European Commission adds new proposals for use of veterinary meds and medicated feed

The European Commission said it is adopting new proposals on the use of veterinary medicinal products and medicated feed to foster healthier animals and combat antimicrobial resistance.

The action by the commission is designed to make more medicines available in the European Union to treat and prevent diseases in animals, RTT News reported. The proposals for updating medicated feed legislation, originally designed to address production animals, now covers companion animals.

"These proposals both have animal health and welfare at their heart," Tonio Borg, European Commissioner for Health, told RTT. "However, they also represent a major step forward for public health as they introduce measures that contribute towards combating the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), keeping antibiotics effective for people and animals alike."

The proposals, announced Sept. 10, go to other EU institutions like the the European Parliament and the Council for consideration. The EU banned the use of antibiotics as a growth agent in 2006.

In the U.S., overuse of medicated feed to induce quick weight gain in production animals to fatten them up prior to slaughter has come under regulatory fire. Last year, the FDA slammed drug companies for marketing antibiotics to production operators and farmers that weren't medically viable for their animals, and medical organizations such as the American Medical Association (AMA) have called for stronger federal regulations on using antibiotics in food animals for growth production purposes.

- read the RTT story