The unnecessary use and misuse of of antibiotics in humans and animals contributes to the emergence of antibiotic resistance. Though India is world’s leading producer of milk, it also ranks fourth in the usage of antibiotics in the livestock. However little data exists highlighting how antibiotics are used in dairy farms especially in small-scale dairy farm in the country.
A study with mixed method approach was conducted in 491 small-scale dairy farms in two states of India, namely Assam and Haryana where farmers were interviewed, farms were inspected for the presence of antibiotics and milk samples were taken to find out antibiotic usage. Only 10%, of farmers surveyed confirmed using antibiotics in their dairy herds during the last 12 months. 8% of farms surveyed had milk samples positive for antibiotic residues. Only 2% of the farmers surveyed had heard of the term “withdrawal period” and 53% of the farmers who responded that they had administered antibiotics in last 12 months had never heard about the term “antibiotic”.
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