Once the veterinary feed directive (VFD) guidance goes into effect January 1, 2017, producers wanting to utilize antibiotics in feed or water will be required to obtain a prescription from their veterinarian before purchase. Kansas State University veterinarian David Rethorst told the 120 farmers and ranchers in attendance at the August 27 KLA/K-State Ranch Management Field Day near Penokee that no “extra label” use will be permitted. According to the guidance, if a VFD feed is fed at a level or duration of time different from label specifications, a fine could be assessed. He said after the effective date, producers will be required to maintain records on any VFD feeds fed, no matter when it was purchased.
     “The uncertainty of how far the government is going to take this means, as an industry, we have to do a better job of preventing disease with less reliance on antibiotics,” said Rethorst.
     Also on the field day program was a panel discussing cattle handling facility needs for artificial insemination (AI). Panelist Terry Hobbs, owner of Hobbs Ranch and host of the event, utilizes AI extensively in his commercial cow-calf operation. He said advancement in technology and facility design has made the process more efficient. For example, an AI box is used on Hobbs ranch during breeding season. Local AI technician Chris Riedel, also a panelist, owns and provides the portable facility, which is equipped with two side-by-side stalls and a desk area. The box is totally enclosed on both sides and requires no head gate or squeeze chute. He said this makes breeding less stressful on the animal and the handler.
     The Penokee field day was sponsored by Bayer HealthCare - Animal Health Division and the Farm Credit Associations of Kansas.


NCBA is aggressively working to nullify the Waters of the U.S. Rule. KLA Communications Program Manager Scarlett Hagins says this was a main topic of discussion during the August 20 KLA/K-State Ranch Management Field Day.