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

In 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.”