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ADF to submit evidence to EU crackdown on antibiotics

Following a request from the European Parliament, the European Commission has announced new plans to deal with antimicrobial resistance (AMR) across Europe. It says this problem causes 25,000 human deaths every year.

Increased resistance of microbes to drugs used for livestock is one probable cause of the high human death toll, and the Commission wants something done about it.

UK vets have largely welcomed the new 12-point plan that sets out to make an impact on AMR. Key actions include strengthening EU law on veterinary medicines, and bringing in new recommendations for the prudent use of antimicrobials. The European Parliament has already called for the phasing out of preemptive use of antibiotics in livestock, a move that is hoped to reduce drug resistance being transferred from animals to humans.

As a global leader in proactive herd hygiene, ADF will be submitting findings to the European Commission, as it looks at alternative approaches to the pre-emptive use of antibiotics. Information gathered since the Automatic Dipping and Flushing system was first introduced in 2005 will form a large part of ADF’s submission. The British company is proud to have led a revolution in a reduction of the amount of antibiotics used in dairy parlours around the world.

James Duke, founder and Director of ADF, said, “We fully back a farmer’s right to use antibiotics for treating specific health problems amongst their herds. It is often the only way of defeating infection. However, ADF knows that, as a forward-thinking company, it has a part to play in stopping the overuse of such drugs on a preemptive basis. That is why we’re pleased to be able to submit our findings to the Commission.”

Farmers using ADF report a dramatic reduction in the amount of antibiotics used. This is due to teat dip being injected into the head of each liner at exactly the right moment, before the teat is exposed after milking; this prevents bacteria entering the udder after milking when the teat canal is open and at its most vulnerable. Each teat is completely covered in dip, and every cluster is flushed and sanitised ready for the next cow with no potential for the transfer of infections.

James went on to say, “The system is designed to improve herd health, with savings of time and money an additional benefit. Many early adopters of ADF tell us that they are now getting more lactations from their cows and that they prefer milking cows that give more milk and are less hassle than heifers. Additional income from surplus heifers sold off the farm is a welcome and unforeseen bonus. Concern about the widespread use of antibiotics and the potential impact on humans and animals can only enhance the value of ADF. It is always more effective to tackle a problem proactively.”