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MEPs agree new rules to administer medicines through feed, combat antimicrobial resistance

Brussels, 15 March 2023

MEPs today voted on new rules that will enable a more optimal, efficient and responsible administration of medicines in animal feed. Members of the European Parliament’s Agriculture Committee adopted the report by a large majority, which seeks to harmonise the rules for placing on the market of medicated feed across Europe. Allowing veterinarians to treat sick animals using approved medicines in feed (an important and sometimes optimal administration route) offers an additional and practical method of ensuring the continuous healthcare of Europe’s animals and a safe and sustainable food production.


IFAH-Europe welcomes the Committee’s efforts in improving the proposal, and in particular, its efforts to ensure that feed will be able to take its place alongside other recognised oral means of administering veterinary medicines. Moreover, the proposed amendments will mean that EU legislation on this subject will be both scientifically sound and technologically up-to-date. Alongside the revision of the legislation on veterinary medicines, greater harmonisation of the rules governing the use of approved medicines through feed is a crucial step in the fight against antimicrobial resistance.

Medicated feed is a route of administration; the licensed veterinary medicine is given to the animal via their feed on the basis of a veterinary prescription. It avoids handling the animals needlessly (which may cause stress to the animals) and it is a method that is suitable for food-producing as well as companion animals.

“IFAH-Europe supports the efforts to align key definitions with the proposed Veterinary Medicines Regulation – also currently undergoing a review - which will be important for the future smooth operation of the legislation. We welcome the measures put in place for anticipated production and changes to the method of distribution, which will permit the development of medicated feed for the treatment of chronic diseases in companion animals. This will bring real benefits to pets on long-term medication, and also to their owners in terms of ease of administration,” said IFAH-Europe Secretary General Roxane Feller.

The Parliament will now enter in negotiations with the Member States to finalise the text.

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