The ICSA has insisted that new rules governing the sale of wormers must be guided by what is best for farmers.

The rules will require that farmers need to have a prescription from a vet in order to buy antiparasitics such as wormers from January next year and the ICSA feel that this will impact competition and the ability of farmers to buy products from licensed merchants and co-ops rather than vets.

“This process must be guided by what is best for the 100,000 plus farmers who will be most affected by these changes, and not by stakeholders with a particular vested interest one way or the other,” ICSA Animal Health & Welfare chair Hugh Farrell said.

“The fact that the issue has descended into a face-off between the department, the veterinary profession and the merchants – while ignoring the end users – is unacceptable.”

Farrell insisted that wormers and doses should be excluded from the requirement to have a veterinary prescription.

“These are products which have never required a prescription and introducing such a requirement is completely over the top. We see no reason why suitably qualified personnel should be precluded from advising farmers and dispensing such products as and when they are required.”