September 25, 2018

FDA Releases 2012 NARMS Retail Meat Annual Report

The FDA has released two reports that measure antimicrobial resistance in certain bacteria isolated from raw meat and poultry. The data is collected through the National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS).

FDAlogoThe 2012 Retail Meat Report summarizes key findings in bacterial resistance related to raw chicken, ground turkey, ground beef, and pork chops collected at retail stores around the country. The 2013 Retail Meat Interim Report is also being released today, which focuses only on Salmonella. These reports detail antimicrobial resistance in Salmonella, Campylobacter, E. coli, and Enterococcus.

The reports find that there was a decrease in third-generation cephalosporin resistance amount poultry meats in 2012 and 2013, although current cephalosporin resistance levels are above 2002 levels. In addition, resistance in Salmonella from chicken declined to 20%, and resistance in ground turkey declined to 9% of sales. Multi-drug resistance Salmonella was found in all retail meat sources, but there was a “continuous decline” in the proportion of those bacteria between 2011 and 2013.

But one finding was not as encouraging. Since 2005, when the government withdraw approval for the use of fluoroquinolones in poultry, there has been no change in fluoroquinolone resistance about Campylobacter isolates taken from chicken sold at retail.

Every year, at least 2,000,000 illnesses and 23,000 deaths in this country are caused by antibiotic resistant bacteria. The World Health Organization has stressed that we may be approaching a time when antibiotics will no longer be able to fight bacterial infections.

The Obama administration detailed a plan to slow development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria this year. That plan was to double the amount of Federal funding for fighting antibiotic resistant bacteria to more than $1.2 billion. That funding was not included in the budgets recently passed by Congress.

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