Longford farmers advised that attempts to stifle competition must be addressed

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IFA

IFA Animal Health Chairman Pat Farrell

IFA Animal Health Chairman Pat Farrell has strongly rejected the guidance issued by the Veterinary Council of Ireland for vets providing a service to farmers and the issuing of prescriptions.

The IFA Chairman said the guidance is a gross interference with the functioning of a competitive service provision to farmers and is at odds with the clearly set out legislative criteria in relation to the prescribing of veterinary medicines for animals.

“This guidance document is a blatant attempt to stifle competition in the provision of veterinary services, is unacceptable and must be checked by the relevant authorities,” he added.

“Attempting to justify these guidelines in the context of AMR is misleading and ignores the real concern of the vested economic interest of prescribers of antibiotics in the supply of these products.”

Meanwhile, Department of Agriculture and all other stakeholders are proactively engaged in a collaborative process to address AMR concerns and are making significant progress.

“This process has been ignored and undermined by the Veterinary Council document,” continued Mr Farrell.

“The new EU Veterinary Medicinal Products Regulation is at an advanced stage and this sets out the key prescribing criteria for veterinary medicinal products.

“It includes distinguishing between antimicrobials and other standard products such as vaccines.

“These criteria will be discussed by DAFM with all stakeholders over the coming months and will set out the legislative criteria that will have to be complied with.”

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