The food industry must stop dosing healthy livestock with antibiotics, the World Health Organization said Tuesday. For decades animals’ food and drinking water have often been spiked with medications aimed at boosting growth and preventing disease. But that practice can provide the necessary spark for antibiotic resistance that endangers human health, the agency warned.
ARAC in the News
The World Health Organization (WHO) is now recommending against the routine use of antibiotics in food animals, according to new guidelines released by the international public health agency.
WHO has launched new guidelines on use of medically important antimicrobials in food-producing animals, recommending that farmers and the food industry stop using antibiotics routinely to promote growth and prevent disease in healthy animals. These guidelines aim to help preserve the effectiveness of antibiotics that are important for human medicine by reducing their use in animals.
USDA and FDA have a duty to make sure that livestock producers aren't causing antibiotic resistance, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue told researchers, scientists and government employees today.
The agencies have a "huge responsibility" to "convince and educate our producers" on using antibiotics judiciously, he said during a meeting of the National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System, or NARMS.
The 2015 NARMS Integrated Report is an annual report that highlights antimicrobial resistance patterns in bacteria isolated from humans (by CDC), raw retail meats (by FDA), and animals at slaughter (by USDA).