Eliminating the preventive use of Category III antibiotics: Have your say!


Chicken Farmers of Canada is seeking stakeholder input on the antimicrobial use (AMU) reduction strategy to conduct a re-assessment of the goal to eliminate the preventive use of Category III antibiotics by the end of 2020. Effectively, the sole antibiotic impacted is Bacitracin.

The Board of Directors will be considering this re-assessment in December 2019.

To help gather input from stakeholders, a survey was conducted in June – thank you to all those who provided input at that time. The survey provided valuable information to Chicken Farmers of Canada as the impacts of and opportunities of eliminating the preventive use of Category III antibiotics are considered.

Given that the elimination of preventive Category II use only recently occurred, Chicken Farmers of Canada wants to provide the opportunity to hear about the impacts and to understand if there have been changes since the 1st survey was done in June.

The objective of the second survey is to:

  • validate the first survey results, providing as much info to Chicken Farmers of Canada Directors as possible
  • allow stakeholders to provide any further experiences as to the impacts of the preventive Category II elimination
  • assess the level of preparedness for the elimination of the preventive use of Category III antibiotics by the end of 2020

Feedback on this questionnaire is being requested from all stakeholders in the Canadian chicken production value-chain. This second survey will be open to all stakeholders, whether they completed the first survey or not.

The survey will be open from October 4th to 25th and can be accessed at https://www.surveymonkey.ca/r/FallCategoryIII or by clicking on this link. The survey can be completed via computer, tablet or phone.


Please forward this reassessment questionnaire to others that would have an

interest in providing input.


Background – AMU Reduction Strategy

Chicken Farmers of Canada’s antimicrobial use (AMU) reduction strategy is a step-wise approach to eliminate the preventive use of antimicrobials of human importance (Category I-III). The strategy has been developed to provide a sustainable means of meeting consumer expectations, while protecting the health and welfare of birds, and preserving effective treatment options.

Reduction Timelines:

  • Step 1: Elimination of the preventive use of Category I antibiotics in May 2014
  • Step 2: Elimination of the preventive use of Category II antibiotics at the end of 2018
  • Step 3: Goal to eliminate the preventive use of Category III antibiotics by the end of 2020

The AMU reduction strategy only focusses on preventive use of Category I, II, and III antibiotics. This is not a “Raised Without the use of Antibiotics” strategy and continues to allow:

  • The use of antibiotics for treatment of clinical or subclinical infectious diseases identified in a flock of birds
  • The preventive use of ionophores (Category IV antibiotics)
  • The use of chemical coccidiostats

For more information on the AMU strategy, please visit: https://www.chickenfarmers.ca/antimicrobial-strategy/.

Categorization of Antibiotics

Antibiotics are ranked (Categories I-IV) by Health Canada based on their importance to human medicine. The following table provides the classification of antibiotics:

Chemical coccidiostats are not defined as antibiotics. These products include: Nicarb, Robenz, Amprol, Zoamix, Coyden, Stenerol, Clinicox, and Deccox.


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