Orbeseal shortage - what to do
06 February 2012
It has been reported in the farming press that Orbeseal manufactured by Pfizer is in short supply this spring due to a batch failure of the product last December.
For the story please see this article on the Farmers Weekly website - http://www.fwi.co.uk/Articles/12/01/2012/130942/Orbeseal-shortage-creates-mastitis-concerns.htm
We are aware many organic producers use Orbeseal as a teat sealant during the dry period and therefore wanted to quickly make some advice available on what you can do if you are unable to source Orbeseal currently.
We got in contact with Peter Plate a vet from Damory Vets in Dorset who specialises in organic health management and put the question to him:
“The Orbeseal shortage is a big headache for organic farmers, especially for spring calving herds with poor housing.
Cleanliness, ventilation and getting moisture out of the buildings are key areas for preventing environmental infections during the dry period. Most people can't change buildings at short notice, but keep an eye on opening sheeted gates when the air is stale. Also cut back vegetation which may prevent air inlet in Yorkshire boading/space boarding, make sure there is enough outlet at the ridge too.
The most susceptible time to acquire infection is the period shortly after drying off and the last 2 weeks before calving. During the mid-dry period cows are usually immune. This should be taken into account, and especially the pre calvers should have plenty of space and good quality straw or (better) a sand yard.
Milk leakeage after drying off is a big risk factor in high yielders during the early dry period. Consider feeding just straw and water for a few days to get yields down before drying off.
External teat sealants may help, but need to be applied several times during the dry period. The best way forward is to go through the Dairy Co Mastitis Control Plan with your vet or advisor - it is a great tool to spot weaknesses and target improvements.”
Lastly if you are Producer Member please feel free to ring us for further information: 0117 914 2400
Producer Support Team