Washington: antibiotics should work when we need them. Let’s stop their overuse.
Our food shouldn’t make us sick. But this year, some chicken did just that. People in 20 states were sickened by a Salmonella outbreak linked to Foster Farms. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention determined that these outbreak strains of Salmonella were resistant to several commonly prescribed antibiotics.
We rely on antibiotics to treat illnesses like strep throat and pneumonia, yet these medicines are used increasingly on industrial farms. Today, 80 percent of antibiotics in the US are sold for livestock use. Often, these drugs are used to help animals grow faster and withstand unsanitary, crowded conditions.
Experts believe antibiotic misuse is contributing to the spread of superbugs like those in the recent Salmonella outbreak linked to Foster Farms. Foster Farms’ CEO was reported as saying that without antibiotics, their chickens would likely get sick and even die.
When companies rely on antibiotics instead of healthier living conditions for the animals, they end up spreading antibiotic resistant bacteria and putting our health at risk.
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