Are antibiotics in meat the new battleground in food? A new report released by six consumer interest, public health, and environmental organizations may represent the first serious shots fired. The report grades restaurant chains about their antibiotic usage. Some did very well. Others did quite poorly.
Why all the fuss about antibiotics though? The concern is that germs may develop resistance to antibiotics used in the food industry, many of which are the same kind used in people. Already at least 2 million people contract an antibiotic-resistant infection every year in the US and 23,000 die according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC and the World Health Organization have repeatedly warned about the dangers of antibiotic resistance.
The report, called “Chain Reaction” ranked some restaurant chains very highly in their avoidance of antibiotic-treated meat in their supply chains. The top marks went to Chipotle and Panera Bread. Chick-fil-A scored high as well. They have been transitioning to antibiotic-free chicken since 2014, but the process is taking a long time because they want to get certified.
However, nearly every other restaurant in the list got minimal or no positive marks on their avoidance of antibiotics in their meat products. You can read the list in the linked article.
Will your grill see more antibiotic-free meat soon? If the reports are true that antibiotic treated animals cause more superbugs to appear, it may be worth your while to look into antibiotic-free suppliers.