Ban Veterinary Diclofenac Now! - Our Campaign
BirdLife International and the Vulture Conservation Foundation are advocating for a complete ban on the use of veterinary diclofenac in the EU. In parallel, BirdLife Partners are working nationally to inform local authorities and diclofenac distributors of the risk linked to the veterinary use of this dangerous drug.
Targeting the EU
BirdLife Europe has advocated actively towards the EU and Member States to start a referral procedure to revaluate the legal permits to sell and use veterinary diclofenac in Europe. Under the referral procedure, the European Commission requests the European Medicines Agency for a scientific opinion.
Following on the opening by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) of a public consultation to assess the risks of vultures in connection to the use of veterinary drugs containing diclofenac, BirdLife International, the International Fund for Animal Welfare and the Wildlife Conservation Society put together a reasoned opinion to EMA. Our report, written by some of the most experienced vulture experts in the world, gives a complete description of the risks diclofenac poses to our European Vulture populations and calls for an immediate ban of this drug.
We hope the consultation will be followed by a decision of the Commission to withdraw the drug from the market or discontinue commercialisation. We argue that the risk assessment legally required has failed to take into consideration the well-proven negative effects of veterinary diclofenac on biodiversity, and that the risks of a vulture and eagle collapse in Europe far outweigh the benefits, particularly when alternative drugs are available for the same treatments.
Veterinary diclofenac does not have a central marketing approval from the European Medicines Agency (EMA). It is authorised independently in each Member State. Despite legal requirements, environmental risks have not been properly considered, at least in Spain and Italy.
In both countries, BirdLife Partners SEO/Birdlife (Spain) and LIPU (Italy) are alerting cattle-owners and other actors in key vulture and eagle areas. They are also in close contact with veterinary associations and relevant authorities, asking them to ban diclofenac immediately.
To date, and despite some positive feedback, diclofenac can still be bought in both countries. We have also found evidence of this drug being sold illegally on the Internet in at least two other countries.
Targeting diclofenac distributors
In Spain, veterinary diclofenac is marketed under two brand names, Diclovet, and Dolofenac, both registered by FATRO Iberica SL. In Italy, veterinary diclofenac is marketed under the name Reuflogin by FATRO S.p.A.
We are asking FATRO to voluntarily withdraw the commercialisation of veterinary diclofenac. Cattle owners would be able to use other safe products such as meloxicam.
Stichting BirdLife Europe gratefully acknowledges financial support from the European Commission. All content and opinions expressed on these pages are solely those of Stichting BirdLife Europe.