforskning and one of the speakers at the conference.

The conference will also look at ingredients such as phytase, which is becoming of greater interest to aquafeed formulators as plant-based ingredients are increasingly being incorporated into aquafeeds.

Processing technology will be the focus of the second day of the conference.

Dr. Mette Sorenson, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, will discuss results from a study carried out by AKVAFORSK and Aquaculture Protein Centre. The study examined the effect of raw ingredient formulations and extrusion processing parameters on the nutritional and technical quality of aquafeeds.

Key processing steps such as extrusion, vacuum coating, grinding and drying will also be covered in detail. To register, visit

A symposium on the ATEX Directive, a new regulation for the E.U. that applies to facilities where there is a risk of gas or dust explosions, is scheduled for May 9.

Tebodin CCE, organizer of the event, said the goal is to give those in attendance a practical guideline for how the ATEX regulations can be implemented in existing feed mills, flour mills and grain processing facilities in Europe.

An overview of all technical possibilities to prevent a dust explosion will be given, as well as solutions to reduce the effects of a dust explosion.

Because the guideline will generate extra investments that will have no direct yield, one of the sessions will help determine which investments are really needed and what solutions are most applicable to decrease certain risks. For more information, visit or contact J.A. Verheul at

A technical conference focusing on biomass pelleting will be held May 10. Industry leaders will discuss possible solutions for meeting the increasing demand for pellets in the bioenergy sector.

The European Biomass Association (AEBIOM), organizer of the conference, said speakers will focus on the state of the pellet market and propose ways to increase supply.

More specifically, they will discuss alternative materials that can be used to produce solid biomass such as energetic plants (miscanthus, willow, poplar), wood waste and others.

Presenters will discuss details such as how many boilers and stoves are currently installed in Europe, production trends, economic developments and the state of the legal framework.

For more information, visit