CheCS

Johne’s Press Release

(Bruce Lawson Welsh Black Cattle Soc)

Revamp of Johne’s Disease risk assessment will reward proactive farmers.

Cattle farmers who take sustained action to reduce the prevalence of Johne’s Disease in their herds will have their efforts recognised from 1 January 2013, thanks to a major revamp of the way in which the status of the disease is assessed on individual farms.

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Johnes Letter to Vet Record

Changes to CHeCS Technical concerning the Johne’s Disease programme

I write to update readers to a major change to the Cattle Health Certification Standards (CHeCS) Technical Document concerning the Johne’s Disease programme.

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The pioneering Hi Health cattle health scheme, adopted voluntarily by almost 1,000 producers throughout the Highlands and Islands, is a wonderful example of what ought to be happening in the rest of the UK, according to one of the Government’s top animal health advisors.

Six years of development work have already gone into the scheme and, during a visit to Inverness this week – to meet up with George Gunn, head of the epidemiology unit at SAC and one of the scheme’s main architects – Tim Brigstocke, chief executive of CHeCS (Cattle Health Certification Standards) said it was a credit to everyone concerned.

“We are seeing initiatives getting under way in places like Cornwall but, in general, the uptake of cattle health schemes is low.” he said.

“Hi Health shows what is possible and achievable and it is doing exactly what the Government gets excited about – working from a strong scientific base with strong farmer buy-in.

“If this can work in some parts of the UK, it begs the question of why not in others. It is great to see that, in the Highlands and Islands, scheme organisers have managed to persuade farmers to join and to stay committed, with interest and enthusiasm. It is a jolly good model.”

An annual farm health plan is set to become a necessity but the HI Health programme – spearhead by the Scottish Agricultural College and Highlands and Islands Enterprise with backing from Europe and Scottish Executive – is already steps ahead.

“Those who adopt the package can guarantee superior health and traceability of their animals and commitment of hundreds of producers and their vets to a wide-ranging disease eradication effort is undoubtedly helping to boost the areas already high reputation for quality livestock,” said HI Health chairman Michael Cursiter, who farms in Orkney.

Speaking at a meeting in Inverness, he said members believed in trying to enhance the Scottish beef industry by doing something different because everyone knew that it was impossible to compete against imports on price.

“By committing to Hi Health, we believe we have a head start and we would like to see others coming on board to expand still further the reservoir of accredited animals on Scotland’s farms. To be really meaningful, what we need is a critical mass.”

Elimination of previous disease problems and avoidance of new ones are the keys to the Hi Health’s success and the programme has been concentrating on monitoring and screening herds for diseases such as BVD, IBR, Leptospirosis and Johne’s Disease through close farmer/vet relationships.

Individual herd health plans are drawn up and prevention and/or control strategies implemented, with all members and vets keeping in regular touch through vet practice group meetings

BSE, foot and mouth and classical swine fever have raised the animal health issue to a higher plain i n recent months and, with Quality Meat Scotland now making a recommendation that all farmers undertake an annual health audit, producers in areas outwith the Highlands are making contact with Hi Health.

Mr Gunn said: “There are a number of health schemes and it’s a free market but we have built up considerable experience within HI Health. We have also expanded our scheme to include sheep and more and more groups of farmers are showing an interest in signing up.

“At the first level, we look at overall health but we find that almost everyone in Hi Health is motivated to expand the initial involvement from monitoring to disease eradication.”

Michael Durno, Auchorachan, Glenlivet has been appointed vice-chairman of HI Health and directors include Ruairdh Mackenzie, Heathmount, Tain; Ian Wilson, Wester Cairnglass, Gollanfield; and Jim MacMillan, Caithness.

Health Assurance programmes

Andrew J Taylor BD VetMB MRCVS
Veterinary Consultant
17 the Maltings
Wiltshire SN16 0RN

Health Assurance Programmes

  • The diseases
  • Eradication initiatives in the EU
  • Health assurance programmes in the UK
  • CHeCS

 

The Statutory diseases

  • Brucellosis
  • Enzootic Bovine Keukosis (EBL)
  • Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD)
  • Tuberculosis (TB)

    UK is officially free

The endemic diseases

  • Bovine Virus Diarrhoea (BVD)
  • Infectious Bovine Rhinotracheitis (IBR)
  • Johne’s Disease (paratuberculosis)
  • Leptospirosis
  • Campylobacteriosis
  • Salmonellosis
  • Digital Dermatitis

The endemic diseases

  • Bovine Virus Diarrhoea (BVD)
  • Infectious Bovine Rhinotracheitis (IBR)
  • Johne’s Disease (paratuberculosis)
  • Leptospirosis
  • Campylobacteriosis
  • Salmonellosis
  • Digital Dermatitis
    • Endemic in UK and much of Europe

The endemic diseases

  • BVD 65% dairy herds showed evidence of active infection
  • Johne’s disease: estimated 20% herds infected
    • Suspected higher prevalence in some breeds

