Fast food chains limit use of antibiotics

Change could positively impact public health

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A majority of fast food chains in America are reducing their use of antibiotics in their meat products this year-particularly chicken.

This pivot towards using less antibiotics is said to help combat a recent increase in antibiotic-resistance related deaths and illnesses in America, according to the World Health Organization.

“We know that this constant use of growth-promoting antibiotics is increasing the problem of bacteria developing resistance to antibiotics and that is just a huge threat to human health right now and a growing threat and so I think that this is really smart to back of off that practice,” said Alice Callahan, part-time nutrition instructor at Lane Community College.

While over half of the 25 largest food chains in America have taken steps towards limiting their use of antibiotics 11 of them still have not, including-Dairy Queen, Sonic, Olive Garden, Applebee’s,  Domino’s, Chilis, Little Caesars, Arby’s, Ihop, Cracker Barrel and Buffalo Wild Wings.

“When we take medicine we expect it to work,” organizing director for Oregon Student Public Interest Research Group students at Lane Community College, Lucas Gutterman said. “Unfortunately this is no longer the case. We are overusing these antibiotics to breed superbugs which can cause infections that medicine can’t cure.”

The number of fast food chains who are limiting their use of antibiotics is up from last year, however, with KFC specifically making leaps towards limiting their antibiotic use. The company, one of the largest buyers of chicken in America, recently announced that it will stop using antibiotics that are important to humans in their chicken by 2018.

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