ANTIBIOTIC RESISTANCE AND DAIRY PRODUCTION: Frequently Asked Questions
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While there may be the potential to improve manure management systems (i.e. composting, storage, anaerobic digestion) to adequately mitigate antibiotic residues, ARB and ARG before land application, currently the best way to reduce the release of antibiotics, and generation of ARB and ARG from a farm is to optimize and reduce the use of antibiotics. This can be accomplished by improving animal husbandry, farm hygiene and working with your veterinarian to promote animal health, improve treatment protocols, and record keeping to optimize antibiotic use, limit the use of non-therapeutic antibiotics, and avoid the use of ‘critically important antimicrobials’ for human health. Critically important antimicrobials are antibiotics that are 1) “the sole, or one of limited available therapy, to treat serious human disease”, and 2) “used to treat diseases caused by either: organisms that may be transmitted to humans from non-human sources or, human diseases causes by organisms that may acquire resistance genes from nonhuman sources”. Critically important antibiotics include fluoroquinolones (e.g. enrofloxacin), beta-lactams (e.g. ceftiofur, penicillin), and macrolides (e.g. tulathromycin), and highly important antibiotics include tetracyclines (e.g. oxytetracycle) and sulfonamides (e.g. sulfadimethoxine). The complete list of critically important antimicrobials can be found at the World Health Organization.
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This material is based upon work that is supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture, under award number 2016-68003-24601. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
dairy; antibiotic; resistance; bacteria
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