IMPORTANT: If you reside in a country where health product communications are restricted to health care professionals, and you are NOT a health care professional, please contact your veterinarian instead of reading the following information.
Customized Vaccination Programs
Tailoring a Plan to Each Business’s Context & Needs
Commercial poultry—whether shorter-lived broilers or longer-lived layers and breeders—need a variety of vaccines administered in a fairly short period of time to optimize their health and productivity. Developing a suitable vaccination program is a little bit art and a lot of science. It requires both avian veterinary expertise and a deep understanding of poultry business goals, plus the experience of combining products for different situations. There are a multitude of factors to consider, from specific pathogen threats, to local regulations, to basic business logistics like availability of labor and infrastructure.
That’s where Merial’s Veterinary Services group steps in. Working closely with customers’ own veterinary staff, these specialized avian veterinarians develop effective vaccination plans tailored to each business’s unique needs. Our process includes:
1. Investigating local epidemiological conditions and upcoming risks
2. Reviewing the business’s current and past disease challenges
3. Understanding specific goals for health, performance, and operational efficiency
4. Recommending a set of vaccines with an administration schedule
5. Monitoring program efficacy and adapting it as necessary to changing conditions
Establishing an Immune Foundation at the Hatchery
We believe a successful poultry vaccination program starts with establishing a strong immune foundation as early as possible. When the immune system is compromised, birds can’t protect themselves against many diseases; have poor immune response to administered vaccines; and subsequently experience poor growth and performance. Hatchery administration offers the earliest opportunity to lay this foundation.
So our Veterinary Services team designs many vaccination plans using our hatchery-administered, flagship product VAXXITEK® HVT + IBD as the starting point, because it aids in the prevention of two of the biggest immune threats in chickens: infectious bursal (Gumboro) disease (IBD)* and Marek’s disease,* and their consequences on the immune system.
The Benefits of Hatchery Vaccination
Hatchery vaccination is becoming an industry standard in many regions, with several vaccines being moved from field to hatchery application. In addition to allowing the earliest possible start to immune protection, it offers many benefits:
- A controlled environment with high biosecurity
- Greater precision with individual bird dosing
- Less labor required on the farm, and less stress on growing chickens
Our Veterinary Services group advises on the right combination of hatchery vaccines, and which are best saved for field administration. But we also recognize that not all Merial’s customers worldwide are able or ready to implement hatchery vaccination. So our programs always focus on optimizing immune and overall health within the realities of each business’s operations.
The Right Product Mix, Strategically Applied
Whether implementing an established protocol for certain diseases or addressing new challenges, there is no “one size fits all” vaccine—it’s important to have choices. In developing customized programs, Merial Veterinary Services has access to our diversified portfolio of vaccines** of unparalleled quality to meet a variety of needs. Sometimes classical vaccines (live and/or inactivated) are the best match; in other cases, new technologies like vector vaccines or our innovative NeO effervescent tablets** provide the right benefits.
We base our selections for each customer on rigorous scientific evidence about vaccine performance, compatibilities, modes and timing of administration, and suitability for operational segment (broiler, layer, breeder). Our teams are actively involved in ongoing research to compile data that helps customers make the most informed decisions for their businesses.
Interested in discussing a strategic approach for your operation? Talk to your Merial representative or contact us.
*Merial produces and markets several vaccines against many different poultry diseases. However, be aware that NOT all aspects of the diseases mentioned on this website are addressed by a vaccine. Always consult the product label for exact vaccine indications.
**Many of Merial’s avian vaccines are only marketed and available in certain countries, sometimes under different trade names. Speak to your Merial representative or contact us to find out what’s available in your region.
***A vaccine product sold under the VAXXITEK® HVT + IBD trade name is available in more than 75 countries worldwide.
Scientific Literature & Other Materials
Want to dig deeper? Browse published research on a range of poultry diseases and products, plus our equipment brochures, website articles, and more.
Product background info, vaccination equipment demos, and customer testimonials—explore all these and others from our video collection.