The story of one sick little girl in The Netherlands caused pig farmers to started a movement that has stopped MRSA in pigs and resulted in the country cutting their antibiotics use in animals by 65% and, crucially, without affecting their profits.
Antibiotic resistant superbugs are a huge problem both in humans and in animals. Many animals reared for food are routinely fed antibiotics to prevent infections. Farmers across the world do it to protect their livestock and to safeguard their incomes. But some bugs are becoming resistant to these drugs because of their overuse – fuelling the rise of animal “superbugs” like MRSA that could potentially spread to humans. This means that animals and people can die from common infections because the antibiotics no longer work.