What's new ? - 2018

What's new ? - 2018

EU bans prophylactic use of antibiotics in farming

26 October, 2018

New legislation has been approved by the European Parliament to ban the prophylactic use of antibiotics in farming, which will come into force in 2022.
The overuse of antibiotics has become a growing concern as there is strong evidence to suggest that it has contributed to an increase in the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, which can spread to people. According to latest estimates, 73% of the world’s antibiotics are used in farming, and the EU’s position is now largely consistent with that of the World Health Organization, which last year produced guidelines on farm antibiotic use. The WHO called for an end to preventative group treatments and for severe restrictions on the use of certain antibiotics classified as high-priority critically important in human medicine. This new legislation is a huge step away from preventative group treatments of healthy animals towards a more responsible use of antibiotics in livestock farming. Preventative antibiotic treatments for individual animals will still be permitted in exceptional circumstances where the risk of disease is high. Group treatments will also be allowed if disease has been diagnosed in some of the animals and there is a high risk it will spread to others, and no alternative treatments are available.
The new EU legislation still needs to be formally approved by the Council of Ministers, but provisional approval by the Council was given earlier this year.