Afrivet Responds to Rising Prices of Ivermectin:
The very sudden demand increases for ivermectin injectable products based on beliefs that Ivermectin may help prevent and treat Covid-19, directly impacting the animal health industry.
With many inappropriate actions being taken regarding the selling of Ivermectin, we urge the public to please be responsible and make sure that their procurement source is legal. Like many others, we have seen the images of an automotive vehicle parts company now selling Ivermectin at hugely inflated prices. They do not have a direct account with us, and we did not and will not provide them with their stock.
The efficacy data available world-wide, while understandably not to the standards of the regulatory authority, indeed creates the impression that there may be some merit in utilising Ivermectin in the treatment of Covid- 19.
Ivermectin has been licensed in several forms in a number of countries for the treatment of various conditions including head lice, scabies mites and river blindness for almost three decades. It has been used in the treatment of these conditions in about 3,5 billion cases. There are thus obviously no safety concerns with the use of the ivermectin formulations licensed for human use.
Unfortunately, there are no registered or licensed ivermectin products suitable for humans use in South Africa. Desperate people, people who have seen the calls in the press and social media from many doctors and credible sources internationally for the product to be “legalised” for use in the prevention and treatment of Covid-19, do desperate things, resulting in the growing black market in the import and perhaps manufacture of Ivermectin products in the country.
Many have turned to the animal formulations. These formulations are different from those registered for human use. Their safety has never been tested in people. It is also illegal to recommend or use these in humans.
Afrivet did, however, see a spike in sales over the past 2 to 3 weeks. We suspected that this was linked to the demand from the general public. We immediately swung into action:
We released a press statement stating that it was illegal to use products registered for animal use in people. We also asked SAHPRA to please look at the data available and approve licensing the use of human ivermectin formulations to limit people’s motivation to use illegally imported human products and those registered for animal use. We made the same broad statement on various radio stations and continue actively with public education.
In cooperation with SAVA (South African Veterinary Association), we issued all co-operatives with posters advising that animal products are not to be used in or on people.
We put a similarly worded pamphlet in every parcel we send out from our warehouse. We have not increased the price of our Ivermectin containing product, Ecomectin.
We sell only to known veterinarians, co-operatives and wholesalers and legitimate farmers who have approved accounts with us. We do not sell to the general public.
Finally, we strongly disagree and do not support the behaviour of those who buy our products from one of the above (one can only assume) and mark them up 1000% in a malicious attempt to benefit from this unfortunate situation.
Afrivet will continue our efforts to combat the “black market” in Ivermectin containing animal health products. We will continue our focus on making these products available to the animal owners who need them to ensure no health matters in their livestock due to the animal formulations’ unavailability.