Monday, January 16, 2012

Animal Antibiotics Needed To Feed The World

The head of the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) has weighed in on the animal antibiotics debate, saying what U.S. livestock producers have long argued: Using antibiotics in livestock production is vital to feeding a growing world population.

OIE Director Bernard Vallat told a news conference that animal antibiotics are “essential to ensure sufficient animal production to feed the planet. Without antibiotics there would be supply problems of animal protein for the human population.”

Vallet did call for action against abuse of antibiotics in livestock production, arguing for better training of veterinarians and for a fight against the illegal trade in antibiotics. “If you take the 100 poorest countries that take no precaution on this matter, we can see antibiotics passed around just like candies, without prescription,” he said.

His comments came on the heels of actions by both the United States and Germany to tighten restrictions on the use of antibiotics in livestock.

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