According to the European Medicines Agency (EMA) Spain is currently the Member State that leads the sale of antibiotics for veterinary use, intended for the vast majority of the livestock industry.
Massive treatment with antibiotics is used to avoid possible epidemics due to the overcrowding and lack of well-being in which millions of animals live on farms. A serious threat to animals and humans because, the greater the use of antibiotics, the greater the likelihood of developing resistant to antibiotics themselves and consequently, also cause epidemic outbreaks and infections impossible to treat.
Some experts estimate that within 30 years, bacteria resistant to antibiotics will cause more deaths than cancer or traffic accidents. Each year 25,000 people die in Europe and 2,500 in Spain, due to the resistance to antibiotics.
The meat produced in Spain has three times more antibiotics than that produced in Germany, the largest producer of meat in the eurozone and almost ten times more than that produced in Denmark, according to Eurostat data.
The figures show that mass treatments are a recurrent practice in Spain (see figure 1), and in many cases farmers administer antibiotics to animals without prior veterinary consultation.