Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) is an increasing concern of governments around the world. The following is from the Food Standards Australia New Zealand website about a project it is undertaking as part of the Australian Government’s work on AMR. It is included here with permission and more information can be found at https://www.foodstandards.gov.au/science/surveillance/Pages/Antimicrobial-resistance-surveillance-in-retail-food.aspx
Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has been funded by the Australian Government Department of Health to undertake a two-year project looking at antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in the Australian food supply.
AMR is widely recognised as a global health priority. Resistant organisms exist in humans, animals, food, plants and the environment. The main driver of this resistance is antimicrobial usage.
The Australian Government has developed a national approach to tackle AMR. Australia’s National Antimicrobial Resistance Strategy – 2020 and Beyond (the 2020 Strategy) was endorsed by the Council of Australian Governments in March 2020. It sets a 20-year vision to protect the health of humans and animals by controlling and combating AMR while continuing to have effective antimicrobials available. This holistic and multi-sectoral One Health approach is led by the Australian Government departments of Health and Agriculture, Water and the Environment. Other agencies including FSANZ are involved to ensure a whole-of-government approach.
FSANZ’s surveillance project aligns to Objective 5 of the 2020 Strategy and will provide an opportunity to advance the evidence base for AMR in retail food in Australia. The project is in its initial stages with stakeholder consultation due to commence in the second half of 2021. Food sampling will start in 2022.
The project sampling plan and overall design are being developed in consultation with an expert scientific advisory group. A targeted stakeholder engagement strategy is also being developed to ensure project aims, activities and outcomes are effectively communicated and delivered in collaboration with the food sector.
Keep an eye on the web page for project updates.
For more information on AMR and the National Strategy please visit https://www.amr.gov.au