Pig producers are being urged to familiarise themselves with new guidelines on responsible use of antibiotics published by the Pig Health and Welfare Council (PHWC).
The guidelines, put together, by PHWC’s Antimicrobial Use sub-group, offer advice on using antibiotics when your veterinary surgeon recommends them in a way that is appropriate for your farm and the current health situation in your pigs.
They stress that antibiotic treatment should only be initiated after consultation with your veterinary surgeon. Pig farmers must ensure fundamentals such as ventilation, nutrition, water supply, housing, hygiene and biosecurity are well managed as these are crucial in controlling disease and reducing the need for antibiotics.
Where antibiotics are necessary, the guide recommends how to use them responsibly, to safeguard animal health and welfare. When used in conjunction with optimum management on farm, these measures aim to preserve the effectiveness of antibiotics for use in human and animal medicine.
The guidelines have been published on the AHDB website here
NPA senior policy advisor Georgina Crayford, who sits on the PHWC Antimicrobial, urged all producers to familiarise themselves with the guidelines to ensure the industry continues to use antibiotics responsibly and reduce use, while maintaining pig health and welfare.