Studies have shown that Bacteria resistant to antibiotics could become more lethal than cancer by 2050 as illnesses which are now easily treated become deadly. One of the driving forces behind microbial resistance is the over-use of antibotics in livestock.
We spoke to a WHO expert, Elizabeth Taylor
who explained that this is already a major problem for Europe with at least 25,000 people already dying and around 1.5 billion euros lost to longer treatmnet and decreased Productivity.
Pigs are routinely prescribed large quantities of antibiotics, twice as much as human beings on average. The problem is that just like humans, animals also develop antibiotic resistance and that’s how bacteria resistant to all antibiotics appear overtime. It gets worse, antibiotic- resistant bacteria in the meat we eat can be transmitted to humans.
Elizabeth Taylor from WHO told Euronews:
“it’s not just that it’s going to kill more people because of infections but simple things like routine surgery, treatments of cancer will all become very, very much more risky if the drugs stop working.”
The great Danes
Elizbeth Taylor explained that all hope is not lost as Denmark has shown us:
“In Denmark in the pig industry it’s been phased out from this use and antibiotics are only used to treat animals when they are actually sick and Danish pork production has increased over this period as has the profitability.”
It seems that we need to go back to the drawing board and reimagine the ways we produce meat before it is too late.