The endemic diseases

  • Bovine Virus Diarrhoea (BVD)
  • Infectious Bovine Rhinotracheitis (IBR)
  • Johne’s Disease (paratuberculosis)
  • Leptospirosis
  • Campylobacteriosis
  • Salmonellosis
  • Digital Dermatitis
    • Endemic in UK and much of Europe
    • Some countries have national eradication programmes

The endemic diseases

  • Bovine Virus Diarrhoea (BVD)
  • Infectious Bovine Rhinotracheitis (IBR)
  • Johne’s Disease (paratuberculosis)
  • Leptospirosis
  • Campylobacteriosis
  • Salmonellosis
  • Digital Dermatitis
    • Endemic in UK and much of Europe
    • Some countries have national eradication programmes
    • Some countries have achieved national freedom

BVD Eradication Initiatives

  • Norway, Sweden
  • Denmark
  • Finland
  • Italy
  • Netherlands
  • Switzerland
FREE 

 

IBR Eradication Initiatives

  • Austria, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland FREE
  • Belgium
  • France
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Netherlands

Johne’s Disease Eradication Initiatives

  • Austria, Norway, Sweden
  • Finland
  • France
  • Netherlands
  • Switzerland
FREE

 

 

The endemic diseases –
Why control and / or eradicate them?

  • Damage and cost

BVD: The Damage

  • Transient male infertility
  • Depressed Female Fertility
  • Death of Embryos and Foetuses
  • Birth of persistently infected calves
  • Suppressed immune function in calves

    – Increased pneumonia and scour.

Johne’s Disease: The damage

  • Affects digestion
  • Impaired energy intake
  • Reduced disease resistance
  • Reduced milk production
  • Early culling

BVD and Johne’s Disease; The cost

  • Disease models

– BVD: £3500 per 100 cows per year
– Johne’s Disease; £1617 per 100 cows per year

  • Average losses
  • Based on value of commercial stock only

The endemic diseases –
Why control and/or eradicate them?

  • Damage and cost
  • Trade:

    – International

    – National

   

 Eradication Initiatives in UK

  • Voluntary schemes under umbrella of CHeCS

    – Herdcare (BioBest)
    – Premium Cattle Health Scheme (SAC)
    – HiHealth Highlands and Islands Scheme (SAC)

  • Less than 500 members:

    – Mainly beef herds
    – Mainly in Scotland

Cattle Health certification Standards (CHeCS)

  • Self-regulatory body for UK cattle health schemes
  • Non-trading organisation
  • Sets standards for control and eradication of non-statutory diseases to which all licensed health schemes must adhere
  • Herd health status in one scheme equivalent to that in all other schemes
  • Licensed schemes in UK compatible with those in other countries
   

CHeCS

  • Programmes for the monitoring, control and ultimate eradication of the four most important non-statutory diseases in UK:

    – Infectious Bovine Rhinotracheitis (IBR)
    – Leptospirosis
    – Johne’s Disease
    – Bovine Virus Diarrhoea (BVD)

CHeCS

  • Accreditation Programmes

    – To Demonstrate the herd is free from infection
    – To maintain freedom from infection
    – To allow sale of stock accredited free of infection

  • Screening and Eradication Programmes

    – To implement a control programme to reduce detrimental effects of disease on herd productivity
    – To allow sale of animals of known status
    – To achieve freedom from disease and accredited status

   

CHeCS

  • Vaccinated Monitored Free Programme (BVD)

    – To control BVD through vaccination of breeding herd
    – To demonstrate that control is effective and exposure of young stock to BVD has not occurred
    – To allow sale of stock accredited as being from a vaccinated herd and monitored free of active BVD infection
    – Appropriate for commercial herds selling stock for finishing
    – Herd status lower than that of BVD Accredited herds

CHeCS

  • Monitoring Programmes

    – Available only to dairy herds
    – Use regular bulk milk testing
    – Sample tool to give good assessment of disease status of herd
    – Sample every three months
    – Only available for IBR, BVD and Leptospirosis
    – No test currently available for testing milk samples for
    Johne’s disease
    – No requirements for herd health security

   

CHeCS

  • Monitoring Programmes

    – Measure level of antibodies in bulk milk sample
    – High titires indicate widespread infection (or use of vaccines)
    – Negative titres indicate likely freedom from current infection
    – Intermediate levels suggest presence of some infected animals
    – Information becomes more reliable and helpful as sequential results are added and trends become clear

Health Assurance Programmes

  • Pool of accredited herds free of disease
  • Quality assurance for herds selling breeding stock
  • Should be standard for sale of high value stock
  • “Why aren’t all pedigree breeders testing”
    Fiona Campbell 22 January 2003 BCCB Conference
  • Pedigree shows and sales to require testing
  • Declaration of health status on cattle passports
   

Health Assurance Programmes

Pyramid

Accredited
Screening and eradication
Monitoring
The rest

Health Assurance Programmes

Pyramid

Accredited
Screening and eradication
Monitoring
The rest

Need Critical Mass