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Establishing the appropriate treatment method and an MRL for oxytetracycline for honey - HH0816SHB

There is no MRL currently set for oxytetracycline (OTC) in honey which means that there is a zero tolerance limit after treatment. All statutory treatments with OTC for European foulbrood in England and Wales are undertaken by appointed Bee Inspectors as part of the Bee Heath Programme. Work undertaken in 1995 by the national Bee Unit (NBU) showed that residues of OTC were detectable in honey at the end of an 8 week statutory withdrawal period and that residues were dependent on the application method. these data have been further supported by work undertaken in Australia. There is an increased programme of screening of honey for antibiotic residues required under European legislation and administered by VMD. There is therefore justific=able concern that current methods of authorised treatment of colonies, by MAFF and NAW appointed bee inspectors, may result in detectable residues of OTC in honey sold by beekeepers. The suitability of the treatment method will be determined on the basis of both the residue level in extracted honey and the effect on honeybee brood mortality in the treated colonies. there are only limited data available on the toxicity of OTC to honeybee brood under UK conditions.

1. Comparison of the effects of oxytetracycline applied in solution and as a powder on adult honeybees and brood
2. Comparison of the residues of oxytetracycline in honey up to 12 weeks after treatment applied in solution and as a powder
Project Documents
• Final Report : Establishing the appropriate treatment method and an MRL for oxytetracycline for honey   (195k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2001

To: 2002

Cost: £21,142
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Central Science Laboratory
Bee Health              
Disease Control              
European Foulbrood              
Organic Farming              
Fields of Study