Sales of antibiotics for livestock drop 41 percent as result of FDA efforts

Sales of medically important antibiotics for use in food animals are down by 41 percent in two years as part of the FDA's campaign to preserve the efficacy of antibiotics. "We hope this downward trend will continue," said FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb on Tuesday. "These reductions are an indication that our ongoing efforts to support antimicrobial stewardship are having a significant impact."

FDA will strengthen controls over antibiotics in livestock, says Gottlieb

In the first days of 2017, the FDA instituted long-sought controls over farm use of antibiotics, with a ban on use of medically important antibiotics as a growth promoter in cattle, hogs and poultry. FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb says the next two steps in promoting antimicrobial stewardship …

USDA chief scientist slams WHO antibiotic recommendations

The USDA’s acting chief scientist, Chavonda Jacobs-Young, has publicly criticized the World Health Organization’s updated recommendations for curbing antibiotic use on farms, citing poor science.

Sales of antibiotics for livestock drop for the first time, FDA data show

The amount of antibiotics sold for use in livestock in the United States has dropped for the first time since data collection began, according to FDA numbers. The data also show for the first time which types of meat animals are receiving the most antibiotics. (No paywall)

Selective breeding of tilapia can reduce need for antibiotics

Work by two USDA molecular biologists shows that tilapia, a commonly consumed food fish in the United States, can be selectively bred for resistance to two types of streptococcosis bacteria. Fish farmers frequently turn to antibiotics to fight diseases such as strep in farm-raised tilapia.

San Francisco grocers may have to disclose antibiotics used in meats they sell

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors is expected to vote next Tuesday on an ordinance that would require large grocers in the city to report on antibiotics used in producing the meat they sell, says the San Francisco Examiner. The information would be made public in an effort “to use the power of the consumer to force marketplace change.”

Former FDA official is named as leader of CSPI

A veteran consumer advocate and public health official, Dr. Peter Lurie, a physician by training, is the new executive director and president of the consumer group Center for Science in the Public Interest. Lurie will succeed Michael Jacobson, a co-founder of CSPI in 1971, said the watchdog group, which is suing the FDA over its delay of menu labeling.

Maryland joins California in restricting use of antibiotics on livestock

Gov. Larry Hogan stood aside and let a Maryland law take effect without his signature that will bar use of medically important antibiotics to promote weight gain among cattle, hogs and poultry. The Maryland law will take effect on Jan. 1, 2018, the same implementation date as a similar law enacted in 2015 in California, the only other state to control antibiotic use with the goal of preserving the effectiveness of the drugs to fight disease in humans.

Is the ocean spreading antibiotic resistance?

Scientists with the Surfer Biome Project are investigating whether antibiotic-resistant microbes can be spread though ocean water, says The New York Times. By taking samples from surfers’ mouths, bodies, and boards, the project hopes to learn how easily resistant organisms can pass into the human body.