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Alternatives to chemical anthelmintics in organic farming

Inra Prod.Anim., 22 (3), 245-254


1 INRA, UMR1225, Interactions Hôtes-Agents Pathogènes, F-31076 Toulouse, France

2 Université de Toulouse, Interactions Hôtes-Agents Pathogènes, F-31076 Toulouse, France

3 ENVT, Interactions Hôtes-Agents Pathogènes, F-31076 Toulouse, France

4 INRA, UR1282 Infectiologie Animale et Santé Publique, F-37380 Nouzilly, France

5 Société Hippolab, rue du Thuy, F-63290 Limons, France

6 Lycée Agricole de Saint-Affrique, F-12000 Saint-Affrique, France

The objectives are the following with regards to the management of herd and flock health in the Organic farming system : i) to restrict the use of chemical drugs and in contrast ii) to favour the application of hygienic rules and iii) to stimulate the development of an effective host response against pathogens. These general principles also have to be applied to control parasitic infections. They are illustrated by application to the management of nematodes of the gastro intestinal tract in ruminants, these parasitic diseases being a major worldwide constraint in the breeding of ruminants. Control solutions are currently being explored or rediscovered. They aim at i) providing the agronomical bases to helminths control by a rational management of pastures ; ii) stimulating the host immune response through different means ; iii) evaluating the efficacy of new drugs (i.e. phytotherapy, aromatherapy, homeopathy and nutraceuticals) and iv) proposing a new concept of application of chemical anthelmintics. The perspectives are to provide to organic and conventional farmers, a « basket of options » to be adapted to the various situations, in order to achieve a more sustainable integrated approach of parasite control in ruminants.

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