Phase I of the Action Johne’s Initiative, which ran from 1st April 2015 to 31st December 2017, primarily focused on education and engagement.
Milk purchasers accounting for nearly 78% of UK milk production became members of the plan in phase I. Members committing to the plan agreed to commit their supplying dairy farmers to deliver the requirements of the plan.
Approximately 50% of GB dairy herds engaged in some form of surveillance. NML reported that it undertook some level of Johne’s testing for 3,500 dairy farms, ranging from ad hoc 30 cow screens through to full whole herd quarterly screening. It is estimated that a further 1,500 to 2,000 farms tested for Johne’s through other laboratories.
Additionally Phase I also involved:
i. Employment of a delivery team
A consortium of RAFT Solutions, SAC Consulting (a division of SRUC) and XLVets was appointed to deliver this role. Half of the cost of the Delivery Team was funded by the scheme members. This was matched by a contribution from AHDB Dairy. The Delivery Team primarily focused on recruiting members and in the creation and dissemination of information to the industry.
ii. Training for the veterinary profession
This was provided by the BCVA through the development of a web-based training package. To date over 1,000 vets have completed the training programme. These numbers are expected to increase further.
iii. The development of a technical manual
This was completed and disseminated to vets that had undertaken the BCVA training course.