The Farmed Animal Antimicrobial Stewardship Initiative

Antimicrobial resistance represents a global threat to human and animal health. As a result, the rules surrounding the way farmed animal owners use and access antimicrobials in Canada is changing. Among other changes, as of December 1st, 2018, a veterinary prescription will be required for the purchase of antimicrobials that are important to human medicine; meaning animal owners will have to work closely with their veterinarian to purchase and use these products – stewardship!



The Farmed Animal Antimicrobial Stewardship (FAAST) Initiative was developed in collaboration with the Ontario veterinary Medical Association, government, academic and industry partners. FAAST’s mission is to improve antimicrobial stewardship in food animals, prepare farmed animal owners and their veterinarians for upcoming policy and regulatory changes, and preserve the efficacy of antimicrobials without compromising animal health or food safety.

ACER was initially involved in the FAAST initiative as part of a two-phase approach. The first was to develop web, print, and video resources and in-class education programs for both producers and veterinarians to prepare for upcoming policy changes. The second was to work with industry to develop species-specific resources and training to promote antimicrobial stewardship.

As part of our work on FAAST, ACER has developed a comprehensive website (, which contains several information sheets (or FAASTsheets) and other interactive resources, designed specifically for veterinarian and animal owner audiences.

Along with online content, ACER have delivered a series of pilot workshops for veterinarians and animal owners. The workshops outline the need and importance of antimicrobial stewardship, the five R’s (Responsibility, Reduction, Refinement, Replacement, Review), and the upcoming changes regarding the classification of certain medications and the use of antimicrobials important in human health.

ACER is now working with industry to develop species-specific materials to help move toward better stewardship, and a reduced reliance on antimicrobials for animal health. Check out for more information or contact us at or


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Ontario Veterinary Medical Association

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