Weekly Overview: EC Issues New Antimicrobial Guidelines

ANALYSIS - The European Commission has published new guidelines aiming to prevent overuse and misuse of antibiotics by sharing best-practices in Member States.
calendar icon 21 September 2015
clock icon 3 minute read

These latest guidelines are one of the key deliverables in the EU action plan on antimicrobial resistance (AMR).

They provide, at a glance, Member States authorities, farmers and veterinarians with practical examples of what is being done in other EU countries to promote the prudent use of antimicrobials in veterinary medicine.

Since AMR bacteria can be transferred from animals to humans and vice-versa via direct and indirect contact, a "One Health" approach based on collaboration and joined-up thinking of both human and veterinary medicine sectors is essential to tackle this issue at EU and global level.

In the UK, the new Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn announced vegan MP Kerry McCarthy as the new Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

Ms McCarthy has been vocal on agricultural issues such as, the overuse of antimicrobials in agriculture and the problem of food waste.

Just last week she put forward a bill to reduce food waste which would introduce rules for supermarkets to donate unsold food to charities, similar to regulations discussed in Europe. The bill will receive a second reading in 2016 after receiving wide support.

However, comments on her website indicate that she believes meat consumption should decrease, saying in June 2015: "Agriculture is a huge contributor to global carbon emissions and as the global demand for food increases, heavy dependence on meat will become unsustainable."

In disease news, two outbreaks of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) have been reported in Cambodia.

The outbreaks affected two village pig farms in Chi Kraeng and Soutr Nikom, both of which are located in Siem Reap. In total, 997 pigs died due to the outbreak.

African Swine Fever (ASF) has been reported in more farmed pigs this week in Latvia, Russia and Zimbabwe. There was also a case of ASF in Estonian wild boar.

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