The British Equestrian Trade Association feed assurance scheme set up in 2016 to help owners identify feeds suitable for horses and ponies prone to equine gastric ulcer syndrome (EGUS) continues to grow and now has 16 products on its books.
Spillers’ Ulca Fibre and Ulca Power Cubes are the very latest to have passed the scheme’s stringent, three-stage application process, which includes the examination of ingredients, labelling, marketing claims and independent laboratory analysis.
Both feeds are now entitled to feature the distinctive feed approval mark – a red BETA logo with the wording “suitable for equines prone to gastric ulcers as part of a balanced diet” – on their packaging.
The BETA feed approval mark was developed by the trade association in consultation with the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD). It was introduced following the move by regulatory organisations to allow the term “prone to” only when referring to laminitis – excluding other equine conditions such as gastric ulcers, where feeding also plays a key role in its management.
All feeds submitted for approval must fall into one of two categories: A – a compound complementary feed that provides a balanced diet when fed at a rate stated by the manufacturer; B – feedstuff typically advised to help manage horses prone to EGUS, including chopped or high-fibre feeds and sugar beet, or alternative energy sources to cereals such as high-oil concentrates. Nutritional supplements are excluded from the scheme.
BETA executive director Claire Williams said: “We are extremely pleased that companies continue to recognise the tremendous opportunities that the approval scheme offers them – and delighted to welcome more Spillers products,” added BETA executive director Claire Williams.
“This feed approval mark is really helping riders with the management and welfare of their horses, and providing greater confidence when selecting feed products.”