Prospects sound for horse gel

APRIL 2010

NATURAL product developer BioProspect has moved one step closer to the production of its horse ulcer treatment paste Giguard, after the successful completion of two major safety studies.

CEO David May, says the trials that took place in Sydney cost $300,000, but he expects approval from the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) in the next nine months.

Once approved he plans to penetrate the Australian market worth between $2 million and $3 million, which could double if another conifer-based topical gel under development is also approved.

“We are getting Giguard through registration as a natural veterinary health product with a general claim of gastro-intestinal well-being,” he says.

“Part of the strategy of registering with the ATVMA is that you get a free sales certificate, so once registered in Australia we can go to countries like the United Arab Emirates (UAE) where it’s a prerequisite to hold a certificate from the country of origin.

“This opens potential for an export strategy, as we want to sell our product on a global scale.”

The trials started last year, covering a five month period with more than 30 horses, following a smaller case study in Sharjah, UAE in 2008.

Giguard is made from conifer by-products from the Russian forestry industry and is used to treat equine gastric ulcer syndrome (EGUS).

May says eight horses died during the trials, but they were control horses who did not use the product and died of natural causes.

“For instance, one died from a snake bite and another ran into a fence and we had to put it down, but that didn’t affect the trial – they were destined for the knackery anyway,” he says.

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