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VETS should engage more effectively with the business of farming for food and, working with the food and farming industries, explore opportunities for a food supply development path for veterinary graduates.
These are among recommendations made by the Veterinary Development Council (VDC) in a report published last week, with a view to guiding the long-term development of food-animal veterinary services.
The VDC was established in January 2011 following a recommendation in the 2009 Lowe report, ‘Unlocking potential – a report on veterinary expertise in food production’ (VR, August 15, 2009, vol 165, pp 185, 186–188). Chaired by Richard Bennett, professor of agricultural economics at the University of Reading, it brought together representatives from across the food chain to:
■ Assess the market for veterinary services in the food supply chain now and in the foreseeable future, in particular, to determine the animal health, animal welfare and public health role of the veterinary profession in the food chain;
■ Consider how this market might best be serviced and organised so as to maximise benefits to veterinarians, users of their services and society in general;
■ Make recommendations regarding actions that need to be taken to ensure a sustainable, effective and efficient market for veterinary services in the food supply chain over time.
Its 50-page report (including 25 pages of annexes) explains how working groups were established to look at three specific areas: the veterinary-led team and the role of …
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