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NPPC opposes new WHO antibiotic guidelines

The National Pork Producers Council is speaking out against the World Health Organization proposing a ban on disease prevention uses of antibiotics in food-animal production.

In a statement, NPPC says denying pigs, cows, and chickens necessary antibiotics would be unethical and immoral.

New WHO guidelines suggest farmers should stop using any antibiotics routinely to prevent disease in animals that are otherwise healthy, claiming use of antimicrobial medicines is a leading cause of antibiotic resistance.

NPPC counters while America’s pig farmers share WHO concerns about resistance, the pork industry has taken steps over the past 30 years to ensure antibiotic use leads to healthy animals and safe food.

The Council also points out using antibiotics to prevent disease supplants the need to use more potent medically important antibiotics in most cases.

NPPC concludes simply reducing on-farm use of antibiotics, as the WHO suggests, would likely have no effect on public health and jeopardize animal health.

The World Health Organization has no power to enforce its guidelines, which are up to national governments to accept or reject.

 

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