What is the Sheep Health and Welfare Group?

The Sheep Health and Welfare Group (SHAWG) is an independent body with membership that reflects the range of organisations involved in the sheep industry.  It acts as an extremely useful link between representatives of the sheep industry with Government departments and their agencies.

SHAWG was established in 2009 and has financial support from AHDB Beef & Lamb. One of the main projects in 2017 is communication to help reduce antibiotic use on sheep through best practice advice.

The second edition of the Sheep Health and Welfare Report 2018/19 is now available. Download your copy here.

SHAWG’s main objectives are:

  1. To reduce the impact of endemic disease by acting on surveillance data and new knowledge
  2. To ensure the industry is aware of the threat of any new or re-emerging diseases
  3. To promote and encourage responsible use of medicines, including anthelmintics and antimicrobials
  4. To ensure welfare is maintained as a priority for the sheep industry
  5. To highlight the role of nutrition in good health and welfare
  6. To deliver an integrated approach with all stakeholders, allied support industries, retailers and Government

SHAWG is also responsible for the organisation and running of the  Sheep Health and Welfare Conference

The makeup of SHAWG supplies an immensely valuable resource for the sector, providing a wide ranging and deep knowledge of sheep health and welfare, and collaborating on behalf of the sheep farming industry for the benefit of flock health and welfare. Find out who our members are.

SHAWG has established a set of Terms of Reference to ensure that the work we do remains targeted and does not duplicate work that others in the sector are already undertaking.


Farmer Representatives

Congratulations to Crosby Cleland, our Northern Ireland Farmer Representative, who was elected as SHAWG Vice Chair on 27 February 2019. Crosby will support Charles Sercombe (SHAWG Chair) in ensuring discussions and activities of SHAWG are represented at relevant industry meetings and are fed back to the group. Crosby has and currently represents sheep farmers in Northern Ireland on a wide range of committees, actively seeking to improve the health and welfare of the sheep industry. As Vice Chair of SHAWG he will continue to influence the sector through the vision and objectives of SHAWG.

SHAWG Vice Chair, Crosby Cleland (left) and SHAWG Chair, Charles Sercombe (right)