News and Opinions  –  2019

Proposed ban on colistin for animal use announced in Indonesia

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A ban on use of colistin in food-animal production and a series of colourful public events, university seminars and student competitions marked the World Antibiotic Awareness Week 2019 in Indonesia. ReAct participated in these events.

Street carnival in Lampung, Indonesia, during World Antibiotic Awareness Week. Photo: FAO/Sadewo.

Speaking at a ceremony in Bogor, Java, to launch information and educational materials on antimicrobial resistance for farmers by the Ministry of Agriculture, a top Indonesian official announced the proposed ban on use of colistin, a drug of last-resort in human health for severely resistant infections. Dr Ni Made Ria Isriyanti, Head of the Veterinary Medicine Control Sub-directorate, Directorate of Animal Health at the Ministry of Agriculture concluded:

“The details are still being discussed but the ban should be in place by early 2020.”

A survey of antimicrobial use in 2017 and 2018, in three Indonesian provinces found, in some areas, colistin formed 34 percent of all antibiotics used by farmers as prophylaxis or for treatment of their poultry. Enrofloxacin at 48.6 percent registered even higher use than colistin.

Awards to Indonesian poultry farmers

Citizens of Lampung town take part in a public event organized by city authorities to commemorate World Antibiotic Awareness Week. Photo: FAO/Sadewo.

At another function on 21 November, held in Lampung province in Sumatra island, awards were given to Indonesian poultry farmers who had adopted biosecurity measures to reduce antibiotic use and improve safety of their products. The awards ceremony, was attended by hundreds of farmers who are participating in a government-sponsored campaign, first launched in 2013.

At the seminar for farmers in Lampung. These are the farmers who have expressed their commitment to get the ‘nomor kontrol veteriner’ (NKV) in 2020. NKV is a government certification given to farmers who adopt, among others. biosecurity measures to reduce antibiotic use and improve safety of their products. Photo: ReAct Asia Pacific.

The campaign, carried out under the guidance of the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), involves adopting biosecurity measures, including strict zoning of production facilities, regular inspections for hygiene and adherence to protocols.  Successful farmers are given a ‘Nomor Kontrol Veteriner’ (NKV), which is a government certification on food safety. The program, which grew out of a FAO project to set up a model poultry farm in central Java is now being implemented in 14 Indonesian provinces.

“Farmers adopting these methods have seen a big drop in antibiotic consumption and also increase in productivity,”

said Alfred, from the outreach division of the FAO.

Misuse and overuse of antibiotics key drivers of resistance

The challenges of antimicrobial resistance that Indonesia faces are similar as those of many other low and middle income countries in the region and beyond. Misuse and overuse of antibiotics in humans and in livestock and aquaculture are the key drivers of resistance in the country.

While there are no formal estimates nationally, antimicrobial resistance is thought to be high and on the rise in the country. Indonesia is among the five countries with the greatest projected percentage increases in antimicrobial consumption by 2030. The five, selected from 50 countries with the largest amounts of antimicrobials used in livestock in 2010, include Myanmar (205%), Indonesia (202%), Nigeria (163%), Peru (160%), and Vietnam (157%).

Indonesia is taking action on antimicrobial resistance

Responding to the growing antimicrobial resistance challenges the Indonesian Ministry of Health set up a Working Committee on AMR Control (KPRA) in 2014. After consulting a wide range of stakeholders KPRA prepared the Strategic Plan of AMR Control in Indonesia 2015 – 2019 to improve public health through AMR control. Currently Indonesia is working on a new NAP draft for the period 2020-2024.


Presentation made by Dr Ni Made Ria Isriyanti, Head of  the Veterinary Medicine Control Sub-directorate, Directorate of Animal Health at the Ministry of Agriculture, Indonesia in Bogor, 19 November 2019

Progress towards antimicrobial resin stance containment and control in Indonesia. Parathon H, Kuntaman K, Widiastoety TH, et al. The BMJ. 2017;358:j3808. doi:10.1136/bmj.j3808

Global trends in antimicrobial use in food animals. Van  Boeckel et al. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015 May 5;112(18):5649-54. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1503141112. Epub 2015 Mar 19.

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