As I was in the Dallas airport and a news program had a teaser piece about antibiotics in our food. Of course my ears perked up and I had to hear what they were talking about. I am a mom and a livestock producer so I’m very tuned in to the regulations that we as farmers abide by for the health of our animals and the safety of the food we produce. The news segment was about seven seconds long and all it stated was that there is a concern among consumers about antibiotics being in our meats and consumers want to know if antibiotics were used in the food they are eating.
All this segment did in my opinion was make a claim and then provide no facts for either side to go along with the claim. Livestock producers follow strict guidelines to what medicine can be given IF needed, where on the animal to administer the medicine and at what point it can be given to an animal before it would enter our food system. This is all done with the supervision and approval of veterinarians.
What I would have loved to hear on this television segment is more about the great lengths that are taken from farmers and ranchers to make sure that the protein we buy is safe, healthy and nutritious. Antibiotics are used to make sure animals live healthy, quality lives while also producing healthy, quality foods. If concerned about antibiotic use, talk to a farmer/rancher and ask them how antibiotics use fits in on their farm. Because we live in the U.S. we have a variety of food options, some being labeled organic. You need to make the decision that aligns best with your food and family value system and budget. What a good feeling it is to be able to make food choices and have options courtesy of hard working American farmers.
Here some great links to gain more insight.