National AMU database for pigs


Ireland’s new national AMU database for pigs is launched in November 2019 by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM). Under Bord Bia’s Farm Quality Assurance standards for pigs, all pig herd owners who slaughter more than 200 pigs per year will be required to submit their antibiotic usage information to DAFM.

Data collection

Animal (sub)categories: Piglet, weaner-grower, finisher or breeding pig.

Input: Herd keepers are required to submit, on a quarterly basis, the usage information on all antibiotics used in-feed, orally by routes other than in-feed as well as injectables. This is obtained either from their own usage records and/or from data on medicated feed delivered (for example from feed mills).

Analysis, benchmarking and reporting

The data will be presented as the overall annual amount of antibiotic active ingredient used (in kg or tonnes) as well as the overall amount of critically important antibiotics (CIAs) used on farm. This is then compared with the population at risk of treatment to create a mg/kg usage figure. The EMA PCU guidelines will be followed, assigning a weight of 65 kg for slaughter pigs and 240 kg for sows.

It is envisaged that once enough data has been gathered this will allow DAFM to establish an average figure for AMU on Irish pig farms and use this information to compare AMU between similar sized farms in the same production category and feed this information back to the farmers themselves.

Data collected will be used to produce an anonymised aggregated antibiotic usage figure for Irish pigs in line with ESVAC requirements. Farmers will receive a report detailing antibiotic usage levels on their own farm for each active substance used as well as an overall figure in mg/kg of pig meat produced.