In a letter to USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack, the president of the American Veterinary Medical Association has reiterated that limiting antibiotic use in livestock may carry consequences for both animal and human health. The AVMA official sent the letter last week.
In the letter, the AVMA official, René Carlson, DVM, expressed her concern about “recent comments made while discussing the Administration’s food safety efforts as they related to the use of antibiotics in food animals.”
The letter called for caution in placing restrictions on antibiotic use in food animals. “To restrict certain uses of antibiotics without careful consideration of the risks and benefits to both humans and animals removes a very valuable tool in the veterinarian’s medical bag for preventing and minimizing animal disease and suffering while also ensuring a safe and wholesome food supply.”
The letter also confirmed that AVMA strongly supports the judicious use of antibiotics in food producing animals.
AVMA is currently collaborating with the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and the Food and Drug Administration in developing programs addressing the judicious use of antimicrobials in food animals and oversight of antimicrobial use.