As part of their sustainability and preventive health policy, Morrisons briefed DVC to work with a group of Arla dairy producers to reduce the reliance of antibiotics and other medicines within the dairy supply chain.
I fully utilised my own veterinary expertise, plus that of other veterinary specialists, and coupled this with an ability to communicate effectively with farmers. To bring about change, I produced a report called “Herd Health Management: A Comprehensive Guide” which is designed to be used in conjunction with producers’ own vets, as well as for farmers to dip into as a point of reference. The guide is informative but gently challenging too, to stimulate discussion and ultimately improvements in herd health management and the adoption of preventive strategies.
Following the project, the Morrisons producer group demonstrated a real understanding of the need to reduce reliance on antibiotics and have enthusiastically embraced the principles extolled in the guide. This is good news for Morrisons, their customers ‐ and the farmers themselves.
DVC has subsequently worked with Arla and Morrisons on other dairy herd health initiatives, for example better management of lameness through Farmer Action Groups.