FDA disbands vet medicine advisory group

FDA has disbanded the Veterinary Medicine Advisory Committee but will use other forums for expert input.

The Food & Drug Administration's Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) announced Nov. 22 the disbanding of its Veterinary Medicine Advisory Committee (VMAC), a group of outside experts retained as special government employees to offer opinion on animal drug and food issues. CVM said it will instead utilize other forums to seek expert and public opinion on regulatory matters.

In an update, CVM said it believes that VMAC is no longer necessary because of other opportunities for input; the last VMAC meeting was in 2010 and the committee has met only six times in the last decade.

CVM noted that it has held several other public meetings on specific regulatory issues in the same time period. For example, the center is currently taking part in an open public meeting on the proposed Preventive Controls for Animal Food rule under the Food Safety Modernization Act, and earlier in 2013 held five listening sessions around the country on the issue of antimicrobial resistance in animal agriculture. Additionally, CVM encourages public input through the Federal Register on proposed rules, draft guidance documents for industry and other calls for public comment.

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