The following announcement was released by The Pork Checkoff on December 3, 2016. The full article is located here.
Contact: Cindy Cunningham
National Pork Board
Find-A-Vet Tool Helps U.S. Pig Farmers Locate a Veterinarian
Valid Veterinarian Relationship Essential to Comply with New Antibiotic Regulations
DES MOINES, IOWA – Dec. 6, 2016 – Find-A-Vet is a timely tool created by GlobalVetLINK that assists U.S. pig farmers who are searching for a veterinarian for their animals. The Pork Checkoff, collaborating with the Ames, Iowa-based company, is making this online tool more accessible to all producers by linking it directly to the Pork Checkoff’s homepage at pork.org.
The online tool allows animal owners to quickly find a veterinarian in their area who offers services, such as the establishment of a veterinary-client-patient relationship (VCPR) and/or a Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD). Both a VCPR and a VFD will be necessary to use many in-feed antibiotics starting on Jan. 1, 2017. To use Find-A-Vet, producers will need to enter their ZIP code to search for the veterinarians closest to their location.
“This is just another example of how the Pork Checkoff is trying to help make the adjustment in antibiotic regulations easier for all producers,” said National Pork Board President Jan Archer, a pig farmer from Goldsboro, North Carolina. “While many of us already have a well-established working relationship with a veterinarian, we know some producers and youth exhibitors who live in places with few pigs may not have easy access to veterinary help. We hope this tool will help with that potential scenario.”
Dr. Dave Pyburn, senior vice-president of science and technology at the Pork Checkoff, says that having a valid VCPR is critical as we enter 2017 because that’s the only way you can legally obtain a VFD for in-feed antibiotics or a prescription for medications used via water, as required by FDA regulations.
“Exploring the information on the Antibiotics Resource Center on the pork.org website is a good way to learn more about specific issues and scenarios related to the new regulations,” Pyburn said. “With less than a month to go, the Checkoff is continuing to expand its materials and information to assist producers in this momentous change in how antibiotics are used and obtained. If everyone takes these steps now, we’ll be ready to go Jan. 1.”
The National Pork Board has responsibility for Checkoff-funded research, promotion and consumer information projects and for communicating with pork producers and the public. Through a legislative national Pork Checkoff, pork producers invest $0.40 for each $100 value of hogs sold. Importers of pork products contribute a like amount, based on a formula. The Pork Checkoff funds national and state programs in advertising, consumer information, retail and foodservice marketing, export market promotion, production improvement, science and technology, swine health, pork safety and sustainability and environmental management.
For information on Checkoff-funded programs, pork producers can call the Pork Checkoff Service Center at (800) 456-7675 or check the Internet at pork.org.