Veterinary Feed Directive

On Jan. 1, 2017, new federal regulations known as the Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) will take effect. The VFD is a rule of the Food and Drug Administration and is part of that agency’s direction to encourage more judicious oversight and control of the use of antimicrobial drugs in animal feed that is given to food-producing animals.

The VFD applies only to food-producing animal species and to antimicrobial drugs administered in feed. Antimicrobial drug products that are injectables or given orally (other than in feed) may require a prescription but do not require a VFD order.

A VFD can only be issued by a veterinarian licensed in the state in which the animals in question are located and to a producer with whom there is a valid veterinary-client-patient relationship (VCPR). The VFD must follow a prescribed format and is issued in triplicate, with one copy provided to the feed mill, one to the producer and one kept by the issuing veterinarian.

Veterinary Feed Directive Compliance Workshop: Program Materials

VFD Resources


Medicated Feed

Drug Transitioning




VFD Education

VFD Survival Strategy Webinar Series (hosted by GlobalVetLINK)


  • Module 29: Veterinary Feed Directive – Upon completion of this module, you will be able to describe the need for antibiotic stewardship in regard to antibiotic resistance; understand the FDA's regulatory oversight of animal drugs; describe the Federally-defined key elements of a lawful veterinarian-client-patient relationship; recognize the classes and uses of antibiotics requiring a VFD; describe the components of a complete VFD; understand the recordkeeping requirements associated with a VFD; apply expiration date and duration of use guidelines to a VFD; and locate additional resources related to VFDs.