World Health Organisation representatives have drawn attention to the risks arising from the use of antibiotics for growth promotion and disease prevention in animals. This practice is already firmly established among livestock producers since it enables them to produce more meat. However, constant use of antibiotics in animals is extremely harmful for humans, since it may lead to dangerous infections with drug-resistant superbacteria.
In some countries, the livestock sector is responsible for about 80% of the total consumption of antibiotics. In most cases, antibiotics are administered to healthy animals to prevent disease and accelerate their growth. It is therefore essential to significantly reduce or even stop the use of medically important antibiotics in food-producing animals in order to ensure the highest standards of food safety.
What is the Commission’s position on a possible restriction on the use of antibiotics for growth promotion and disease prevention in healthy animals?