DEC. 11, 2013
By: Peter Gray
The FDA wants to phase out antibiotics in meat.
Regulators released abroad plan Wednesday, designed to prevent meat producers from using drugs that are also used to treat sick humans. That means some changes Midwest farmers and ranchers will have to get used to.
The new FDA guidelines ask pharmaceutical companies to stop marketing drugs humans need as helping pigs and cattle grow faster.
Regulators also introduced a proposal that would require veterinarians to have more oversight on drugs administered at the farm.
Jim Lowe practices veterinary medicine in ten states. He told Harvest Public Media when it comes to the reporting requirements the FDA is still working out with stakeholders, the “the devil’s in the details”, but believes many producers and veterinarians are already on board with the changes.
“To purchase an antibiotic and include it in the feed, there’s going to need to be some documentation and formal relationship between veterinarian, client and patient,” Lowe said. “So if there’s no veterinary involvement today, that needs to happen.”
The government is making its guidelines “voluntary,” but says companies may face regulatory action if they don’t follow suit.
This article is brought to you in collaboration between The Gazette and Harvest Public Media.
Harvest Public Media is a reporting collaboration of several Midwestern public media stations, including Iowa Public Radio.
Harvest's multimedia work — appearing on radio, TV, and in print and online outlets — explores issues related to food and food production.
For more information go to: HarvestPublicMedia.org.