What is BETA NOPS?
Chances are you've seen this logo before. Whether that's on a corner of your feed bags or on the back of a supplement tub. You probably know it means that the product is BETA NOPS assured but what does that really mean for you and your horse? In partnership with NAF we've got the facts that you need about the BETA NOPS Assurance Scheme.
Quality equine supplements produced for today’s performance horses have to be manufactured and marketed in accordance with the Law, for them to be safe and legal for use in competition. NAF go the extra mile to ensure the legality of their products, and are extremely proud, not only of the standard of the products they produce, but also of the comprehensive, creative marketing behind the products, which must adhere to guidelines set out by a number of governing bodies. NAF are also extremely proud to be Official Suppliers of supplements to the British Equestrian Teams, which is a testament to their dedication to the quality and understanding the importance of FEI clean sport compliance.
More than ever, people are understanding the implications of understanding what they are feeding, as the subject of clean sport has recently come to the forefront of all equestrian disciplines.
As official supplier to the British equestrian teams and renowned for being the leading supplement manufacturer in the UK, NAF speaks to British Riding Clubs (BRC) to understand the impact clean sport has on their members. Many people [wrongly?] assume local and national competitions do not come under international FEI ruling. BRC has over 33,000 members and at least 1,500 compete at the national championships at Lincoln. Clean sport is at the heart of BRC’s ethos, as competition manager Rachael Holley explains: “British Riding Clubs believes that all horses should be competing on their own merit and as such, our rules on doping are the same as the FEI. BRC is also signed up to BEFAR (British Equestrian Federation Anti-Doping and Controlled Medication Rules).”
Clean sport: best practice for everyone - Clean sport does not just apply to medal winners and member of Team GBR - it is best practice for all horse owners. - "Testing does take place at BRC championships. We have results come back positive and bans from BRC events have been imposed" says head of BRC, Laura Sanger.
What is a prohibited substance? - A phrase that is used frequently and is a broad-, all-encompassing definition for any substance that can have a physiological effect on a horse. - A naturally occurring prohibited substance (NOPS) is one that is either naturally present within a particular ingredient, or one that occurs as a result of inadvertent cross-contamination during processing prior to the ingredients arriving at the manufacturing facility. - "NAF test every bath of product that goes through the manufacturing plant and exceeds the expectations of industry accreditation's for manufacturing, best practice and quality control" Dr Sara Matthews, NAF's quality and technical manager.
Where does the responsibility lie? It is ultimately the rider's responsibility to ensure the horse or pony they are riding has not been given any substance that will result in a breach of the rules. It is important to know if any supplements or medication that your horse is being given are included on the FEI equine prohibited substances list. This list is updated regularly and can be found here or as an app.
How do you know who you can trust? There is an understandable assumption that because a product is bought in a tack shop or feed merchant and can be purchased without a veterinary prescription, it is safe to compete on. This is incorrect and it is imperative to look for trusted brands if you are intending to compete at any level. There are some accreditations that can help you decide: - FBO - Registered Feed Business - The registration number must be quoted on the label. This ensure that the company will have the required levels of hygiene and traceability. - VMD - Veterinary Medicines Doctorate, FSA - Food Standards Agency, Trading Standards and ASA - Advertising Standards Authority - Feed, supplements and applications are under much scrutiny and monitored very closely by these agencies. Each product must have a batch number, best before date and must be in a sealed container. - UFAS - Universal Feed Assurance Scheme - NAF is also part of this scheme which means adhering to stringently high quality control standards in how products are manufactured. It also guarantees full traceability of all ingredients, right to the source. NAF is proud to have been one of the first companies to meet the strict requirements of the UFAS BETA NOPS code.
What should you do? - When feed has been purchased it should be stored in a safe, secure container, free from rodent infestation which could lead to contamination. - When mixing multiple feeds be aware of cross contamination when stirring. - Perhaps one of the most overlooked risks is the cup of coffee drunk or the bar of chocolate eaten in the feed room, as both caffeine and coca (theobromine) are prohibited substances.
Top riders put their trust in NAF - Sir Mark Todd - Eventing - Michael & Maria Eilberg - Dressage - Peter Charles - Showjumping - Robert & Claire Oliver - Showing - Neil Mulholland - Racing - Abbi Tennant - Endurance
Credit to NAF for 'Trust in NAF' article and image content.
If you have any further queries or would like to double check if your supplements, feed products and applications are safe to compete on get in touch via e-mail or on 01995 671787.