INDIA – A new report by the India Animal Fund (IAF) and philanthropic organization Dasra reveals that India is the world’s fourth-largest user of antimicrobials in animal feed, with residues found in food animal products like chicken, meat, and milk.

The report, titled Our Shared Future – Securing Animal Welfare, Human Wellbeing, and Sustainability in India, emphasizes the projected increase in antimicrobial consumption in Indian livestock, expected to be the highest in the world from 2010 to 2030.

The report highlights that intensive confinement in livestock farming is a major contributor to antibiotic resistance, especially in developing countries.

 It notes that eggs harvested in unsanitary conditions show increased resistance to multiple antibiotics, some of which are critical for human medicine.

The comprehensive study underscores the importance of animal welfare in public health, labor welfare, and climate resilience by examining farmed animals, working animals, community animals, and animals used for testing and experimentation.

Among the critical findings, the report details the dire conditions faced by farm animals in India.

With over 4 billion animals, including bovines and birds, comprising the farm sector, the report found that animals in factory farms often endure long durations without food and water during transportation.

It also reports that 59% of dairies have animals suffering from illness and injury, 56% of dairy farmers milk sick animals, and 47% of dairy farms use the illegal drug oxytocin, banned under Section 12 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960.

The compelling findings of this report illustrate that prioritizing animal welfare is not just an ethical imperative but a cornerstone of sustainable development. As we face increasing environmental and health challenges, the integration of robust animal welfare regulations and practices becomes crucial for the future of our nation,” says Parag Agarwal, Founder of the India Animal Fund.

The report calls for urgent attention to improve welfare practices across the animal industry, emphasizing the interconnectedness of animal welfare, human health, and sustainability.

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