Significant drop in veterinary antibiotics sales across Europe
Randox Food Diagnostics recently reported that the European Parliament has banned the use of antibiotics that are important for human medicine use on animals, and is prohibiting any antimicrobials in livestock without a vet prescription. The new legislation, that is to become law by 2022, states that antimicrobials cannot be used to improve performance or compensate for poor animal conditions.
The European Medicines Agency (EMA) have now documented a significant drop in overall veterinary antibiotic sales across Europe. The EMA recognise that the reduction highlights the efforts made by the European Union (EU) and various stakeholders, promoting prudent use of antibiotics in the animal sector and its positive impact. The reduction of antibiotic use in food-producing animals is a key pillar to the EUs One Health Action Plan against Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR), according to a report conducted by the University of Minnesota.
30 countries in total submitted data between 2011 and 2016. German antibiotic sales dropped by 58%. However, whilst the majority of countries saw a drop in sales, six countries reported an increase of more than 5%. Germany’s implementation of an antibiotic minimising programme has helped the country to minimise antibiotic use, by requiring farmers raising cattle, pigs, chickens, or turkeys to report the frequency of antibiotic treatment on their farm every 6 months. If animal treatment frequency is above the median of all farms, operators must evaluate their usage with a veterinarian.
This major step forward in public health has a direct impact on the environment and food. Randox Food Diagnostics recognise the importance of improving the global food safety chain, and continue to transform the landscape by developing high quality revolutionary screening products. Our reliable and economic testing methods enable the user to detect multiple drug and toxin residues from a single sample, including antimicrobials, growth promoting compounds, synthetic steroids, anthelmintics and coccidiostats. With an expanding range of 37 ELISAs, 21 multiplex screening arrays and 20 enzymatic/colourmetric reagents, our trusted solutions ensure that better science means safer food.
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As a global company with its roots firmly planted in Northern Ireland’s glorious countryside, we’re extremely proud of the beautiful scenery that surrounds our County Antrim headquarters.
With an abundance of flora, fauna and natural wildlife living on the shores of Lough Neagh – where we have our offices – we know the importance of looking after the environment. After all, at Randox HQ we are lucky enough to admire the view from our office windows every day.
That’s why we have a dedicated Environmental Management team at Randox – whose role it is to prevent pollution, reduce waste, recycle consistently, and in general, to control and reduce the risks to air, land and water.
In this month’s #WeAreRandox interview, we chat to Charles McGonagle, Randox Environmental Manager, about a typical day in his job, the importance of respecting your local environment, and what it is that makes his career so worthwhile.
Here’s Charles’ story.
We’re very lucky that at Randox we get to work in such a beautiful part of the Northern Irish countryside. Our headquarters are located just outside Crumlin, near the International Airport, and sit just on the edge of Lough Neagh, the biggest lake in UK and Ireland.
It was recently named one of the Top 100 global sustainable destinations – an initiative which aims to recognise tourism destinations that have worked hard to make a difference and take sustainability seriously. And that’s certainly what we do here at Randox.
We take our environmental responsibility very seriously, not only because of our location, but also because we owe much of our 35 years of success to the support from the local community in which Randox was raised – so we like to give back when we can.
Each year our team plant a new area of trees around Lough Neagh, to make sure the area continues to develop and flourish. In addition to its rich collection of trees, badgers, squirrels, insects and mushrooms, there are also 100,000 birds who flock to Lough Neagh during the winter, coming from places as far away as Canada, Iceland and Russia, and we’re passionate about maintaining this sort of wildlife diversity in the Lough.
Everyone at Randox has their role to play in achieving this aim – not just the Environmental team. A typical day for me would involve a site visit to a particular area of the company, to monitor its activity and environmental performance, and identify areas for improvement, so every day I’m in a different area, learning something new and interesting about the company. With such diversity in the activities and processes the environmental team are involved in, everyone across the company gets the opportunity to review and evaluate their impact on the environment.
Whether a scientist or marketer, manufacturing operative or salesperson, we all make an effort to reduce our waste where we can – for example by turning off our computers, heating and lighting when not in use, and maintaining our equipment properly so we maximise their efficiency. In our attempts to reduce our atmosphere emissions and energy use, every little helps!
Our engineering and manufacturing team, in particular, take environmental factors into consideration daily – whether the material they have chosen is environmentally friendly, if their processes are efficient and if waste material can be recycled.
And our training department has also recently moved onto a paperless data management system to reduce our impact on the environment even more.
I think that’s one of the most rewarding things about my job – seeing people get involved and engaged in ways in which we can improve our environmental friendliness. As someone who is passionate about protecting and improving the environment – I studied Environmental Management at university and then worked with the Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute – I feel very lucky to work in a company which places such importance on looking after the environment and reducing its carbon footprint.
Randox are constantly trying to find more ways to reduce environmental impact, contribute to the reduction of global CO2 emissions, and make sure that this area of outstanding natural beauty in County Antrim is preserved for many generations to come.
For further information on what we do at Randox to protect the local environment, please contact the Randox PR Team: phone 028 9442 2413 or email firstname.lastname@example.org