Report sounds alarm on superbugs found in Australian supermarket salmon and beef

Antibiotic resistant bacteria have been found in Australian supermarket beef and Tasmanian farmed salmon. You can help stop the rise of superbugs.

A report into bacteria contained in samples of red meat and salmon in major Australian supermarkets, commissioned by World Animal Protection, found some bacteria was often able to resist antibiotics, including antibiotics used for human medicine.

The proportion of resistant bacteria in the meat samples was 53%, virtually indistinguishable from the proportion of resistant bacteria in wastewater samples, sitting at 58%.

Globally, the rise of superbugs presents one of the biggest human health challenges of our time. Superbugs are responsible for 1.3 million human deaths a year, a figure that is projected to rise to 10 million by 2050.

Without effective antibiotics, we could be sent back to the dark ages of medicine, where common infections kill us once again. Several lifesaving procedures we take for granted could be compromised. This includes procedures and treatments like chemotherapy, heart bypass surgery, hip and joint replacements, organ transplants, dialysis, or caesarean delivery.

Bacteria in the beef and salmon samples from supermarkets across Melbourne, were often able to resist antibiotics, including those used to treat human infections. It’s time to sound the alarm on superbugs.


Cattle in feedlots

Image credit: Carla Gottgens/Bloomberg via Getty Images