It is already the fourth time that such a plan is being discussed.
However, the change that the plan is being adopted this time is bigger than ever
before, because the Democrates (who have the majority in the Congress) are more
pro biological farming than their opposites; the
Although being adopted by Senator Edward Kennedy among
others, the bill only wants to
phase out seven antibiotics, all very close to antibiotics that are being used in
human medicine. For that reason, medical professionals applaud the proposals.
70% of the antibiotics used in poultry, pigs and beef cattle is
used as growth promoter instead of medicine according to data from the Union of
Concerned Scientist. The writers of the bill therefore want to reduce the
unnecessary use of these large amounts of antibiotics.
from the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy in Minneapolis also points
out another point in the bill. When the bill will be implemented, the antibiotic
use in US livestock farming needs to be recorded. This has never been done
before and could be the reason why farmers are not so positive about this
NPPC is against
Although doctors seem to like the
idea, the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) is strongly against the new
bill. The measures are too extreme and limit the management practices of the pig
farmers, according to David Warner, spokes person of the
According to Warner, in feed antibiotics are not used on a
large scale by pig producers. "The antibiotics are expensive and therefore the
farmers try to reduce the use of these medicines", says Warner.
pigs are healthy, the pig farmer would not spend thousands of dollars on
antibiotics", he adds.
He agrees that antibiotics are used as a
preventive measure, "but that is normally only for a short period and on a very
low scale", Warner commented. He also addressed that the amount of antibiotics
use for sick animals is more than the use of antibiotics in the
After the antibiotic ban in Denmark, the curative use of
antibiotics increased from 57,300 kilo to 112,650 kilo.
â€¢ National Pork Producers
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