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Antibiotic stewardship and its implications for agricultural animal-human relationships: Insights from an intensive dairy farm in England

Helliwell, Richard; Morris, Carol; Raman, Sujatha

Authors

Richard Helliwell

Sujatha Raman



Abstract

The concept of antibiotic stewardship has recently gained prominence in UK and EU policy and practice as part of wider efforts to reduce antibiotic use in agriculture and respond to concerns about antimicrobial resistance. The purpose of the paper is to provide initial insights into what antibiotic stewardship might mean in practice for agricultural animal-human relationships, particularly within intensive systems. We do this by firstly outlining the anticipated implications for agricultural animals by different stakeholders. Secondly, we develop the concept of heterogeneous biosocial collectivities through engagement with the literatures on care and thirdly we apply this concept to one case study (intensive dairy) farm to explore empirically how animal-human relationships are changing in response to antibiotic stewardship. Three on-farm heterogeneous biosocial collectivities are identified, each of which coheres around a particular problem of life associated with distinctive practices of care and antibiotic use resulting in collectivity specific responses to antibiotic stewardship. These collectivities are: the calf collectivity and the problem of immunodeficient life; the milking cow collectivity and the problem of ‘stoic’ life; the dry cow collectivity and the problem of fatigued life. In conclusion we point to: the uneven effects for animal-human relationships of changes in antibiotic use including in particular practices of care and their consequences; an intensification of human control over animals with variable implications for their health and welfare. The analysis raises questions for future research, in particular the need to test the assumption that reducing antibiotic use will stimulate systemic change in intensive animal agriculture towards sustainable, highwelfare, and more extensive systems of production.

Citation

Helliwell, R., Morris, C., & Raman, S. (2020). Antibiotic stewardship and its implications for agricultural animal-human relationships: Insights from an intensive dairy farm in England. Journal of Rural Studies, 78, 447-456. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jrurstud.2020.07.008

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jul 15, 2020
Online Publication Date Jul 25, 2020
Publication Date Aug 1, 2020
Deposit Date Jul 29, 2020
Publicly Available Date Jul 26, 2022
Journal Journal of Rural Studies
Print ISSN 0743-0167
Electronic ISSN 1873-1392
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 78
Pages 447-456
DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jrurstud.2020.07.008
Keywords Antimicrobial resistance, antibiotic stewardship, animal-human relationships, intensive agriculture, heterogeneous biosocial collectivities, care
Public URL https://nottingham-repository.worktribe.com/output/4794136
Publisher URL https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0743016720300590
Additional Information This article is maintained by: Elsevier; Article Title: Antibiotic stewardship and its implications for agricultural animal-human relationships: Insights from an intensive dairy farm in England; Journal Title: Journal of Rural Studies; CrossRef DOI link to publisher maintained version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jrurstud.2020.07.008; Content Type: article; Copyright: © 2020 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

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Publisher Licence URL
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/





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