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Imposing user fees on the non-human use of antibiotics in the agriculture and aquaculture industries

Economics professor Aidan Hollis at the University of Calgary, Canada and co-author Ziana Ahmed published their research on viable ways to avoid the potential health crisis posed by the current overuse of antibiotics in the sector.

They show that imposing a user fee on the non-human uses of antibiotics, similar to the way in which logging companies pay stumpage fees and oil companies pay royalties, would deter the low-value use of antibiotics, with higher costs encouraging farmers to improve their animal management methods and to adopt better substitutes for the drugs, such as vaccinations. Hollis also suggests that an international treaty could ideally be imposed. Such a treaty might have a fair chance of attaining international compliance, as governments tend to be motivated by revenue collection.


(EurekAlert, 25/12/2013)