Bee medicines and pharmaceutical waste

The Dos and Don’ts of Using Medicinal Products to Control Diseases of Bees

John Mackinnon BVetMed CertPM FRCVS

Medicinal products for bees

Under the Veterinary Medicines Regulations 2013 (SI 2033), a veterinary medicinal product is defined as any substance or combination of substances presented as having properties for treating or preventing disease in animals. The word “animal” means all animals other than man, including birds, reptiles, fish, molluscs, crustaceans and bees. Because bees are classed as food-producing, anything which is used in a beehive to control or eradicate pests or diseases is classed as a medicine and must therefore be registered under the Veterinary Medicines Regulations 2013. This means that homemade remedies or substances that have not been approved in Europe and the UK must not be used. Medicines currently approved for bees in the UK as of 31st August 2018 are shown in the Table below:

Trade Name

Licence Holder

Product Licence No.

Active ingredient

Distributor

API-Bioxal, 886 mg/g powder for in-hive use

Chemicals Laif S.P.A

23101/4001

Oxalic Acid

Chemicals Laif S.P.A

Apiguard Gel (25% Thymol) for Beehive Use

Vita (Europe) Ltd

17017/4002

Thymol

Vita (Europe) Limited

Apilife Var Beehive Strip for Honey Bees

Chemicals Laif S.P.A

23101/4000

Camphor Racemic, Eucalyptus Oil, Menthol   Levo, Thymol

Chemicals Laif S.P.A

 Apistan 10.3% w/w Beehive Strip

Vita (Europe) Ltd

17017/4000

Tau Fluvalinate

Vita (Europe) Limited

Apitraz 500 mg Beehive Strips for Honey Bees

Laboratorios Calier, SA

20634/4009

Amitraz

Laboratorios Calier, SA

Apivar 500 mg Beehive Strips for Honey Bees

Veto Pharma

48004/4000

Amitraz

Veto Pharma

Bayvarol 3.6 mg Beehive Strips for Honey Bees

Bayer plc

00010/4090

Flumethrin

 Bayer plc

Dany’s BienenWohlPowder and Solution for 39.4 mg/ml Beehive Dispersion for Honey Bees

DANY Bienenwohl GmbH

EU/2/18/225/001- 002

Oxalic acid dihydrate

 

MAQS Formic Acid 68.2g Beehive Strips for Honey Bees

NOD Europe Ltd

40476/4000

  Formic Acid

 BCW (Agriculture) Limited

 Bee- Equipment Ltd

Oxuvar 5.7%, 41.0 mg/ml Concentrate for Solution for Honey Bees

Andermatt BioVet GmbH

36234/4001

  Oxalic Acid

 Andermatt BioVet GmbH

Oxybee Powder and Solution for 39.4 mg/ml Beehive Dispersion for Honey Bees

DANY Bienenwohl GmbH

EU/2/17/216/001- 002

  Oxalic acid dihydrate

 

PolyVar Yellow 275 mg Beehive Strip

Bayer plc

00010/4216

  Flumethrin

 Bayer plc

Thymovar 15 g Beehive Strips for Honey Bees

Andermatt BioVet GmbH

36234/4000

 Thymol

 Agri Nova Technology

 Andermatt BioVet GmbH

VarroMed 5 mg/ml + 44 mg/ml Beehive Dispersion for Honey Bees

BeeVital GmbH

EU/2/16/203/001

 Formic Acid, Oxalic acid dihydrate

 

VarroMed 75 mg + 660 mg Beehive Dispersion for Honey Bees

BeeVital GmbH

EU/2/16/203/002

  Formic Acid, Oxalic acid dihydrate

 

 

These medicines are classed as “over-the-counter” medicines and therefore do not have any legal requirements for supply or use, such as a veterinary prescription. However, a responsible approach is still expected.

Keeping records

When using bee treatments, the Regulations require that:

1. The product has a marketing authorisation for its administration in the United Kingdom, and the administration is in accordance with that marketing authorisation.

2. Beekeepers must keep proof of purchase of all veterinary medicinal products acquired for the treatment of bees under their care (or, if they were not bought, documentary evidence of how they were acquired).

3. Beekeepers must keep the following records:

3.1 When acquiring the products:

(a) Name of the product and the batch number; (b) Date of acquisition; (c) Quantity acquired; and (d) Name and address of the supplier.

3.2 When administering the products:

(a) Name of the product; (b) Date of administration; (c) Quantity administered; (d) The withdrawal period; and (e) Identification of the bees treated.

3.3 When disposing of any or all of the products other than by treating bees:

(a) Date of disposal; (b) Quantity of product involved; and (c) How and where it was disposed of.

Records or documentation must be kept of the acquisition of veterinary medicinal products and their administration or disposal for at least the following five years, irrespective of whether or not the bees concerned are no longer in that keeper’spossession or have died during that period.

Waste medicines and medicine containers – pharmaceutical waste

Pharmaceutical waste refers to products such as unwanted, expired, damaged or contaminated medicinal products, waste substances that contain medicinal products, receptacles used as medicinal product containers, contaminated garments and instruments (gloves, tubes, bottles, plastic syringes, etc.). Outer paper wrapping or cardboard boxes are not classed as pharmaceutical waste unless they have been contaminated by a medicinal product.

L&DBKA now operates a service for members allowing them to dispose of their pharmaceutical waste correctly. Disposal can be carried out at the apiary at the normal opening times. More details to follow in due course.

For more information, please visit:

www.gov.uk/guidance/bee-medicines-availability-in-the-uk

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