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Meeting the consumer's demands.

AM: What products/services does Pfizer Animal Health currently offer?

SS: We offer the broadest line of products in the world to improve the health, wellness and productivity of dairy and beef cattle, swine and horses. We're proud to offer livestock owners outstanding, innovative anti-infectives along with a complete line of industry-leading biologicals, parasiticides, reproductive aids, mastitis preventives and treatments and associated programs which help them best manage animal productivity, quality and value, and, ultimately, ensure a safe food supply.

AM: What new products/services is Pfizer bringing to the livestock market this year?

SS: We take our responsibility as one of the industry's leaders very seriously and invest more heavily in research and development than any other animal health company. At the same time, we also are the largest investor in veterinarian and specialist services to help our customers successfully handle a myriad of animal health and quality challenges.

Today, the livestock industry and consumer preferences are more closely tied together than ever before. So we will continue to introduce products and specialized services that allow our customers to meet consumer preferences as they improve the health and productivity of their animals. To give you a sense of scope, Pfizer has launched some ten dairy products, including Spectramast and Orbeseal, and two major new livestock anti-infectives, Draxxin and Excede, in the past three years. We see that R&D investment trend continuing in our beef, swine, dairy and equine markets.

AM: What trends do you see in the livestock market?

SS: All of our efforts are geared towards the end-consumer's demand for higher quality food and, in some instances, verifiably higher quality. Working up the value chain to help improve food quality and safety is very important to us.

We believe that the focus on improving milk quality is and will continue to be front and center. We have added ten milk-quality specialists nationwide whose job is to help our customers address milk quality issues on their operations.

The demand for age and source-verified cattle is another current trend that we see driving market opportunity for producers who recognize the market will reward them for their extra efforts to produce high quality food. As a result, we've expanded our SelectVAC[R] pre-conditioning program to offer PVP age and source verification, which adds additional value to the cattle.

AM: What role does advertising/public relations have in your marketing activities?

SS: Neither Pfizer nor any of our competitors have the field staff to meet with every livestock producer. We need advertising, public relations and direct marketing to help us stay connected with our customers and market influencers. Communications in general helps us extend the reach of our field sales team, technical vets and other specialists who can't personally touch every farm but who can help educate and influence the management decisions of producers beyond their reach.

AM: Any other issues you would like to make the industry aware of?

SS: Communicating with food-chain stakeholders on Pfizer's efforts to support food safety, quality and an abundant, affordable food supply--the three major consumer demands--is a high priority. We all need to be cognizant of what organizations such as Wal-Mart, Costco and McDonalds are doing and what requirements they will place on the food industry to meet these demands.

Pfizer Animal Health is a division of Pfizer Inc, and human health is our top priority. Our medicines go through a battery of the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) tests to ensure their safety for the food supply. For instance, Draxxin was the first antimicrobial to receive the FDA's approval after a review of its microbial safety by a Veterinary Medical Advisory Committee (VMAC) that included physicians, microbiologists and veterinarians. The VMAC was assembled under the agency's Guidance 152 procedure to evaluate whether antimicrobials used in animals are "safe with respect to the potential for transfer of antimicrobial resistant organisms to humans."

Pfizer is sharing with the food chain information about Guidance 152 and other food-safety topics because it's important for retailers to understand that rigorous food-safety regulations are in place.

Name: Steve Shell

Title: Vice President, U.S. Cattle Business Unit

Career: Held various sales, marketing and communications management positions at Stauffer Chemicals, Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising, and American Cyanamid Company prior to joining Pfizer Animal Health.

Education: B.S. degree in Forest Resources & Conservation

Responsibilities: Oversees all U.S. cattle operations for Pfizer, including sales, marketing, brand management and customer communications, and veterinary operations.
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Publication:Agri Marketing
Date:Nov 1, 2006
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