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Antimicrobial resistance in food and agriculture












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    Brochure, flyer, fact-sheet
    FAO Initiatives on prevention and control of Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) 2017
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    Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) occurs when micro-organisms – bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites – evolve resistance to antimicrobial substances, like antibiotics, antifungals and others. This occurs naturally through adaptation to the environment or through selective pressure when microorganisms come into contact with antimicrobials. The process is accelerated when there is inappropriate or excessive use of antimicrobials. As a result, medicines that were once effective treatments for disea se in people and animals become less effective or not effective at all, leading to a reduced ability to successfully treat infections. This in turn leads to more severe or prolonged illnesses, increased mortality, production losses in agriculture and reduced livelihoods and food security.
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    Booklet
    Africa Regional Strategy on Antimicrobial Resistance Communications and Advocacy 2022
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    Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) occurs when germs, including bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites change over time and no longer respond to antimicrobials – antibiotics, antivirals, antifungals and antiparasitic agents – making infections harder to treat and increasing the risk of disease spread, severe illness and death. Antimicrobial resistant germs are found in people, animals, food, plants and the environment (in water, soil and air). They can spread from person to person or between people and animals,including from food of animal origin. While AMR occurs naturally over time, usually through genetic changes, the main drivers of AMR include the misuse and overuse of antimicrobials in human health and agriculture; lack of access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) for both humans and animals; poor infection and disease prevention and control in healthcare facilities and farms; poor access to quality, affordable medicines, vaccines and diagnostics; lack of awareness and knowledge; and weak enforcement of legislation. Minimizing the emergence and spread of AMR requires a coordinated, focused multisectoral and multinational effort. The Africa Regional Strategy on Antimicrobial Resistance Communications and Advocacy was developed to serve as a guide for African countries to improve awareness of AMR and its consequences in Africa, to promote careful use of antimicrobials among key stakeholders, and to support countries to communicate on AMR in a consistent manner.
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    Booklet
    White paper: Antimicrobial resistance in the animal sector in India 2024
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    The phenomenon in which bacteria do not respond to antibiotics, when given in accordance with standard treatment guidelines, is called antimicrobial resistance (AMR). It leads to prolonged treatment, longer infectivity of the patient, use of additional and expensive investigations and potentially toxic drugs, and huge economic cost to the patient, society, and the country. AMR has been developing rapidly against even newly discovered antibiotics. The bacteria are versatile and ingenious in developing a plethora of defence mechanisms against antibiotics. Many bacterial species have accumulated resistance to multiple drugs. These are known as multidrug-resistant (MDR) organisms and in layman language as “superbugs”. The spectrum and reach of MDR pathogens have been rapidly increasing. AMR in animal pathogens makes disease treatments ineffective, increases the severity of the disease, reduces productivity and leads to economic losses. In addition, more than half the quantity of antimicrobials used in animals/fish is excreted as waste contaminating soil, water and the environment. This also contributes to the emergence and spread of AMR through selection pressure on microorganisms in the environment. Besides, antimicrobial usage can lead to antimicrobials residues in the edible animal/fish products which are a public health risk.

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