A bill introduced this week by Rep. Louis Slaughter (N.Y.) would require the Food and Drug Administration to withdraw the sub-therapeutic use of seven classes of antibiotics in food animals. Specifically, the Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act 2009 would target penicillins, tetracyclines, macrolides, lincosamides, streptogramins, aminoglycosides and sulfonamides.
A coalition of 20 livestock organizations is opposing the bill, which they say will cause increased animal disease and death.
Rep. Steve King (Iowa), who represents the largest pork-producing congressional district in America said, "The bill takes away a tool from farmers that they can use to prevent disease in animals. Critics of agriculture claim that feeding antibiotics to animals for 'feed efficiency' has lead to an increase in antibiotic resistant bacteria. These critics fail to grasp that 'feed efficiency' is a benefit of disease prevention. We must allow farmers to be pro-active and prevent potential debilitating, expensive illnesses from affecting their livestock."
Reprinted from USAHA News Alert