“An emphasis on sound animal husbandry and healthy animals kept to high welfare standards will help minimise routine reliance on antimicrobials” (CHAWG report, June 2016)
Through working together, the UK livestock industry has lowered its use of antibiotics by 40% over the last five years. The UK is now one of the lowest users of antibiotics to treat farm animals in Europe. Please click here to read further on this.
When properly used, antibiotics are essential for treating infection in animals, but excessive and inappropriate use of medicines is a problem as this can drive increased resistance. This is why we have an active programme to address antibiotic use in farming and at all times promote preventative practice to ensure health conditions are treated proactively, thus reducing the need for antibiotics.
- Colistin is prohibited in all our own brand fresh meat and dairy products.
- No pork in our own-brand fresh supply chain is treated with any antibiotics critically important to human health.
- Farms which supply our other fresh meat, fish, dairy and eggs are required to only use critically important antibiotics (as defined by the European Medicines Alliance) as a last resort, if at all.
- Our own brand products are produced from animals that are not routinely receiving antibiotics when they are not needed.
- Farms supplying Morrisons with fresh meat, fish, dairy and eggs monitor and report their antibiotic use.
- We also work closely with RUMA and are part of the Executive Steering Group for the ‘Food Industry Initiative for Antimicrobials’ and a member of the BRC’s working group on AMR.
For more information on our approach to antibiotic usage, click here
Antibiotics used as animal growth promoters are strictly forbidden on any farms supplying ANY Morrisons own brand products.
At all times, farmers observe strict withdrawal periods for any animal or bird who may have received an antibiotic treatment; regulated residue levels means food is always safe to eat
Animal and bird welfare is important for our business, our customers, and for the farms we work with. That’s why on occasion and after scientific diagnosis, vets working with our supplying farms may need to prescribe antibiotics to livestock to treat certain health conditions.
Our work includes:
- Having a robust methodology in place to monitor the use of antibiotics in our fresh poultry, dairy and egg supply chains
- Working with our farmers, vets and universities to help develop monitoring tools for the UK pork, beef and sheep sectors, which have a wide variety of farm-based IT systems
- Ensuring active herd and flock health plans are being used on farm, developed in association with the farm vet, so reducing the need for antibiotics in the first place.
We will continue to work with farmers and vets, who are the gatekeepers of antibiotics on farm to maintain the momentum of reducing antibiotic use on farms, and ensuring antibiotics are only used when absolutely necessary.
Morrisons is part of the Food Industry Initiative on Antimicrobials (FIIA) which has the stated vision of ‘Retailers, manufacturers, processors and food service companies coming together to promote and support responsible antibiotic use and action on antimicrobial resistance’. The intention of this initiative is to support and engage with existing industry groups working in this area, ensuring work is aligned, and duplication of effort avoided. FIIA has published three policies covering: Responsible Use of Antibiotics, Measurement of Antibiotic Data, and a Code of Conduct on Access to and Use of Industry Data. Morrisons supports and subscribes to these policies as part of its approach to antibiotic stewardship. The policies and further information about FIIA can be found at www.fiia.co.uk.