NEW specific targets for antibiotic use by farmers are on the cards and set to be revealed at RUMA’s 2017 conference, to be held on October 27 in London.

Hosted in association with the Veterinary Medicines Directorate , the conference, entitled “Antibiotic resistance – facing up to the AMR challenge” is set to include the latest official antibiotic sales data for farm animals, as well as revealing the farming industry’s new sector-specific targets.

The conference will open with an address from parliamentary under-secretary of state for rural affairs and biosecurity Lord Gardiner, followed by an update on the new 2016 antibiotic sales data for farm animals, presented by VMD’s head of the antimicrobial resistance team Dr Kitty Healey.

Responding to Dr Healey’s presentation will be Professor Christianne Glossop, chief veterinary officer for Wales, and Professor Paul Cosford, director for health protection at Public Health. 

Professor Glossop, on behalf of all four of the UK’s CVOs, will examine the link between antibiotic use and animal welfare, and Professor Cosford will provide perspectives from a human health angle.

A post-lunch session looking at scientific challenges will introduce members of RUMA’s independent scientific group. They will aim to host a robust debate, with audience participation, around the myths and facts concerning antibiotic resistance and farm animals. 

The conference will conclude with a summary from the chief veterinary officer Nigel Gibbens, who will review progress and set a challenge for the next two years.