A Defra report released shows sales of antibiotics for use in food-producing animals dropped by 27%, from 62 mg/kg in 2014 to 45mg/kg in 2016, surpassing a government target of 50 mg/kg set following recommendations in the 2016 O’Neill Review on Antimicrobial Resistance.
Antibiotic resistance is a major threat to modern medicine with estimates suggesting it could be responsible for ten million deaths per year by 2050 and cost the global economy $100 trillion.
In 2013 the UK government launched a strategy to reduce the development and spread of antibiotic resistance in animals and humans. As part of the strategy the government has provided expert advice to the farming industry and veterinary profession, encouraging more responsible use of antibiotics to safeguard them for the future.
Sales of all the highest-priority antibiotics - considered critically important for human health - have also dropped, accounting for less than 1% of all antibiotics sold for use in animals in 2016. This includes an 83% reduction in sales of Colistin,
an antibiotic of last resort for use in people. Colistin use is now at from an already very low level of use, 0.02mg/kg, putting it considerably below the European Medicines Agency’s target of 1mg/kg.
Friday October 27, 2017/ DEFRA/ United Kingdom.