START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good
3,171,067 people care about Animal Welfare

FDA Urges Meat Industry to Reduce Antibiotic Use

FDA Urges Meat Industry to Reduce Antibiotic Use

I hate to admit it, but I’m not really that much of a health nut. I eat a lot of salty and fried foods. And I love energy drinks and coffee. I went vegan primarily for ethical reasons and so often stories about health kind of go under my radar. The one health issue that really scares me however, for whatever reason, is the threat of antibiotic resistant pathogens. The sheer amount of antibiotics that is pumped into livestock for consumption in the United States is mind boggling. And over time, consumption of small amounts of antibiotics gradually causes diseases to develop resistances to these antibiotics. It’s like giving a vaccine to the diseases themselves.

This week the FDA issued a warning about the use of antibiotics in livestock and urged meat producers to cut back on them to prevent the evolution of resistant pathogens. The industry uses antibiotics to “increase production and promote growth”, according to the LA times and the FDA wants meat producers to consult more closely with veterinarians to determine when it is prudent to use antibiotics and which ones to use.

This urging by the FDA takes the same middle-of-the-road route that generally comes from mainstream organizations like the FDA. It stated the truth, made recommendations, but fell short of actually taking real action. The meat industry is up in arms saying the FDA is burdening their production with unnecessary recommendations and making the false claim that there are no definitive studies linking the consumption of antibiotics in food to resistant bacteria.

The recommendations however are a disappointment to the Union of Concerned Scientists who were hoping for more serious restrictions on the use of antibiotics in livestock. Margaret Mellon of the Union correctly stated that the meat industry will not take action voluntarily.

The fact of the matter is that as much as we abhor the terrible practices of the livestock industry — like their overuse of antibiotics — the only way they can produce meat to meet the demands of the American population is through such means. Animal agriculture on this scale is by nature completely unsustainable and we are only wasting time by trying to reform an industry that cannot function without using the most wasteful, unethical and unhealthy business practices.

If the FDA recommendations do any good, it will be through convincing the average American that a diet free of animal products is not just good for the animals, it’s also good for their own health.

How many more reports of this nature do we have to see before people on a large scale start to realize how terrible the animal agriculture industry truly is?

Read more: , , , , ,

Photo: rbrwr via flickr

quick poll

vote now!

Loading poll...

have you shared this story yet?

some of the best people we know are doing it


+ add your own
9:21AM PST on Jan 1, 2013

Thank you for sharing.

12:40PM PDT on Jul 14, 2012


12:38PM PST on Feb 26, 2012

Since when does a warning by the FDA do anything at all...make it the law.

5:16PM PDT on Jun 17, 2011

I don't eat meat anymore.
Thank you Mac.

5:19AM PDT on Apr 16, 2011

scary, very scary

9:14AM PST on Feb 2, 2011

Very scary. I am defaintly cutting down my family's meat consumpstion. Antibiotics are vast becoming a problem and no longer the solution.

4:31PM PDT on Aug 13, 2010

There are so many people in this world that we have to pump antibiotics (and hormones) into animals so we can eat?! Pretty disturbing.

2:39PM PDT on Aug 5, 2010

I am not worried for myself as I am a vegetarian. I am worried for my meat-eating friends.

4:09PM PDT on Jul 15, 2010

Well if they stopped eating meat they would not have to worry.

5:54PM PDT on Jul 13, 2010

Let's hope they listen.

add your comment

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

Care2 - Be Extraordinary - Start a Care2 Petition
ads keep care2 free

Recent Comments from Causes

Not fast enough to escape Sea World and company, unfortunately.

Too weird. They should go after the illegal drug sellers, not shops that are obeying the law.

ads keep care2 free

Select names from your address book   |   Help

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.