Growing Forward 2 - Final Report - Page 31

Currently, some participating veterinarians felt that there is, in general, good antibiotic efficacy with an absence of antibiotic resistance in most circumstances. There are very low residue violations, including decreased bulk milk tank residues or withdrawal violations. Furthermore, it was noted that there is increased participation by producers in monitoring residues and resistance. As an example, there is increased use of in-clinic and on-farm milk culture using petrifilm to selectively decrease antibiotic treatment for mastitis. The use of Category I drugs has been eliminated in some sectors, and has been reduced in others. It was felt that there is ongoing pressure on cost reduction, which is driving appropriate use of antibiotics with an increased emphasis on safe, value-priced food. It was also noted that there has been improvement in vaccination protocols utilized in food-producing animals. CURRENT SITUATION: STRENGTHS Overall, it was felt that the use of antibiotics and development of resistance is considered of great importance, which has led to more appropriate use of antibiotics. There is good collegiality and communication amongst veterinarians, particularly through the speciesinterest groups, which has led to information sharing and a shared accountability. Veterinarian-generated protocols are in demand and producers are following them appropriately. It was also noted that there is improved knowledge on the part of producers of the VCPR. It was noticed that there is an increased emphasis on cow comfort, which has decreased the need for antibiotics in that species. Some veterinarian participants claimed they noticed a greater awareness of the issues by stakeholders resulting in more informed decision-making. There are more discussions between stakeholders and some conversations are occurring between industry and government. There is an increased consumer demand for antibiotic free products, with revenue incentives for producers for a more “natural” product. It was also noted that Canadian animal-derived food products have a reputation for high quality. Currently, veterinarians felt that there is, in general, good antibiotic efficacy with an absence of antibiotic resistance in most circumstances. Generally, veterinarian respondents felt that there is an increased awareness of the changes needed and there exists some momentum now with impending changes in federal regulations such as the removal of growth promotion claims for antibiotics. CgFARAD and CIPARS were noted as current strengths. There is increased use of data, and an enhanced understanding of an appropriate VCPR and consequently more use of veterinary consultation services. There exist some interspecies industry examples that are effective and could be shared between species groups. CVO Survey respondents felt that Quality Assurance (QA)/On-Farm Food Safety Programs (OFFSP) for producers were having a positive impact in a number of ways. A list of potential impacts was provided and CVO Survey respondents ranked them as to the impact they have achieved (Figure 7). The most significant impact was reported in improved record keeping on farms, followed by improved dialogue between veterinarians and producers regarding antibiotic use, and increased producer awareness of antibiotic residues. CVO Facilitated Discussion participants felt that protocols and procedures are being followed well and there is an increased use of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) as farm sizes increase and as industry QA and OFFSPs are being adopted. 31  Antibiotic Use in Food-Producing Animals in Ontario: A Study of the Current Practises and Perceptions of Ontario Veterinarians