Responsible use of antibiotics is just one part of an overall herd health management plan. Producers should sit down with their veterinarians to discuss how to apply the new VFD and prescription requirements and other herd health strategies. A veterinarian can help design herd health and production plans to decrease disease, enhance performance and produce safe, wholesome pork. Each producer should review these on-farm protocols to further minimize the need for antibiotic use.
Biosecurity – Prevent diseases by controlling traffic of pigs, people, vehicles and other items that can carry diseases into a herd, such as boots, coveralls and supplies.
Vaccinations – Successful vaccination depends on targeted use of vaccines at the right time for the right health concern.
Environment – Provide the proper environment for the animals’ age, weight and stocking density.
Management – Consider whether making certain management changes would further reduce the need for antibiotic use.
Feed additives – So far, no antimicrobial alternative has proven as universally effective as antibiotics alone. Evaluate each alternative with your veterinarian for the application in question. As always, read and follow all label directions for any additives.
Other Disease Strategies – A veterinarian can work to develop strategies to minimize disease risk through pig flows, herd health monitoring, disease surveillance and appropriate diagnostics.
Don’t forget about your farm employees, talk to them today about what lies ahead.
One Health Umbrella: Shared Responsibility, Opportunity to Combat Antibiotic Resistance
Because antibiotic resistance is a global concern, the worldwide “One Health” approach to combat antibiotic resistance is critical to human and animal health. This is a collaborative effort of multiple stakeholders to attain optimal health for people, domestic animals, wildlife, plants and the environment. Medical doctors and patients, veterinarians and farmers, along with government, academia and industry stakeholders, are cooperating. Pork producers play an important role in the shared effort to use antibiotics responsibly to help minimize the potential emergence of antibiotic resistant bacteria. In the end, this comprehensive and inclusive approach will create a win-win by protecting human and animal health.
To stay informed on the VFD and related regulations, bookmark,
home of the Pork Checkoff’s Antibiotics Resource Center on your computer or smart phone.