Vets welcome government report on antibiotic use

27 October 2017

Evidence-based sector-specific targets are vital to further reduce antibiotic use in the livestock sector

response to a Veterinary Medicines Directorate report released today, showing sales of
antibiotics for use in food-producing animals have dropped by 27%, the British Veterinary Association Senior Vice
President (SVP) Gudrun Ravetz commented:

“The VARSS data marks
a major milestone in the concerted efforts of vets, government and the industry
to tackle the global threat of antimicrobial resistance with the target set
following the O'Neill Review achieved two years ahead of schedule."

Following recommendations from the O'Neill
Review on Antimicrobial Resistance, the UK government set a usage target of 50 mg/kg.

The BVA SVP continued: “It is extremely
encouraging to see reductions in antibiotic use, including Critically Important
Antibiotics, across all livestock industries for which data was made available
this year.

“It is
vital that we continue to build upon these achievements through evidence-based,
sector-specific targets to further refine, reduce or replace antibiotic use in
the livestock sector. Continued collaboration between the health sectors,
underpinned by a commitment from each of us within the veterinary profession to
maintain the highest standards of stewardship in using antibiotics, most
especially Critically Important Antibiotics, is the only way we can preserve
these essential medicines for future generations.”