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How Big Pharma’s industrial waste is fuelling the rise in superbugs worldwide

Pharmaceutical companies are fuelling the rise of superbugs by manufacturing drugs in factories that leak industrial waste, says a new report which calls on them to radically improve their supply chains.

Factories in China and India – where the majority of the world’s antibiotics are produced – are releasing untreated waste fluid containing active ingredients into surrounding areas, highlights the report by a coalition of environmental and public health organisations.

Ingredients used in antibiotics get into the local soil and water systems, leading to bacteria in the environment becoming resistant to the drugs. They are able to exchange genetic material with other nearby germs, spreading antibiotic resistance around the world, the report claims.

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