To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of a preventative approach to animal health in combating antimicrobial resistance; and whether it is his policy that reducing the effect of that resistance is a key public good.
Reducing the spread of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and the need to use antibiotics through infection prevention and control in human and animal health is one of a number of cores principles in the UK’s 5 Year National AMR Action Plan and 20 Year Vision. Our Action Plan recognises antimicrobial resistance as a global public good. This is reflected in the high priority the UK gives to addressing the problem of AMR. Since 2014, the sales of antibiotics for use in food-producing animals in the UK have dropped by 40%. And in the Action Plan, the government has committed to working with vets and farmers to further reduce antibiotic use in animals by 25% between 2016 and 2020, with objectives to be refreshed by 2021.