Infectious Diseases 2018

Infectious Diseases 2018

DANMAP: Antimicrobial use in animals has decreased four years in a row

4 October, 2018

The use of antimicrobials in animals in Denmark fell in 2017. This is one of the findings of the annual DANMAP report for 2017. In 2017, the total antimicrobial consumption (in kilos) in Danish animals was approximately 3% (3.4 tonnes) lower than in 2016, which is in line with the trend seen in the previous three years. Overall, the veterinary antimicrobial use has decreased approximately 14% from 2013 to 2017, which is equivalent to a reduction of more than 16 tonnes of antimicrobials. This is one of the findings of the annual DANMAP report for 2017 from Statens Serum Institut – the Danish national institute of public health – as well as the National Veterinary Institute and the National Food Institute at the Technical University of Denmark.
In poultry, there was a decrease from 1,560 kg in 2016 to 1,488 kg in 2017. In 2017, the antimicrobial use for pigs, cattle, fur animals and poultry comprised approximately 74%, and 12%, 6%and 1% of the total antimicrobial consumption for animals, respectively.
In Denmark, poultry production comprises mainly broiler production, followed by egg layers and turkey production. In addition, there is a small production of ducks, geese, and game birds. Danish broiler farms have a very high level of biosecurity and the antimicrobial consumption in broiler production is generally low compared with other species. Accordingly, a few disease outbreaks in some farms can markedly affect and cause considerable fluctuations in the national statistics on antimicrobial usage. This was the case in late 2014 and throughout 2015. In 2016, use of antimicrobials for poultry (excl. turkeys) decreased sharply again and in 2017 the usage was further reduced to 848 kg. For broilers, amoxicillin has been the most commonly used antimicrobial agent for more than a decade, but in both 2016 and 2017 tetracycline was the most commonly used antimicrobial. Cephalosporines have not been used in the poultry industry for more than a decade. In 2017, the antimicrobial use was approximately at the same level as in 2016), almost half (45%) of which was tetracyclines.