At our conference on June 16th, the European Commission referred to the need to increase availability of veterinary medicines by completing the single market in this sector. Every vet, farmer and pet owner should have every medicine available to them in every part of the European Union. The European Commission also spoke about the need to reduce the administrative burden. It is interesting to note that one of the greatest burdens relates to the cost of packaging and labelling! We can reduce this burden quite simply by minimising the information on the label to that which is absolutely necessary and with the use of pictograms, we can avoid the need for translation – all other information can be included in a pack insert in the appropriate language.
Another message that came from our conference is the broad agreement never to repeat work and to ensure that all decisions have application across the European Union – this will also greatly help to reduce the administrative burden.
As may be appreciated, we can achieve a lot by making simple changes to the legislation. We look forward to your support in advocating a common sense approach.
The public response to the consultation in relation to the Medicated Feed legislation was fantastic with over 250 submissions received! We support the European Commission in its efforts to ensure that medicated feed can be practically provided to farmers to protect the health and so welfare of their animals across the European Union – again a single market issue.
As mentioned in the previous edition, we welcome the European Parliament Resolution on antibiotics. It strikes a balance between the need for these products to protect the health and so welfare of animals whilst also recognising that we need to use them responsibly. As IFAH-Europe, we have a goal to ensure that antibiotics work now and in 20 years time. We promote Responsible Use via EPRUMA www.epruma.eu and we support the use of diagnostics to guide future use. We support strict adherence to use according to the label and the ‘cascade’ which provides limited discretion to the vet. We look forward to the European Commission communication expected in November providing orientation for future policy direction.
In a debate that is fuelled by emotion, it is important to identify any problems that exist and focus our action on addressing those problems. In this way, we ensure Responsible Use and move towards our goal of ensuring that antibiotics work in 20 years time.
Wishing you an enjoyable and relaxing summer break over the next couple of months.
Declan O’ Brien