In July 2023 Farmers Guide reported that delays in the supply of a vaccine for EAE (enzootic abortion of ewes) are expected to last for up to 3 weeks, causing uncertainty about famers’ chances at vaccinating their flocks in time. Ceva Animal Health, which manufactures the vaccine, has apologised and emphasised its commitment to resolve the issues.  


Ovine chlamydiosis, known as enzootic abortion of ewes (EAE), is caused by the bacterium Chlamydia abortus. Chlamydial abortion can occur in the last 2-3 weeks of pregnancy, with the appearance of stillborn lambs and inflamed placentas, or infection can result in the full-term delivery of stillborn lambs or lambs too weak to survive longer than 48 hours. Although infected ewes can also give birth to healthy lambs, this is less likely.  

It is reportedly difficult to identify predictive signs of an abortion, but behavioural changes or vulval discharge can sometimes be observed in the last 48 hours of pregnancy. Human infection may be acquired, resulting in manifestations that range from subclinical infection to acute influenza-life illness.  

Ceva Animal Health 

Ceva Animal Health manufactures the EAE vaccine and has stated that it understands the gravity of the situation. Roy Geary, regional director for Northern Europe, described the problem as “unforeseen manufacturing issues”, temporarily affecting the company’s ability to meet demands within the main season for vaccination.  

“The manufacturing of vaccines is a complex process that involves stringent quality control measures and adherence to regulatory guidelines. In collaboration with relevant stakeholders, we have implemented comprehensive contingency plans to optimise the manufacturing and distribution process.” 

Mr Geary emphasised that the “dedicated team” is working with partners to “restore normal supply levels as soon as possible”. In the meantime, he called on farmers to discuss additional protection measures with their vets. 

“We recommend implementing robust biosecurity measures and adhering to existing vaccination protocols for other preventable diseases to ensure the overall wellbeing of livestock.” 

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