Antibiotics in feed
Studies show that many instances of diarrhoea in young animals are caused by nutritional shortcomings. This could be prevented by better selection and composition of the ingredients in the diet – with no use of antibiotics at all.
Faced with consumer and regulatory pressure, EU producers are now aiming to claim ‘no antibiotics ever’. Outside the EU, various definitions of antibiotic-free (ABF) production are in circulation. Reduced use, ionophores only, organic production with no antibiotics, ionophore coccidiostats, chemical anticoccidials or chemical antibacterials, such as sulphonamides, are among the approaches employed. ‘No antibiotics ever’ refers to animals raised without antibiotics in their feed and water and injections that include no ionophores, although they may still receive coccidiostats. This challenging production requirement demands that special attention is paid to bacteria control during hatching or weaning and healthy gut development. It also requires careful selection of high quality ingredients for young animal diets.
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