The NPA is ready to fight a future ban on the use of zinc oxide in animal feed, following recommendations to that effect which have been put to the European Commission by the European Medicines Agency’s Committee on Veterinary Medicinal Products (CVMP).
The association says that such a ban would remove a key tool in controlling post-weaning diarrhoea and that it would also “significantly hamper the pig sector’s drive to reduce antibiotic usage”.
“We will fight this,” said NPA chief executive, Zoe Davies (pictured above). “We will be making our feelings known at UK and EU level and establishing, as a priority, what grounds we have to oppose a ban.
“We know zinc oxide is an effective product and has significant benefits for animal health and welfare.
“We will be arguing very strongly that the negative impact on pig health and our drive to reduce antibiotic usage will outweigh any so far unproven risks.”
The NPA reaction follows a meeting last week during which the CVMP recommended withdrawing existing marketing authorisations and refusing to grant new ones for veterinary medicinal products containing zinc oxide destined to be administered orally to food producing species.