During Report Stage of the Genetic Technology (Precision Breeding) Bill – which will allow for precision gene editing of plants and animals – I raised my concerns about comments made by Thérèse Coffey, the new Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, about antibiotics.

During her short stint as Health Secretary, Thérèse Coffey said she wanted to relax rules on the issuing of antibiotics, confessing that she had previously given leftover pills to friends. With growing anti-microbial resistance and the emergence of superbugs caused by the overuse of antibiotics, these comments were monumentally stupid.

Given that 66% of antibiotics are given to livestock rather than people – at a scale which puts human health at risk – it is extremely worrying that the new Secretary of State responsible for farming has such a lax attitude to antibiotic resistance.

Read: Therese Coffey criticised for giving leftover antibiotics to a friend

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