Animal Agriculture
3:47 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

Report: Lack Of Progress On Banning Antibiotics In Feed Animals Leading To Health Risk

Arkansas ranks second in the nation for broiler production, or chickens bred and raised specifically for meat production.
Arkansas ranks second in the nation for broiler production, or chickens bred and raised specifically for meat production.

A new report says Congress has killed efforts to legislate a ban on feeding farm animals antibiotics. It says that's leading to a major public health risk.

New analysis by The Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future says the Obama Administration and Congress have acted regressively in policy-making to protect public health, the environment and animal welfare.

The report comes after The Pew Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production suggested back in 2008 that many changes needed to be made to animal agriculture.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a report last month that found some 23,000 people die from antibiotic-resistant infections every year. It attributes a pandemic of superbugs to a spike in antibiotics used in meat and poultry.

Bob Martin, executive director of the Center for a Livable Future, says the commission’s worst fears have been confirmed and the recommendation to phase out and ban the non-therapeutic use of antimicrobials in food animals is not being listened to or acted upon.

Arkansas ranks second in the nation for broiler production, or chickens bred and raised specifically for meat production. The state ranks 17th in the nation for beef production, and industrial swine production is now emerging.