WEBINAR PREVIEW: Record Keeping & Drug Residue Prevention: An Industry Opportunity

November 8, 2016 | 12:00 pm EST | Watch Here

Increased public pressure around judicious use of medically important antimicrobials and the Veterinary Feed Directive guidelines present an industry opportunity to demonstrate the good work dairy farmers are doing to provide safe food from animals that are well cared for in a healthy environment. In this webinar, Norman Stewart, DVM, MS, manager of livestock technical services, Merck Animal Health, will guide you through adherence to important best practices including ensuring animals are permanently identified and permanent drug treatment records are maintained and easily accessible.


Norman Stewart, D.V.M., MS
Technical Services Manager
Crystal Lake, Illinois

Dr. Stewart has extensive experience in food animal production and clinical practice in domestic and international markets. He provides support in cow and calf health care and reproduction, while also supporting trials on antibiotics, reproductive technologies, biologicals and ectoparasiticides.

He has been instrumental in the development of Merck Animal Health’s Antibiotic and Drug Residue Prevention and Avoidance Awareness Program to increase residue awareness and provide solutions to help the dairy and calf ranch industries combat and prevent antibiotic and drug residues.

Prior to his career in industrial veterinary medicine, he was in a mixed animal practice in Ohio.


Why is the topic of drug residue prevention important to the dairy industry?
Producing wholesome dairy products for consumers to enjoy is a top priority for the dairy industry. Antibiotic and drug residue prevention efforts provide an important opportunity to increase awareness while providing solutions to help dairy farmers prevent residues.

How can proper record keeping make a difference within the greater dairy industry? Monitoring and maintaining an inventory of animal health products and how they are used on the farm is critical to avoiding drug residues in the food supply. Proper record keeping includes important animal health information including vaccination dates, parasite control measures, blood tests, surgical procedures and veterinary treatments, including condition diagnosed and medication used – dose, route of administration, timing and meat and/or milk withdrawal times. This helps ensure the safety of the food supply and maintains consumer confidence in the dairy industry overall.

Why should dairy producers care about drug residues?
It is every dairy farmer’s responsibility to maintain proper utilization of antibiotics and other animal health products on the farm in a manner that is best for the health and welfare of the animals, while delivering healthy food to America’s dinner tables.

Why is proper drug handling important for dairy operations to implement? 
Dairy farmers have a responsibility to themselves, their families, businesses, the industry, their cattle and all consumers to properly utilize antibiotics and animal health products in a judicious and responsible manner so as to maintain animal health while producing wholesome products for consumption.

What do you feel is the most important factor that leads to sound handling on dairy farms?  
Proper training, knowledge and implementation of sound practices by all segments of the dairy and allied industries, be it for handling of animals or the proper use of antibiotics and other animal health products.

What is the most common mistake dairy producers/employees make related to record keeping and drug residue prevention?  
I don’t think there is one, as dairy producers have protocols and procedures in place to prevent residues from entering the food chain in meat and milk. Residue avoidance and prevention is the responsibility of the entire dairy industry and its allied industry partners every day to ensure dairy products continue to be held in high esteem and increasingly consumed by the public.

How will FARM help industry stakeholders raise the bar for record keeping and drug residue prevention?
FARM, in conjunction with strategic alliances, partnerships and stakeholders in the dairy industry, provide the direction and tools necessary to increase awareness and enhance antibiotic and drug residue prevention efforts.

This webinar is part the of the Merck Dairy C.A.R.E & FARM Animal Care Webinar series. You can view the FAQs and full schedule here.

FARMER SPOTLIGHT: Rosy-Lane Holsteins

Pictured: Jordan Matthews, Tim Strobel, Lloyd Holterman and Daphne Holterman

“Let the cow be a cow,” says Lloyd Holterman. It’s a mantra that drives his operation, Rosy Lane Holsteins LLC, to raise healthier, happier and longer-living animals.

“All we do is focus on letting the cow fulfill her natural ability to make milk,” says wife Daphne. As members of the FARM Animal Care Program, Daphne and Lloyd, their family and partners work every day to make sure their 940 cows are treated with care and compassion. With 20 full-time staff, that requires constant collaboration and teamwork.

It all started in 1980, when Lloyd and Daphne began farming alongside of Lloyd’s parents. After six years of work and a two-year break, they returned to purchase the cows and equipment, finally buying the entire 226-acre farm in 1994. Today, they sell high-quality milk that is made into cheese, market genetics from their Holstein herd, and farm 1,700 acres of corn, alfalfa and other grasses.

Lloyd and Daphne are joined by partners Tim Strobel and Jordan Matthews. both worked on the farm as teenagers. Tim has been a partner for 17 years and Jordan for three.

When Lloyd and Daphne aren’t enjoying their free time on their Harley Davidson motorcycle, it’s all about the cows, and they joined the FARM Animal Care Program to instill that

belief in their staff.The farm conducts quarterly animal care meetings for both cow and calf staff, focusing on timely topics and watching videos on how to work “with” the animal, said Daphne. They also bring in veterinarians to help with training.“We hope positive peer pressure works to keep our staff’s animal handling skills honed,” she said. “The three partners who work with animals set an example on a regular basis.”

In addition to properly training the Rosy Lane staff, making sure the cows are comfortable is also vital. They make sure each cow has ample space to move around, and that they’re provided a calm environment from the very beginning of life so that they’re relaxed around people.

“We enjoy watching a calf grow up healthy and turn into a productive milking cow that lives a long time with few health issues,” said Daphne. “We enjoy the opportunity to work together and inspire others to learn about animals and how caring for them can be personally very rewarding.”

But challenges remain, Daphne says one of the toughest challenges is making sure the consumer understands her job and why she does it.

“Farming is an important part of our lives,” she said. “Our families go above and beyond every day to produce healthy food for our consumers.”