The Danish VetStat database was established in 2000. It is owned and managed by the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration agency of the Ministry of Environment and Food of Denmark. VetStat was among the first data collection systems to become operational in retrieving detailed data on sales of prescribed drug for animals, hence product packages specific. Data comprises all animals, although the detailing level of production animals is considerably higher, with data at farm level, than the equivalent data for horses and pets

Data collection

Sub-categories of animal speciesof pigs: breeding animals (sows, boars, gilts and sucklers), weaners (< 30 kg) and finishers; of cattle: cows, bulls, heifers and steers > 24 months, calves < 12 months and youngster between 12 and 24 months; of sheep/goats: animals < or > 12 months; and of poultry: broilers, layers and breeding stock.
InputPharmacies and feed-mills are obliged to report sold amount of drugs for all animal species, while vets report the amount of drugs used for production animals in veterinary practice. Livestock owners do not provide data, however, they are obliged to register the specific usage of prescribed drugs and store these registrations for five years in the farm. For standardization of antimicrobial usage at farm level, the needed number of animals can be obtained from the Central Husbandry Register and represent average capacity numbers.


The dose-based unit of measurement ADD (animal daily dose; defined per product at the active substance level) is used to calculate the indicator ADD per 100 animals per day. Recently, weighted ADD values have been established, in order to discourage the use of certain types of antimicrobials and encourage the use of others. The kg animal at risk of treatment is determined using standard weights defined nationally. The use for companion animals is calculated based on the sales of veterinarian products from pharmacies to veterinarians.


Benchmarking is currently applied to pigs and cattle. One threshold value is defined per weight category, above which the average ADD/100 animals/day calculated over the last nine months (time frame) may not pass to prevent inhibitory measures becoming in force. This is for pigs referred to as the ‘yellow card initiative’. For cattle a similar system is in place. In contrast to pigs, no sanctions are currently in place for cattle, because the threshold values for this species are a guideline rather than a sanctioning tool. As the system is online available, farms can follow their position relative to the threshold at any time – hence, there is no defined frequency for the benchmarking.


VetStat has an interface for vets with graphs and data, as well as an internet based presentation to farmers. Vets can however apply own benchmarking programmes, the results of which however are secondary to those of the official methodology and results.