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India caps antibiotic use in poultry

A new policy is to be introduced in India putting a cap on how much antibiotics can be used in producing poultry products and seafood, the Times of India is reporting.

The National Policy for Containment of Antimicrobial Resistance has named common antibiotics like tetracycline, oxytetracycline, trimethoprim and oxolinic acid, which "shall not exceed the prescribed tolerance limit". The use of over 20 antibiotics or pharmacologically active substances has been prohibited in seafood and poultry products.

Professor Randeep Guleria from AIIMS, a part of the task force, said, "Antibiotics are used by farmers to prevent infection in fish or poultry. However, till now there was no limitation. We didn't want such fish or meat to enter the food chain and lead to the emergence of antibiotic resistance in humans who eat it. That's why we have fixed limits."

Dr Ranjit Roychoudhury, a task force member and one of India's best known clinical pharmacologists, added, "poultry are fattened and fish are made bigger by pumping antibiotics and hormones for a better price. Eating such products on a regular basis can cause antibiotic resistance in humans."

Source: Times of India

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