A PBS Frontline special explored the safety of our meat.
- Antibiotics are given to animals in small doses to enhance weight gain by as much as 3%.
- There are an estimated 17 million pounds of antibiotics used for this purpose each year in the USA.
- Many countries in the European Union and Canada have banned the use of antibiotics for this purpose. It is still legal in the USA.
- People who developed Cipro-resistant bacteria had acquired them by eating pork that were contaminated with salmonella.
- 192 people were infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella from five states. 30 were hospitalized.
- Salmonella was multidrug resistant including resistance to ampicillin, streptomycin, sulfisoxazole, and tetracycline.
And antibiotic resistant strains of E.Coli. E. Coli is often found in contaminated red meats.
The Centers for Safety in the Public Interest notes:
- Food items most likely associated with antibiotic resistant pathogens include dairy products, ground beef, and poultry.
- Salmonella was the most common cause of antibiotic‐resistant outbreaks.
- Numerous studies have documented direct transference of antibiotic‐resistant bacteria from animals to humans.
- Quantities of antibiotics being sold for use in food‐producing animal species was increasing.
As a physician, I am especially concerned about the abuse of antibiotics, the fear of resistant strains of pathologic bacteria and the inability to treat sick patients when needed.
I offer my support and plea to reduce the unnecessary use of antibiotics wherever we can. Preserve these life saving drugs for patients who need them.