Three cypermethrin sheep dip products accused of polluting rivers and killing aquatic invertebrates will not be returning to the market, manufacturers have confirmed.

Three cypermethrin sheep dip products accused of polluting rivers and killing aquatic invertebrates will not be returning to the market, manufacturers have confirmed.

The Government temporarily suspended the marketing authorisations for the three products in February 2006 following reports of serious pollution incidents arising from the routine use of cypermethrin.

SheepHowever, the manufacturers of all three sheep dips have now voluntarily withdrawn their marketing authorisations, claiming they no longer want to sell the products.

Until suspended, cypermethrin sheep dips were commonly used to treat a number of serious ectoparasites of sheep, including sheep scab. They were also effective against blow fly strike, lice and ticks. However, numerous reports claimed the products were polluting rivers during (and following) routine sheep dipping operations. The 2006 suspension stopped further pollution and allowed time to consider whether measures could be put in place to permit their safe use.

VMD chief executive Steve Dean said: “Although sheep farmers from across the United Kingdom valued the cypermethrin dip products, since the products were suspended 4 years ago the VMD has not received any accounts of the alternative authorised products failing to control sheep scab.
 
“As the routine use of the cypermethrin dips has proved too challenging for environmental safety I welcome this voluntary move by the manufacturers.”

Remaining authorised veterinary medicinal products for the treatment of sheep ectoparasites include:

  • 3 organophosphate dip products for the treatment of sheep scab, blowfly, ticks, keds and lice;
  • 12 injectable products for the treatment of sheep scab and nasal bot flies; and
  • 4 pour-ons for flies, lice and ticks and two pour-ons for blowflies.
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