- Freeimages.com/bugdogAntibiotic use in animals is expected to increase by 67 percent by 2030, according to one study.
As the demand for meat and poultry continues to grow, the use of animal antibiotics is predicted to rise an estimated 67 percent from 2010 to 2030, according to a study recently published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The countries that will see the largest increases in antibiotic use — 99 percent — include Brazil, India, Russia, China and South Africa, according to the report.
Scientists and public health officials fear that the overuse of antibiotics is leading them to lose their effectiveness against a range of previously treatable diseases, and fueling the rise of potentially deadly antibiotic-resistant bacteria. According to the Centers for Disease Control, at least 2 million people are infected by drug-resistant bacteria every year in the United States, and at least 23,000 people die because of such infections.
“The invention of antibiotics was a major public health revolution of the 20th century,” said Ramanan Laxminarayan, the study’s senior author and Director of the Center for Disease Dynamics, Economics and Policy (CDDEP). “Their effectiveness — and the lives of millions of people around the world — are now in danger due to the increasing global problem of antibiotic resistance, which is being driven by antibiotic consumption.”
According to the study — carried out by researchers from the CDDEP, Princeton University, the International Livestock Research Institute and the Université Libre de Bruxelles – two-thirds of the projected increase in antibiotic use is because more animals are being raised for consumption.
In 2014, the Food and Drug Administration reported a 16 percent increase in the amount of antibiotics sold for agriculture use between 2009 and 2012 in the U.S. alone.