In most industrialised countries such as the US and Western Europe, the bovine mastitis is still a relevant economical problem in dairy production, averaging $ 200 loss per cow per year in the US. The need to control mastitis is not only driven by the animal health and productivity concerns, but also by the consumer of milk and dairy products. Usually, the milk price is directly linked to somatic cell count (SCC) and bacterial count. Therefore the national average SCC is a strong indicator of the milk quality and productivity in a country. This average has been decreasing drastically during the last decade in Europe. The national average is less than 300000 SCC/ ml milk in most western European countries and about 350000 SCC in the US. It is obvious that manufacturing a medical Teat Dip is more costly in terms of GMP guidelines and raw material selection (according to European Pharmacopoeia). However this regulation allows reducing the risk for the user, the consumer and the animal and obliges to demonstrate the actual clinical efficacy of a teat dip.
Making the teat dip sold under the biocidal directive already improves the actual situation of free sale in many European countries, but does not assess the actual exposure of the animal, the user and the milk consumer neither the actual clinical efficacy on the cow. Therefore, the authorities should be careful that the claims made on labels and marketing material correspond to the registration category made by companies. At least until a European harmonisation placing these product as medicinal in all E.U. member states, allows to avoid false competition and improvement of the milk chain safety. Moreover, as teat dips are involved in milking process on a daily basis, production of teat dips should be strictly controlled in order to avoid accidents and to protect user/consumer and animal health. One should not forget that milk is the most consumed food product in Europe. www.cidlines.com