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Joint Communication on Antibiotic Reduction 2021

Please see below the summary of the Joint Communication on Antibiotic Reduction 2021.


  • 42% overall reduction in use of antibiotics in 2020 compared to 2019.
  • The sector has reduced antibiotic use by 70% in 2020 compared to 2016.
  • Whilst the use of HP-CIA’s (High Priority – Critically Important Antibiotics) has reduced, more needs to be done in order to further reduce their use and they should continue to only be used as a last resort. An example of a HP-CIA is Quinoflox or Baytril.

New Initiatives for 2021

  • Gamekeeper Training – A standardised curriculum designed by individual members of the BVPA game working group in conjunction with keeper and game farmers is due to be rolled out later this year. Delivered by vets, including those at St David’s,  the courses will cover the key areas of: breeding birds, hatcheries, rearing farms and shoots, with the aim to provide comprehensive information on each area of the game sector. For more information on the upcoming courses held by St David’s, keep an eye on our training page here. 
  • Mycoplasma Blood Testing – Game bird calibrated Mycoplasma blood test is now universally available and with wide uptake will help to reduce the disease across the sector and improve the overall health and welfare of the national flock.
  • Pen Scoring – Game bird vets and industry professionals are launching a new Pen Scoring Matrix in 2021, with the aim of being able to better assess the environment, health and welfare of the birds in rear. The aim of the Pen Scoring initiative is to identify any changes that can be made to the environment that the birds are being released into, to better improve the overall health and welfare of the birds as well as to reduce the risk of disease.