Professional Dairy Producers Foundation



National & World Ag News Headlines
FDA Changes Coming for Livestock Owners
USAgNet - 12/30/2016

Livestock owners across the nation are encouraged to be prepared for the upcoming Food and Drug Administration changes to antibiotics that will go into effect on Jan. 1.

Craig Payne, director of veterinary medical extension at the University of Missouri, said there are two main changes. The first deals with medically-important feed grade or water soluble antibiotics that have a claim on the label, such as improved rate of weight gain or improved feed efficiency. These claims will be removed from the label and the antibiotic will no longer be permissible to be used for those production purposes.

The second change deals with the same antibiotics, many of which have been available over the counter in the past. On Jan. 1, these antibiotics will no longer be available in that regard, instead requiring veterinarian oversight.

Livestock owners will need a Veterinary Feed Directive for feed-grade antimicrobials and a prescription for water-soluble antimicrobials. Photo by Kyle Spradley.Livestock owners will need a Veterinary Feed Directive for feed-grade antimicrobials and a prescription for water-soluble antimicrobials. Photo by Kyle Spradley.

"The FDA created a list of medically important antimicrobials in 2003 that are important in human medicine," Payne said. "Any of the antimicrobials that are on that list will be impacted by the upcoming changes."

Antimicrobials are agents that destroy microorganisms or hinders their growth. Antibiotics are used against bacteria, for example.

Several antibiotics have claims on the label for improved rate of weight gain or improved feed efficiency. Payne said they are typically fed at low levels over a long period of time.

"The FDA is eliminating production uses by making these label changes," he said. "They want the antibiotics used just for treatment, prevention or control of disease."

For feed-grade antimicrobials, livestock owners will have to have a Veterinary Feed Directive. The VFD is a form that a veterinarian fills out. That form is given to the feed distributor, who then issues the medicated feed that the order is for. For water-soluble antimicrobials, a prescription from a veterinarian will be required.

"The veterinarian-client-patient relationship (VCPR) is at the heart of all of this," Payne said. "It's not a new concept. Veterinarians have issued prescription medications for years and they need to have a VCPR in place to do this. A VCPR means the veterinarian must be acquainted with the care and keeping of the animals before they issues a VFD or prescription."

Livestock owners need to develop a relationship with a veterinarian in preparation for the changes.

Send this article to a friend


Other National Headlines

Roth Manufacturing
Grand View Safety Grooving
Copyright 2019 - USAgNet.com. All Rights Reserved.