Revisiting the Economic Impacts of Eimeria and Its Control in European Intensive Broiler Systems With a Recursive Modeling Approach

Gilbert, W and Bellet, C and Blake, D P and Tomley, F M. and Rushton, J (2020) Revisiting the Economic Impacts of Eimeria and Its Control in European Intensive Broiler Systems With a Recursive Modeling Approach. Frontiers in Veterinary Science, 7. ISSN 2297-1769

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.3389/fvets.2020.558182

Abstract

Ionophore compounds active against Eimeria species are widely used in intensive broiler systems and have formed the backbone of coccidiosis control for almost 50 years. Producers, however, are under pressure to reduce ionophore use due to consumer concerns over antimicrobial usage in food animals, and antimicrobial resistance. Moreover, current vaccines against Eimeria are commonly considered to be less cost-effective in intensive broiler systems, especially in Europe where attenuated live vaccines are used. An economic assessment of the impact of Eimeria and the disease coccidiosis, including the cost implications of different efficacies of control, is therefore timely to provide evidence for industry and policy development. A mechanistic model of broiler production under varying infection and control states was used to construct a dataset from which system productivity can be measured. Coccidiosis impact increased rapidly as control efficacy decreased. In the total absence of control, median impact was found to maximize at between €2.55 and €2.97 in lost production per meter squared of broiler house over a 33 day growing period. Coccidiosis remains a major risk to intensive broiler systems and the model developed allows investigation of issues related to coccidiosis control, antimicrobial use and the development of antimicrobial resistance.

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