TF AMR

ANTIMICROBIAL RESISTANCE :
IDF has released a new factsheet – “Guidance on antimicrobial resistance from the dairy sector” -providing a global dairy position on AMR and giving recommendations for the prudent use of AMR to dairy farmers, veterinarians, food processing companies, pharmaceutical companies and regulators.

IDF encourages good animal health and welfare to minimize the need for antimicrobial use. IDF promotes prudent and responsible use of antimicrobial agents within the global dairy industry to ensure that they continue to be effective and useful for curing diseases in animals. This factsheet complements the already existing IDF Guide to Prudent Use of Antimicrobials Agents in Dairy Production1.

Q&AS :
The IDF Factsheet Guidance in Antimicrobial Resistance from the Dairy Sector explains IDF’s global dairy position on AMR and support the harmonized implementation of the global strategies on AMR.
What is an antibiotic/antimicrobial?

An antibiotic/antimicrobial is a substance that has the capacity to selectively inhibit or kill microbes. Antimicrobial refers to any substance that can inhibit or kill microbes (such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites), including synthetic and semisynthetic compounds and substances without selective toxicity (e.g. biocides).

What is antimicrobial resistance (AMR)?

AMR is the ability of a microbe to survive or grow during antimicrobial treatment. AMR can be naturally present in some microorganisms or it can be acquired via mutations, or horizontal or vertical gene transfer.

Why is AMR a global concern?

New AMR mechanisms are emerging and spreading globally, threatening our ability to treat common infectious diseases, resulting in prolonged illness, disability, and death of animals and humans. The misuse and overuse of antimicrobials is accelerating this process

Why is the IDF working on AMR?

The IDF promotes prudent and responsible use of antimicrobial agents within the global dairy industry to ensure that they continue to be effective and useful for keeping animals in good health, and avoid eventual transfer of AMR bacteria to the human population.

How are antimicrobials used in the dairy sector?

The dairy sector uses antimicrobials to treat certain infectious diseases (such as mastitis, lameness and pneumonia). In most countries regulation and commercial incentives strictly control the use of antimicrobials. Dairy animals are treated individually and non-therapeutic measures are incorporated in disease control. When antimicrobial agents are used, they are mostly administered locally for specific purposes. The dairy industry conducts extensive monitoring of antimicrobial use including testing to ensure unacceptable residues are not present in milk. By killing micro-organisms, heat treatment of milk like traditional pasteurization methods provides an effective control measure to assist the management of foodborne AMR.

Why is it crucial to have a common understanding of the issue at national and at global level?

AMR is a complex problem that affects all living beings and is driven by many interconnected factors. Single, isolated interventions have limited impact. Coordinated action is required to minimize the emergence and spread of AMR.

All countries need national action plans on AMR. WHO member countries have agreed to develop such.

Greater innovation and investment are required in research and development of new antimicrobial medicines, vaccines, bio-control agents, biosecurity measures and diagnostic tools, as well as for a better understanding of the risk factors for increasing AMR.

Which international organizations are working on this challenge and which global approaches to manage AMR are currently in place?

A Global Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance was developed in 2015 by the World Health Organization (WHO) in coordination with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE). The Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC) is leading the efforts of AMR on food safety through an Intergovernmental Task Force on AMR. The Task Force addresses all uses on antimicrobials in agriculture products (i.e. animals and crops) to minimize the potential development of foodborne antimicrobial resistance.

This Global Action Plan underscores the need for an effective “one health” approach involving coordination among numerous international sectors and actors, including human and veterinary medicine, agriculture, finance, environment, and well-informed consumers.

The objective is to have multi-sectorial national action plans in place by the 2017 World Health Assembly.

What are the intended results of the IDF Task Force on AMR?

An internal reference document is aimed for IDF members to support the development of National Action Plans for adequate AMR management for the dairy sector, and to ensure the alignment of National Action Plans with OIE, WHO and FAO’s Global Action Plan.

The external document IDF Factsheet on Guidance in Antimicrobial Resistance from the Dairy Sector explains IDF’s global dairy position on AMR and support the harmonized implementation of the global strategies on AMR.

These documents complement the already existing IDF Guide to Prudent Use of Antimicrobial Agents in Dairy Production