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How Factory Farming Harms People, Planet and Animals

How farm use is connected to antibiotic resistance in people.

Antibiotic should be used responsibly

The WHO could not be clearer

"Antibiotic resistance is one of the biggest threats to global health,  food security, and development today." and “Antibiotic resistance occurs naturally, but misuse of antibiotics in humans and animals is accelerating the process”.
🔗 Source: Antibiotic-resistance WHO

The link between antimicrobials in livestock and antimicrobials in humans

The link between use of antimicrobials in livestock and antimicrobial resistance in humans is well established. The Review on Antimicrobial Resistance (chaired by Jim O’Neill) in 2015 analysed 139 academic studies, and only 5% of those found no link, with 72% finding convincing evidence of a link

Experts are in agreement that antibiotics should be used ‘responsibly’

RUMA (Responsible Use of Medicines in Agriculture RUMA ) Alliance) with membership that includes organisations operating in agriculture, veterinary practice, animal medicines, farm assurance, training, retail and animal welfare says : “ There is also general agreement that antibiotics should be used responsibly in human and veterinary medicine, including not using antibiotics to treat viruses or as a substitute for good farm management practices, which reduce the risk of disease”

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🔗 Source: The preventive use of antibiotics in farm animals (prophylaxis)

Despite this responsible approach “Pigs can pass deadly superbugs to people”

Research into C difficile found antibiotic resistance is growing as a result of overuse on farm stock Robin McKie Science editor
…” Antibiotics are widely used to keep animals, most often pigs, in poor conditions where disease spreads easily Scientists have uncovered evidence that dangerous versions of superbugs can spread from pigs to humans The discovery underlines fears that intensive use of antibiotics on farms is leading to the spread of microbes resistant to them The discovery of the link has been made by Semeh Bejaoui and Dorte Frees of Copenhagen University and Soren Persson at Denmark’s Statens Serum Institute and focuses on the superbug Clostridioides difficile which is considered one of the world’s major antibiotic resistance threats “Our finding indicates that C difficile is a reservoir of antimicrobial resistance genes that can be exchanged between animals and humans,” said Bejaoui who is due to present her study at the European Congress of Clinical Microbiology Infectious Diseases in Lisbon ..“This alarming discovery suggests that resistance to antibiotics can spread more widely than previously thought, and confirms links in the resistance chain leading from farm animals to humans C difficile infects the human gut and is resistant to all but three antibiotics in use today Some strains contain genes that allow them to produce toxins that can trigger gut inflammation and life threatening diarrhoea in the elderly and in hospital patients The bacterium is considered one of the biggest antibiotic resistance threats in developed countries In the US, it caused an estimated 223 900 infections and 12 800 deaths in 2017 and cost the healthcare system more than 1 billion Doctors and scientists have stressed that the problem is being intensified by the widespread use of antibiotics on farms where they are given to animals most often pigs and poultry but sometimes also cattle in order to keep them in poor, basic conditions where disease spreads easily The result has been a rapid increase in antimicrobial resistance across the world Once effective antibiotics are now less able to fight common infections, a danger to global health that was summed up by Margaret Chan, former director general of the World Health Organization ..“Antimicrobial resistance is on the rise in Europe and elsewhere in the world,” she said ..“We are losing our first line antimicrobials Replacement treatments are more costly, more toxic, need much longer durations of treatment, and may require treatment in intensive care units
🔗 Source: Pigs can pass deadly superbugs to people, study reveals The Guardian April 2022 can pass deadly superbugs to people study reveals


How farm use is connected to antibiotic resistance in people (simplified)

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