Ten things to know about VFD

The way antibiotics are used on the farm will soon be changing, and during this transition period, hog farmers are encouraged to prepare for the adjustment now. Basically, this regulatory process is about modifying the way feed- and water-based antimicrobials are utilized in animal production.

In 2012, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration began the regulatory journey to eliminate the use of antimicrobials that are medically important to human illness for growth promotion and bring veterinary oversight to therapeutic use to treat, control or prevent diseases. Officially, the FDA issued the proposal for the Veterinary Feed Directive final rule on antibiotic use in June.

For producers the regulatory change will result in the removal of some antibiotic products or eliminate growth promotion use of the antibiotics. Growth promotion and nutritional efficiency labels on medically important antibiotics will be removed by December 2016. During this transition time, the FDA is working with animal health sponsors to cease claims on antimicrobial products labeled for growth promotion or migrate the production claim to disease prevention.

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