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70% of the antibiotics used in the US is in the food industry

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Old 09-18-2009, 01:03 PM   #1
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Default 70% of the antibiotics used in the US is in the food industry

I knew antibiotics were widely used in the food industry but wow. I've also known recently (last 10-15 years), we have been told to only use antibiotics when absolutely necessary due to the fact we are creating resistant strains of bacteria. Of course it doesn't matter what we do personally if the industry continues on its merry way as the bacteria strains will affect everyone.

This is an interesting article from the Washington Post about the situation:

"The heavy reliance on routine antibiotic use is a byproduct of the way we raise animals for food: packed into dim and dirty enclosures where they live amid their own filth, eat food that they haven't evolved to digest, and are pretty much stacked atop one another. Most human beings I know can hardly spend three hours on a plane without contracting a case of the sniffles.

When you give antibiotics to animals meant to become food, however, you're ensuring that antibiotics end up in the food in low but constant doses. That means bacteria are getting more accustomed to the antibiotics. There's good reason to think that this background exposure to antibiotics is contributing to the startling rise in antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Everything from staph to strep to salmonella is exhibiting uncommon resilience in the face of our latest drugs. A 2003 World Health Organization study (PDF) put it pretty starkly: "There is clear evidence of the human health consequences [from agricultural use of antibiotics, including] infections that would not have otherwise occurred, increased frequency of treatment failures (in some cases death) and increased severity of infections." Even stronger was the title of a 2001 New England Journal of Medicine editorial: "Antimicrobial Use in Animal Feed -- Time to Stop." "

The entire article is available here:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...091500736.html
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Old 09-19-2009, 11:39 PM   #2
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Oh wow, I didn't know the numbers were that high either. Very interesting article, thanks for posting it. It's just terrible all the way around. I never heard of Staph growing up. It was just one of those rare things. Now we have hospitals over run with it. I think for some people, they won't realize the consequences until they've been face to face with it. Scary!
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Old 09-20-2009, 12:21 AM   #3
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The media has not helped. Over the past ten years or so, the antibacterial disinfectant/bleach/hand sanitizer/wipes/tissues/disposable mop/etc use has become rampant. People are led to believe that they WILL become ill unless they use these products, and like lambs to the slaughter they buy this crap up. We will be forced to lie in the bed that's been made because of this as well as the food industry.

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Old 09-20-2009, 12:30 AM   #4
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I take care of multiple patients a day with MRSA...very common and scary.
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Old 09-22-2009, 11:40 PM   #5
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This makes me so angry. It's such a simple thing to fix in the way we raise animals for food, but people are so greedy it's not getting done....
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Old 09-28-2009, 05:17 AM   #6
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I hope more ppl become educated and act by buying grass-fed chicken, cattle, and by-products.
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Old 09-28-2009, 05:37 AM   #7
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Thanks for posting an eye opening article. I made the decision over a year ago that if I was going to consume meat, I would purchase it responsibly.

I buy Coleman organic chicken from Costco, and purchase my beef from a local rancher. I have also cut down consumption quite a bit. If I am at the local grocery and am debating because of price, I will either buy a smaller quantity, or not buy at all, rather than buy chix from the large factory farms.
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Old 09-28-2009, 10:37 AM   #8
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It might also have alot to do with covering their butts so that they won't get sued when people get sick from their product.
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Old 09-30-2009, 04:12 AM   #9
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It is also important to be sure your grass-fed beef is "finished off" with grass as well.
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