Antibiotic Sales Increase Slightly

UK - Reports of an increase in the sales of veterinary antimicrobial products in the UK in 2010 is reported, just a week after the EU has announced plans to cut the use of antibiotics.
calendar icon 25 November 2011
clock icon 3 minute read

The Veterinary Medicine Directorate (VMD) reports that there was a net 45 tonne increase in sales of veterinary antibiotics in 2010, compared to 2009.

Between 2006 to 2008 sales of antibiotics fell from 405 tonnes to 384 tonnes. Since 2008 sales of antibiotics have increased by 14 per cent.

The rise in use has been put down to increased productivity over the last two years. In fact the of antimicrobials used per tonne of food has risen only slightly.

During 2006, 2007 and 2008, approximately 0.06 kg of antibiotics were used for every tonne of animals slaughtered for food. There were small increases in 2009 of 0.006 kg and in 2010 of 0.004 kg, giving an average of 0.07.

As well as the European Commission launching an action plan detailing 12 concrete actions to reduce antimicrobial resistance, Compassion in World Farming, The Soil Association and Sustain called for the EU to cut the use of antibiotic by 50 per cent by 2015.

Following last week's announcement by the European Commission, the British Veterinary Association (BVA) expressed concerns that the Commission had given only qualified support for new antimicrobials for veterinary use.

Carl Padgett, President of the BVA, said: “The use of antimicrobials in the treatment and control of animal diseases is essential. Any option for managing antimicrobial resistance must be firmly rooted in sound scientific assessment of the risk.

“While the report recognises the difficulties that have led to the hampering of research into new antimicrobials for veterinary use, we are concerned that there is only qualified support from the Commission for the development of these new medicines for animal use.

"Any new regulations must not impede the ability of veterinary surgeons to prescribe and dispense medicines according to their clinical judgement.”

Further Reading

- You can view the full report from VMD by clicking here.

Further Reading

- Go to our previous news item on this story by clicking here.
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