OIE Takes Aim At Antimicrobial Resistance

The World Organization for Animal Health meets this week in Morocco address the global rise of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in livestock production. ( OIE )

A conference in Morocco this week may significantly impact how you’ll use antibiotics for your livestock in the future.

The 2nd Global Conference on Antimicrobial Resistance and Prudent Use of Antimicrobial Agents in Animals, began Monday with a ministerial panel from eight countries who spoke openly about their countries’ challenges and successes in implementing action plans to control the use of antimicrobials.

Organized by the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), the conference’s goal is to promote efforts to address the global rise of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in livestock production. The OIE says antimicrobials are essential to control and treat infections in animals and humans, but they are losing their efficacy because they are not being used prudently and responsibly.

“Farming represents 35% of Morocco’s GDP, so we are committed to tackling this issue both locally and nationally” said Aziz Akhannouch, Minister of Agriculture, Seafishing, Country Development, Waters and Forests of Morocco, a north African country of 35 million people. “This is an issue which transcends human and animal health, and we are proud that OIE has recognized the success of our strategy to promote animal health, control disease and stop the spread of AMR.”

According to OIE data, as of 2015, 64 countries had regulations against the use of antimicrobials for use in growth promotion. The U.S. has banned the use of antibiotics for growth promotion and implemented the Veterinary Feed Directive in January 2017.

The OIE is collecting comprehensive data about the use of antimicrobials in its 182-member countries. Last year, OIE says 84% of those countries provided data.

“We want to help all of our member countries to improve their ability to implement the OIE International Standards.” said Matthew Stone, Deputy Director General of the OIE. “Through the OIE Database on Usage of Antimicrobial Agents, the OIE builds national capacity - among all countries - to collect data and track antimicrobial use in animal health. This is a key indicator of our progress in preventing the development of AMR.”

For more information on antimicrobials and how the livestock industry is addressing resistance read the following stories: