The Netherlands Veterinary Medicines Institute (SDa) was established in order to promote responsible use of veterinary prescription drugs in Dutch animal husbandries. The main priority in this respect is responsible antibiotic use, given the increasing global problem of antibiotic resistance.
Dutch livestock farmers and veterinarians are both taking steps to use antibiotics less frequently and only after careful consideration, and aim to reduce the usage of antibiotics to a level below that of 2009. Around that time sales figures of antibiotics for animals in the Netherlands was at its peak.
This objective was formulated by the four main Dutch livestock sectors (veal, cattle, pigs and poultry) and other stakeholders, and included in the policy document (only available in Dutch) of the Stuurgroep Antibioticaresistentie Dierhouderij, a steering group on antibiotic resistance in Dutch animal husbandries. This subsequently led to the establishment of the SDa in December 2010.
Besides the board and the office (in Utrecht) and an advisory board, formed by representatives of the stakeholder organisations, the SDa organisation includes a group of fully independent experts.