3 August 2001

OPs off market for brief time

OP DIPS are likely to disappear from the market for a short period in early autumn, until new technology for dispensing them safely is approved by the Veterinary Products Committee.

The temporary licence, granted by DEFRA allowing a tap dispensing system to be used until safer dispensing alternatives could be developed, will expire at the end of August, says vet Chris Lewis.

"There are safe closed dispensing systems in the pipeline, but there may be a period when OPs cannot be marketed before they are approved. Hopefully, these will be available for the main autumn dipping period."

This view is echoed by Stephen Dawson, technical executive at the National Office of Animal Health. "The VPC considered alternative dispensing system designs for OPs submitted by animal health companies at its July meeting, but had some outstanding questions. Companies are addressing these, but the VPC does not meet in August, so it will be September before issues can be discussed."

Where required, dipping can be done with OPs before the end of August which will give 56 days protection from scab, says Mr Lewis. &#42