Stop use of antibiotics 3 days prior to market supply, DFCO advisory to poultry dealers

Amid reports about overuse of antibiotics in poultry chicken, the Drugs and Food Control Organization (DFCO) on Tuesday issued an advisory on use of antibiotics in poultry birds.
“The poultry farm dealers shall stop use of antibiotics in poultry birds 72 hours (3 days) prior supplying to market,” said the advisory.
It has strictly asked the farmers that antibiotics should be administered to the chicken only under veterinary supervision. “Strict action under law would be initiated against violators,” it said.
The advisory came days after the 2017 study by New Delhi-based center for science and environment asserted that “life-saving drugs like Colistin were being used to fatten the chicken and poultry farms are breeding grounds of superbugs.”
Experts have been raising concern over the use of drugs – steroids and antibiotics – in chicken fearing that their use might be adversely affecting human health. Stakeholders have been calling for strict vigil on poultry rearing practices as well as close scrutiny of meat transported into Kashmir from other states.
While quoting the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006, today’s order, issued by deputy controller of DFCO, warns of strict action against violators. “The Act provides that chicken meat should be free from antibiotic residue.”
Last week, DFCO, in a meeting held with poultry dealers of Kashmir registered with the department, had issued verbal orders for barring transport of dressed chicken into the Valley. “We have sought that only cold chain maintaining refrigeration vans be used to transport dressed chicken into Kashmir. For now, we have issued a ban on any supply of dressed chicken,” assistant commissioner food safety, Hilal Mir, told Kashmir Post.