9 March 2001

Care needed with disinfectant

USING the correct types of disinfectant for foot-and-mouth and adhering to specified dilution rates will ensure that products help control the disease.

Independent vet consultant, Tony Andrews says that all MAFFs approved list products show which organisms they are effective against and the dilution rate for that purpose.

Dairy producers are also being advised by dairies to avoid using products containing phenols, but these are not easily identified on product labels.

"Too much phenol can taint milk. As a crude rule of thumb if you put water with the disinfectant and it goes white it contains phenols," says Dr Andrews.

MAFF also advises ensuring disinfectant is kept clean and renewed daily. Dirt may make the disinfectant useless, it warns. A brush for scrubbing footwear should also be provided with the disinfectant for maximum effect.

The ministry adds that all vehicles entering and leaving the farm should have wheels sprayed with disinfectant.

All farms should also aim to have one combined entrance and exit with a locked gate. This will help producers stop non-essential visitors entering the farm, says MAFF.

Essential deliveries should take place at a farm boundary where possible and all deliveries to the farm should be recorded.

A list of MAFF-approved products is available from your local Animal Health Office or on MAFFs web-site at www.maff.gov.uk

lCitric acid, sodium carbonate and sodium hydroxide are effective against foot-and-mouth organisms, but are made more effective when detergent and wetting agents are added, not as stated last week. &#42