Animal Husbandry, Dairy & Fisheries Sector – Pashudhan Sanjivani, E- Pashudhan Haat, etc

Antibiotic Colistin banned in animal food industry


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Colistin

Mains level : AMR and its hazards in India

  • The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has issued an order prohibiting the manufacture, sale and distribution of colistin and its formulations for food-producing animals, poultry, aqua farming and animal feed supplements.

What is Colistin?

  • According to the WHO, Colistin is a “reserve” antibiotic, which means it is supposed to be considered a “last-resort” option in treatment and used only in the most severe circumstances, when all other alternatives have failed.
  • However, this strong antibiotic has been “highly misused” in India’s livestock industry to prevent diseases and as promote growth of such animals.
  • Medical professionals have been alarmed by the number of patients who have exhibited resistance to the drug.
  • Most are not aware of the presence of colistin, since it comes mixed in the feed. A bulk of colistin (nearly 95%) is imported from China.

Alarm for India

  • A 2017 global study on antibiotic use in farm animals projected the consumption of antibiotics through animal sources to nearly double during 2013-2030.
  • This means India’s AMR problem is expected to worsen due to the consumption of antibiotics through animal sources.
  • The study ranked India the fourth largest consumer of antibiotics in food animals globally after China, the United States and Brazil.
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