Antibiotics in meat

565 Words3 Pages
“Misuse of antibiotics could result in selection for resistant bacteria”. This gentle warning mentioned by the inventor of antibiotics, Sir Alexander Fleming, seems to have lost its meaning over the course of years. Antimicrobial resistance is a growing public health concern; antibiotics used in factory farmed animals raised for human consumption contributes to this problem. Scientific evidence confirms that by the consumption of meat that contains antibiotic-resistant microbes, some antibiotic resistant bacteria are transferred from animals to humans ("GAO"). Factory farming has its benefits, but issues arise due to the overuse of antibiotics in factory-farmed animals, and this essay aims to propose a solution by analyzing Denmark’s successful antibiotic banning policies.
Factory farming is a necessary component of our modern food production and supply system. In 2005, the U.S. produced 45.7 billion pounds of red meat. It efficiently produces and distributes huge quantities of food to feed the growing population of America. But the overfeeding of antibiotics in the U.S. meat industry has gotten to the extreme and it calls for a drastic change in order to prevent a potential public health crises.
When bacteria are frequently exposed to antibiotics it can become resistant to the drug so that it is no longer effective in treating a specific illness (Visser). To compensate for unhygienic environments and to accelerate growth, antibiotics are often given to food animals in the U.S. In 2011, 29.9 million pounds of antibiotics were sold in America for meat and poultry production ("Record"). Many of the types of antibiotics used in food animal production is also used in human medicine, and according to the WHO, “widespread use of antim...

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"Record-High Antibiotic Sales for Meat and Poultry Production." The Pew Charitable Trust, 6 Feb. 2013. Web. 20 May 2014. .

Rogers, Laura. "What Can Danish Hogs Teach Us About Antibiotics?." The Huffington Post., 13 Oct. 2009. Web. 23 May 2014. .

Visser, Nick. "After Fears Of Antibiotic Resistance, 25 Drug Companies To Phase Out Use In Livestock." The Huffington Post., 27 Mar. 2014. Web. 20 May 2014. .
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