The anaesthetic spray Tri-Solfen was created by research and development company Animal Ethics in response to an animal welfare backlash against mulesing and tail-docking in the Australian sheep industry in the mid 2000s.
Tri-Solfen is sprayed onto an open wound and provides pain relief within one minute. It has been shown to deliver pain relief for up to 24-hours after application. It also stops bleeding and protects against infection.
Tri-Solfen has been registered for off-the-shelf use in Australia since 2012 and is now used by an estimated 70 percent of Australian sheep producers.
The spray also works on other livestock species and is currently being registered for off-the-shelf use in Australia and New Zealand for cattle, pigs, horses and dogs.
Approval for those industries is expected later this year.
Tri-Solfen is the only product of its kind in the world, according to Allan Giffard, managing director of Animal Ethics.
The product now appears destined for use in export markets.
In a strong demonstration of global interest in the product, Animal Ethics has been selected as one of just 12 companies worldwide – and the only one from Australia – to present at the European Animal Health Investment Forum in London on February 10-11.
The forum allows the hand-picked companies to showcase their animal health innovations to a wide range of potential investors and major pharmaceutical companies.
Animal Ethics will be presenting on Tri-Solfen at the event.
Bayer is the licensed distributor of Tri-Solfen for sheep and cattle in Australia, but distribution rights for other markets are still up for negotiation.
Mr Giffard said Animal Ethics has commenced the registration process for Tri-Solfen for use on pig, cattle, sheep and horses in North American and Europe, which is expected to be in place by 2018.
The Europe Animal Health Investment forum will provide a unique opportunity to showcase the product to a large number of potential investors and distributors for those markets, he said.
“You couldn’t ask for a better audience as far as the who’s who of animal health,” Mr Giffard said.
“All the major pharmaceutical companies and the major investment firms that focus on animal health with be in attendance.”
In addition to Tri-Solfen, Animal Ethics has a number of other new innovative animal health products in the development pipeline, Mr Giffard said. They remain confidential, but two will provide practical method of pain relief for sheep, cattle and goats when castration rings are applied.
Aus leadership in animal welfare
He said the global interest in Tri-Solfen was a strong endorsement of the lead role Australia’s livestock industry has taken in animal pain management.
“It cannot be underestimated what Australian producers have done in being proactive and taking the lead on animal welfare,” he said.
He said the company was aware of several major players in the cattle industry who “couldn’t wait” for Tri-Solfen to be registered for cattle, because it allowed them to address animal welfare concerns and at the same time market their product as humanely treated resulting in a positive outcome for their product and the industry.
Mr Giffard said Animal Ethics has also fielded interest from investors regarding the potential use of Tri-Solfen for human applications, such as for use by paramedics or the military as a first-line treatment on wounds to stop bleeding and to provide rapid pain relief and antiseptic.
Tri-Solfen currently costs Australian sheep producers around 40c-50c per lamb to apply.