NFU slams Soil Association over antibiotics claims

The NFU has launched a scathing attack on the Soil Association over claims the organisation has made about antimicrobial resistance.

Kevin Pearce, NFU head of food and farming, has accused the organic certification group of having a “complete lack of understanding about the use of antibiotics on farms”.

The comments came after the Soil Association issued a press release warning “deadly antibiotic-resistant E coli and salmonella superbugs” were widespread on British farms.

It warned that scientists attending a VLA conference on Thursday (23 Sept) were set to “reveal shocking new levels of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in intensively reared farm animals that have the potential to spread to humans”.

The claims were reported by newspapers such as the Daily Mail .

Mr Pearce said the VLA Conference was the ideal forum for scientists, vets and industry representatives to come together to hear about new developments and understanding in the fields of veterinary medicine research.

But he accused the Soil Assocation of trying to hijack the event to pursue its own agenda.

“This is a cynical attack designed to wreck consumer confidence in the wider food market.”