§ Sir David Steel
To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what assessment has been made of the impact of the withdrawal of calcium, magnesium, phosphate and dextrose on the welfare of livestock; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Soames
A number of medicinal products containing calcium in combination with these other substances are currently being examined by the Veterinary Products Committee as part of a review of pharmaceutical products licensed before 1 January 1984, to ensure that they meet modern day standards of safety, quality and efficacy. It is for the individual pharmaceutical companies622W involved to make a commercial decision whether or not to provide the data to support their products through the review process. If such data demonstrates that the necessary scientific criteria have been met, then a licence may be granted.
Such calcium combination products continue to be available, but the Veterinary Medicines Directorate maintains regular contact with the British Veterinary Association and the National Office of Animal Health, to ensure that it receives an early warning where a loss of products in any group might lead to a problem with animal welfare.