8 Sep 2019
With the global drive to stop routine antimicrobial use in livestock and reduce use of antimicrobials overall, we take a look at some alternative ways we can ensure this happens on our pig farms.
The cost-benefit ratio for the routine use of antimicrobials is relatively good for productivity and short-term animal health, but the key phrase here is “short-term”. Long-term, routine use of antimicrobials in livestock has serious implications for the promotion of antimicrobial resistance and essentially reverses the cost-benefit ratio, drastically reducing the number of efficacious antimicrobials in the meantime.
The use of antimicrobials on a case-by-case basis, where an animal is sick and needs antibiotic treatment, is not being discouraged here – it is important to treat sick animals appropriately – but researching and applying holistic practices that follow a One Health approach will be critical to the sustainability of the pig industry.