18 April 2015 | Online since 2003



27 June 2014|News

Second cattle health report reveals some progress but emerging challenges


The second Cattle Health and Welfare Group (CHAWG) report to examine the state of GB’s cattle health and welfare, published this week, highlights the need to prioritise health and welfare issues, set defined targets and collaborate across the nations in achieving measurable results.

The Chairman of CHAWG, Tim Brigstocke, says this 2014 report reveals both the progress made in the past few years in addressing some key issues, but also the scale of challenges facing the industry from changing weather and economic patterns.

“There is some definite and tangible progress in efforts to tackle lameness, mastitis, Johne’s Disease, BVD and mortality, and the implementation of welfare outcomes within Red Tractor are to be very much welcomed,” he says.

“But we are also facing evolving challenges, such as a surge in liver fluke following recent extreme weather and novel diseases such as a new strain of BVD. The rise in imported animals – especially replacement dairy heifers – is another risk, unless we can implement more stringent measures to minimise the importation of disease along with these animals.”

Overall, he says the industry needs to prioritise its key issues, set quantifiable targets and develop closer relationships between Scottish, English and Welsh authorities to share best practice and data, as disease does not respect geographical boundaries.

“For the past 18 months we’ve been talking about the concept of an umbrella GB ‘organisation’ to provide industry alignment, coordination and progress evaluation,” he explains. “This would ensure that decisions were based on the best available intelligence and maximise the potential to improve cattle health and welfare performance.

“The industry also needs performance statistics upon which to base informed decisions on health and welfare needs. Those funding or even implementing health and welfare-related initiatives should be setting these quantifiable targets to identify whether the approach was successful against its original objectives.”

The three Chief Veterinary Officers (CVOs) in GB have welcomed the report, with Nigel Gibbens, CVO for the UK, commenting particularly on the report’s coverage of the issue of antimicrobial resistance.

He says: “It is pointless to debate the relative importance of animal and human use of antimicrobials in driving resistance in human pathogens; we need to conserve antimicrobials for the future for use in animals as well as humans.

“We cannot support husbandry practices that rely on routine antibiotic use, and when antimicrobials are needed for treatment they must be used effectively. If we don’t act, the initiative will be taken out of our hands, so I am pleased that CHAWG is fully engaged with the Responsible Use of Medicines Alliance (RUMA) on the five year strategy to tackle this issue.”

The CVOs for Wales and Scotland, Christianne Glossop and Sheila Voas respectively, both highlight the role the report will play in providing an evidence base towards the development of new health and welfare frameworks in both countries.

Ms Glossop says: “To operate effectively within the new framework, we will require a sound evidence base, drawing data from a wide range of reliable sources. CHAWG is uniquely placed to provide insight into the challenges facing our cattle industry, with representation from all relevant specialist groups and organisations.”

Sheila Voas adds: “A new strategy for Scotland is being prepared in consultation with stakeholders. The strategy will build on the progress that has been made by identifying steps that can be taken by government and industry to enhance animal health, tackle endemic diseases and improve welfare as well as to prepare to meet emerging threats.

“CHAWG can help us achieve our objectives by using the collective knowledge of a wide range of organisations to focus and prioritise our efforts on the most important cattle health and welfare problems.”

Download



Comments


No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment

To post comment without approval login or register

Display name

Please enter your name

Email (optional)
Comment

Please enter your comment

Post Comment

Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.

Some error on your process.Please try one more time.



Jobs


9 April 2015
Assistant Manager - Elginhaugh Farm - Farmhouse Inns
Assistant Manager - Elginhaugh Farm, Lasswade. We are looking for an Assistant Manager at the Elginhaugh Farm, Lasswade....

9 April 2015
Demand Planner
Food, FMCG, Ready Meals, Dairy, Bakery, Meat, Beef, Pork, Lamb, Fresh Produce. Demand Planner , Food, Staffordshire, c.£25,00...

17 April 2015
Nanny Required , Monday Friday, Hampstead
Dairy, nuts, fish and eggs, so an experience of looking after babies with an allergy would be a bonus. A nanny is required AS...

1 April 2015
Field Service Engineer / Agriculture Engineer
Our client are looking for experienced Field Service Engineer / Agriculture Engineer to work on Agriculture Machinery equipme...

15 April 2015
Research Associate - BlightSense (Fixed Term)
Blightsense is a BBSRC/IUK funded project that develops precision agriculture methods to protect against Potato blight, which...





Related Companies


Top stories you may have missed
10 April 2015 | Agri Safety

Final phase of Scotland's war on BVD

The permanent eradication of Bovine Viral Diarrhoea [BVD] in Scottish cattl...


10 April 2015 | Dairy

Dairy farmers competitiveness will be te...

The abolition of milk quotas in Europe on 1st April has resulted in a numbe...


10 April 2015 | Cattle

EU milk sector growth 'dependent on expo...

The top 14 milk producing countries in Europe will increase their productio...


10 April 2015 | News

Could the rural vote hold the key to the...

Matt Ware is the NFU's head of government and parliamentary affairs, based ...


10 April 2015 | Arable

Action needed to boost farmgate prices i...

There is a 'desperate need' to improve farmgate returns given low incomes a...


9 April 2015 | Arable

OSR damage risks early Sclerotinia infec...

Rapid stem extension, after a slow start to spring, is likely to create spl...


9 April 2015 | Finance

Time for a farm rent revolution?

The time has come for landlords to expect to see reductions in farm rents, ...


8 April 2015 | Cattle

Cogent strengthens reputation for high c...

Cogent’s reputation as a source of the highest calibre sires has been enhan...


8 April 2015 | Arable

Exotic plant fungus a 'serious threat to...

The spread of exotic and aggressive strains of a plant fungus is presenting...


7 April 2015 | Animal Health

Share information to tackle food fraud, ...

The FSA’s new Food Crime Unit wants the industry to share information, some...