Poultry farmers have been warned against using antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) and steroids to fast-track the growth of chickens.
The veterinary extension supervisor for Odzi, Inspectorate Cathrine Sakupwanya, told The Herald that some farmers were still using ARVs and steroids to boost production despite efforts to convince them to abandon the practice. She said:
There are farmers who are using ARVs, and corticosteroids so that the chickens develop faster with big muscles.
Unfortunately, unsuspecting buyers prefer the ‘huge chickens’ as compared to those that have been nurtured in the correct way and have a standard weight.
The abuse of drugs in poultry farming is causing anti-microbial resistance (AMR) which is affecting the health of humans, plants, and animals.
AMR occurs when germs that cause disease or infection in humans and animals, change and become resistant to antimicrobial medicines used for treatment.