Finally, FDA Does Its Job.

You may already know The Bachelor’s Kitchen doesn’t like factory farms, the source of most of our food these days. These horrible things that have put good, family farms out of business are a tremendous threat to the quality of our food supply. They are inhumane to animals and threaten our health with poor farming practices.

Finally, the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) agrees that at least one common practice at thes factory farms is a threat to our health. The Associated Press reports the FDA is asking meat producers to use less antibiotics in its animal feed. As I suspected, those antibodies are getting into the meat and then into us.

The FDA said antibiotics in meat pose a “serious public health threat” because the drugs create antibiotic-resistant bacteria that can infect humans who eat it. The agency is recommending that producers use the drugs judiciously, limiting their use unless they are medically necessary and only using them with the oversight of a veterinarian.

Currently, feed lots routinely lace their animal feeds with high quantities of antibiotics to combat the likelihood of disease spreading like wildfire through the lots. The animals are crowded together with inadequate room to move and are standing around in several inches of feces. Funny, no one recommends changing the way we produce our food.

Of greater concern, the agency said, is when producers use antibiotics on healthy animals to speed growth and reduce feed costs. The agency is also concerned about antibiotics that are given continuously through feed or water to entire herds or flocks of animals.

Of course, the operators of those inhumane feed lots disagree with the FDA’s conclusions and plans to issue new guidelines and regulations for raising animals for food.

Sam Carney, a pork producer from Adair, Iowa, and president of the National Pork Producers Council, said reducing the amount of antibiotics given to animals could harm their health. “As we know, healthy animals produce safe food, and we need every available tool to protect animal health,” he said.

But public health advocates are equally unhappy with the FDA. They say the measures don’t go far enough. They believe strong policies are needed to maintain human health and stop the spread of antibiotic resistant disease causing bacteria.

Like so many other things from this administration, it is a step in the right direct. It’s a small step, a very small step. But at least it is finally seeing the need to protect the public rather than the profits of big business.

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