“ANTIBIOTICS, WILL WE RESIST THE RESISTANCES?” WEBINAR
Which is the current situation in Spain?
The Spanish pig sector still leads the fight for the avoidance of the indiscriminate use of antibiotics in livestock.
The National Plan Against Antibiotic Resistances (Plan Nacional Frente A La Resistencia A Los Antibióticos [PRAN]) has implemented a series of programs for the voluntary reduction in the consumption of certain antibiotics in different animal species, and in 2016 it launched the Reduce Colistin Program (Programa Reduce Colistina) in pigs, an agreement signed by the representatives of the national veterinarians’ associations and the pig production professionals’ sector for the voluntary drop in the consumption of colistin in the pig production sector in Spain. The REDUCE program has already reached a drop in the consumption of colistin by 97.18% in swine (2015-2018).
Generally speaking, the commitment made by a great part of the sector has been very important, and the results are clearly visible.
Can we improve and reach the EU levels? Can the increase in mortality be an obstacle for the reduction in the use of antibiotics?
Watch our webinar again to know the opinions of the experts.
On this occasion, we count on renowned veterinarians in the pig sector:
The debate does not revolve around if antibiotics are necessary or not, because we cannot eliminate all the bacteria in the planet.
Currently, the pharmaceutical laboratories invest their resources in other projects, and they have lost interest in the creation of new kinds of antibiotics because it is not profitable, neither for animal nor human consumption.
Summarising: Antibiotics: as few as possible, as many as needed.
That is how the Spanish veterinarians put this into practice: the Administration leads the way by checking the amount of antibiotics administered by each veterinarian. Still, there is a certain feeling of guilt among the professionals when antibiotics are used, but they have all adapted to the new guidelines and always prescribe them following these regulations.
One Health and antibiograms
In the webinar basic advice was also given to get to reduce the consumption of antibiotics as, for instance, cleaning the premises between batches, providing water and feed in perfect conditions, the professionalisation of the sector, that allows a better management of the animals, and to reduce the animal density on the fattening farms.
And they reached the One Health concept. The issue regarding resistances is not only focused on the animals, but also on the environment.
We stand up for the One Health approach. Veterinarians and scientists are aligned with this concept, but most of them do not believe in it.
Antibiograms. There was a debate, at length, regarding these tests. They are very helpful, but a field veterinarian cannot wait for the results of an antibiogram, because they must administer something to the sick animal until they obtain the results. They must rely on their experience for choosing a treatment.
Alternatives to antibiotics
The Reduce Colistin plan was successful because we had zinc oxide to use instead of colistin, but in 2022 its use will not be allowed. We must look for another option. Are we ready for that?
It is here where probiotics, phytotherapies, etc. step in. Are they alternatives or realities?
The lack of regulation has entailed the mistrust regarding these products, but when business firms feel protected by the legislation, these products will be a very important alternative. Besides, they are natural products that are never going to hurt.
It is obvious that happy pigs are healthier. Animal welfare and vaccines have substantially improved animal health.
We all want the best for the sector, and by working together we will reach the progress needed to continue leading the pig sector.
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