European Antibiotic Awareness Day
European Antibiotic Awareness Day in November highlighted the need for more prudent use of antibiotics in both human and veterinary medicine. The latest information indicates that use of antibiotics in veterinary medicine is declining in many Member States. The FDA announced plans to phase out use of antibiotics for growth promotion purposes by the US livestock industry.
European Antibiotic Awareness Day is an annual event created by the European Centre for Disease Prevention & Control to promote initiatives supporting a more prudent approach towards the use of antibiotics in the treatment of both human and animal disease.
In the UK, RUMA (Responsible Use of Medicines in Agriculture) used the occasion to launch some new 'Pig Guidelines' for use of medicines by the pig industry. The latest report from the Veterinary Medicines Directorate suggested that sales of veterinary medicines in 2012 were in line with previous years.
The European Medicines Agency recently published the ESCVAC Report which suggested that overall sales of veterinary medicines in 20 EU countries declined by 10% in 2011, as reported by Pig Progress.
A report from Wageningen University suggested that usage of veterinary medicines in Holland continued to decline significantly and claimed that usage of antibiotics for pigs in Holland had fallen below that for Denmark.
However, the influential German publication, Der Spiegel, reported the Danish industry as “leading the way” in reducing use of antibiotics by the livestock industries.
Finally, the US FDA (Food and Drug Administration) announced plans to phase out the use of antibiotics for growth promotion purposes, in spite of strong opposition from the livestock industries. Denmark banned the use of antibiotic growth promoters in 2000 and the EU took similar action in 2006.