September 27, 2018


International commission calls for responsible antimicrobial use in egg production



During the Global Leadership Conference of the International Egg Commission (IEC) in Kyoto, Japan, this month, the International Egg Commission and its members affirmed their support for the responsible use of all antimicrobials.


The commission explained its promotion for responsible use as a way to ensure the long-term safe production of eggs and safeguard the availability of eggs and egg products for global consumption.


"Biosecurity and good farming practice remain the prime tools for disease prevention and the IEC will continue to support knowledge sharing of biosecurity and good farming practice," the IEC said.


It went further by accepting that antimicrobial resistance is a global concern, and will call for the egg layer sector to cut antimicrobials use, "especially those for which resistance could pose the greatest animal and human health global risk."


In addition, the commission acknowledged that "the egg layer industry is a limited user of antimicrobials." However, "this limited use does not obviate the need for coordinated action with other animal product and human medical representative bodies, through the One Health approach of the WHO, OIE and FAO," it added.


"The IEC will actively support the One Health approach (of the WHO, OIE and FAO) to dealing with AMR (antimicrobial resistance), working with intergovernmental organisations, governments and other stakeholders to achieve the best outcome for humanity."


The IEC also stated that producers should be kept updated on the matter of antimicrobial resistance an should be able to "access new knowledge as and when it's made available."

"The IEC will endeavour to make knowledge on the subject as widely available as possible and stimulate governments and organisations to keep records on the use of antimicrobials," it said.


To this end, the commission declared that antimicrobial use should happen under veterinary supervision and "in conformance with national authority approvals."


"The IEC does not support the use of the Highest Priority Critically Important Antimicrobials in animal agriculture. The IEC will promote and take due note of recommendations made by the OIE, the WHO and the FAO," the commission said.


It also recognises that "risk analysis is the best tool to determine the risk/benefit balance of antimicrobials and their usage conditions."

Lastly, the commission affirms its support of scientific research pertaining to the "development, transfer and control of antimicrobial resistance in the production chain and on the potential impact for animal health and welfare, food safety, public health and human medicine."


- International Egg Commission