A newly published antimicrobial resistance (AMR) report covering raw retail meat and poultry in the USA shows “a number of important and positive trends” according to the National Chicken Council (NCC).
The report, produced by the US Food and Drug Administration, covers AMR data collected throughout 2014, especially in relation to Salmonella, Campylobacter, Escherichia coli (E. coli), and Enterococcus.
Key findings from the National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS) report include the following:
- Salmonella and Campylobacter prevalence in retail chicken meat samples continue to decline, and both are at their lowest levels since NARMS testing began (9.1% and 33% respectively).
- Most (82%) of human Salmonella isolates tested were not resistant to any of the tested antibiotics.
- Ceftriaxone, an extended-spectrum cephalosporin critical to treating severe Salmonella infections, continues to be effective, and resistance to the antibiotic has decreased in non-typhoidal Salmonella and E. coli.
- Human Salmonella isolates resistant to at least ampicillin, chloramphenicol, streptomycin, sulfonamides, and tetracyclines (ACSSuT) are at the lowest level (3.1%) since NARMS testing began.
- Bacterial strains that are resistant to all, or all but one, of the nine antimicrobial classes tested in NARMS are defined as “extremely drug resistant” by the FDA. In 2014, no retail chicken isolates of either Salmonella or E. coli were found to be extremely drug resistant.
NCC senior vice president of scientific and regulatory affairs, Ashley Peterson, welcomed the report’s findings, commenting that the council was glad to see “many positive trends” in the collected data, with both Salmonella and Campylobacter prevalence at their lowest levels since NARMS testing began, and critical antibiotics remaining effective in treating illnesses.
“Reports like this provide a strong case for the continued judicious use of antibiotics by poultry producers,” he said, adding that, when coupled with ongoing strategies to reduce Salmonella and Campylobacter, such work is aiding the reduction of the pathogen and the reduction of resistance.