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New Equine Disease Forum Seeks to Advance Protection

A brand new event hosted by the National Institute for Animal Agriculture and the US Animal Health Association will bring together industry officials to discuss equine health. The Equine Diseases Forum will be held January 19-21, 2016 at the Double Tree Hilton Hotel in Denver, Colo.

Over the last few years, animal health officials have been involved in an unprecedented number of equine disease incidents in the United States. The objective of the forum will be to provide the latest updates on disease threats to equine health, identify potential solutions for addressing current risks and to enhance the equine industry communications regarding equine health issues.

Equine industry professionals including association leaders, veterinarians, regulatory animal health officials and horse owners are encouraged to attend this meeting in order to gain a better understanding of this issue. The goal is to collaborate to determine what areas can and need to be improved to advance equine health and avoid disease outbreaks.

Click here for more information

Collaboration key to moving forward in antibiotic stewardship

Human and animal health experts came together in Atlanta, GA this past week to discuss issues related to antibiotic resistance and to work toward increased antibiotic stewardship in both human medicine and animal health. Throughout the dialogue, attention was focused on specific areas which can be measured in order to verify the progress made in reducing antimicrobial resistance.

Convened by the National Institute for Animal Agriculture (NIAA) and supported by several industry stakeholders, commodity groups, and public health entities, the national symposium brought together a broad cross-section of professionals to share relevant science and develop consensus on those key areas in which the most progress may be made.

“Antibiotics have been critical in human and veterinary medicine since the 1940’s and antibiotic resistance has been a challenge almost as long,” said Dr. Robert Tauxe, Deputy Director of the Division of Foodborne, Waterborne and Environmental Diseases, National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “Thus, with the ever changing antibiotic landscape, research, education and constantly improving stewardship is imperative.”

“Stewardship is a cycle, it is not something we do and then forget,” said Dr. Mike Apley, Professor of Production Medicine and Clinical Pharmacology at Kansas State University. “Stewardship is a commitment to a cycle.”

With increased antibiotic stewardship comes a greater need for more detailed record keeping and data management. “Emphasis on treatment records will be relied upon like they never have been before,” Apley said. “Increased federal regulations and requirements on veterinary feed directives and veterinary-client-patient-relationships, producers and veterinarians will have to keep treatment records like they do their finances.”

Key stakeholders in the battle against antimicrobial resistance within the livestock and human health communities worked on developing pathways to accomplish this goal. Under the direction of Tom Chapel, Chief Evaluation Officer for the CDC, attendees worked in groups to develop a roadmap to decrease antibiotic resistance while continuing to provide a safe and adequate food supply.

All sides of the table were represented in these discussions, including the retail community. Representatives from Costco, Tyson Foods and Yum Brands shed light on what the consumers are demanding and what they are doing in order to answer those demands.

“For consumers this is not a scientific discussion, it is an emotional one,” Donnie Smith, Chief Evaluation Officer of Tyson Foods. Parents want to know that they are doing the right thing for their children and that when their children need an antibiotic that it is going to be effective.

This requirement is also being asked of the human health community making it a no-brainer for veterinary and human health communities to work together. “Challenges are really too complex for any group to address alone,” said Dr. Arjun Srinivasan, Associate Director for Healthcare Associated Infection Prevention Programs in the Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion at the CDC.

NIAA plans to continue this discussion with future events and the production of the symposium’s proceedings which will be available soon at Also a White Paper on the event will be available by the end of 2015.

New Easy-to-Digest Quarterly:

Beef & Antibiotics: Facts, Figures and Fundamentals

This issue: Preventing Illegal Antibiotic Residues in Beef Products 

By Brian Lubbers, DVM, PhD, DACVCP

The prevention of illegal antibiotic residues is a continuous, coordinated effort between government agencies, veterinarians, and livestock producers that begins before the antibiotics is ever used in animals. READ MORE


Jim Fraley

Charter member, Jim Fraley, has been involved with the National Institute for Animal Agriculture (NIAA) on an individual and organizational basis for decades.

Fraley has been a member of the NIAA, and previously Livestock Conservation Institute (LCI), Board of Directors for nearly 15 years, serving as an executive committee member and secretary for five years. He has also been active on several committees and leader of the Animal Identification and Information Systems Council. He is currently the Co-Chair for the Animal Care Council. His leadership capabilities enabled him to help plan the first NIAA Animal Identification Conference as well as several other annual conferences.

Throughout his entire life, Fraley has believed in the importance in taking care of livestock and passing that belief on to the next generation.

“The most important crop a farmer can grow is their children,” Fraley said. A life lesson that Fraley has incorporated in to his daily life is one his mother taught him at a young age, that is that the care of the animals comes before yourself, meaning that chores were done before you sat down to eat your own meal.

His dedication to animal agriculture helped him earn the NIAA Meritorious Service Award in 2014. Each year, NIAA honors an individual who has made extensive contributions and/or has given exemplary service to the animal agriculture industry and to NIAA. Fraley did just that by devoting his career to bringing people and organizations together through his work with the Illinois Farm Bureau, Illinois Milk Producers Association and his extensive time as a leader within NIAA.

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