Breakout Track #2

Curbing antimicrobial use in food animal production and agricultural trade

The IACG recommendation on curbing the use of antimicrobials in food animal production fell short. And the OIE and FAO have failed to support the WHO Guidelines on Use of Medically Important Antimicrobials in Food-Producing Animals. The Codex has convened a Task Force on Antimicrobial Resistance, and its guidance shapes how the World Trade Organization will treat country restrictions on the use of antimicrobials in food animal production under the Sanitary and Phytosanitary regulations. According to the OECD’s commissioned projection, just five countries comprise over half of the use of antimicrobials trade in food animal products globally. Similarly, the exports from these countries to importing countries also is highly concentrated. In January 2018, ARC mounted a Thunderclap campaign, timed with an op-ed in the Bangkok Post with the IACG meeting there around the Prince Mahidol Awards Conference, resulting in 660,000 Tweets.

we face several key, near term challenges that may also provide an opportunity for advancing policy responses to the non-therapeutic use of antimicrobials in food production

  1. The emergence of mcr-1, plasmid-mediated resistance to colistin, one of the last-line antibiotics in human medicine, has heightened concerns over its continued use in food animal production. Until recently, it was the fifth most widely sold antimicrobial for veterinary use in Europe. OIE’s voluntary reporting system has identified a dozen countries still using colistin for growth promotion, but the agency believes it cannot release the identity of the countries involved without jeopardizing the voluntary reporting it receives from Member States.

  2. The spraying of antibiotics, such as streptomycin and oxytetracycline, to combat citrus greening in Florida orange groves also raises significant concerns.


  • Coilin Nunan

  • Michael Hansen

  • Rajeshwari Sinha

  • Jean-Yves Stenuick

  • Nikolai Pushkarev

  • Anja Lee

  • Philip Mathew

  • Josh Woo

  • Yoke Ling

  • Niyada Kiatying-Angsulee

  • Victor Chishimba