Getting questions answered about the VFD

The Veterinary Feed Directive that goes into effect January 1 is a complex issue that has livestock producers asking a lot of questions.


As the deadline for the FDA’s Veterinary Feed Directive nears, Arizona cow/calf producer and livestock feed store operator Barbara Jackson told panelist during Wednesday’s discussion outside of veterinarians, she doesn’t think the livestock sector has a good grasp of what the VFD is.  “I resell feed in my feed store from a half-dozen different feed mills,” she says.  “Only two have reached out to me about VFD.”

She says there leaves a lot of grey area.  “I want an answer for what happens on December 31st when this product is on my shelf,” she states.  “On January 1 – am is SOL?  Who is responsible for that as a producer and as a reseller?”

As for the answer to Jackson’s question – a representative with the FDA said it is a work in progress and there will likely be a grace-period for feed already in possession.

New Mexico beef cattle producer Jay Hill calls the directive counter-intuitive and tells Brownfield it is more red tape for the nation’s farmers and ranchers.  “Look at some of our record-keeping,” he says.  “We can’t keep an electronic log of our medical practices and our VFD usage.   In essence – I think we’re seeing a little bit of back-peddling in our regulations.”

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