When you shop the meat aisle at the grocery store, do you really know what you’re getting?
You read “all natural” and “100% beef”.. but to be truly informed we need to follow that food back to how it was raised, what it was fed, what antibiotics were administered, and how it was processed for you.
It’s easier to live being naive, but by great documentaries like Food, Inc. and the PETA website, we can now be informed about what is in the meats the FDA approves. Recently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has reneged on its plan to withdrawal approval of penicillin and tetracycline antibiotics intended for use in food-producing animal feed – a measure it has been planning since 1977.
It is said that the US uses 28.8 million pounds of antibiotics in agriculture per year. The FDA’s quiet withdrawal of their intent to ban low-dose antibiotics in animal feed means that the spread of antibiotic-resistant “super-germs” linked to this practice will continue unabated.
What does this mean for you?
You run the risk of food born sickness, you receive the antibiotic into your own body, and you do not receive the nutrients your body needs or could have with a meat that had been properly raised and processed.
Ironically, as the FDA decided the threat of antibiotic-resistant bacteria from the overuse of antibiotics in livestock was not worthy of regulatory action, yet another ground beef recall occurred in the same month, with at least 14 people becoming infected with an antibiotic-resistant strain of Salmonella lurking in the meat.
The stage is set for similar food recalls becoming increasingly common, as well as increasingly deadly, in the coming months and years, and the FDA is, as currently set up, powerless to stop it. Opinion columnist Mark Bittman said it well in the New York Times, stating why you must take the responsibility for finding high-quality, non-tainted and antibiotic-free food into your own hands:
” … the F.D.A. is consistently under-financed and increasingly unable to do its job, which is largely to protect the public health … Here’s the nut: The F.D.A. has no money to spare, but the corporations that control the food industry have all they need, along with the political power it buys. That’s why we can say this without equivocation: public health, the quality of our food, and animal welfare are all sacrificed to the profits that can be made by raising animals in factories.
Plying “healthy” farm animals (the quotation marks because how healthy, after all, can battery chickens be?) with antibiotics — a practice the EU banned in 2006 — is as much a part of the American food system as childhood obesity and commodity corn. Animals move from farm to refrigerator case in record time; banning prophylactic drugs would slow this process down, and with it the meat industry’s rate of profit. Lawmakers beholden to corporate money are not about to let that happen, at least not without a fight.”
In other parts of the world, such as the European Union, the use of antibiotics as growth promoters in animal feed has been banned for years. It’s unclear why our country hasn’t created stricter standards.
What can you do?
There are a few things you can do to guard yourself from these “super-germs” to protect your family.
- Cut down on your meat consumption, adding in more organic fruits and vegetables.
- Buy from a local, trusted farmer such as T and D Farms near Charlotte, North Carolina. Or go to www.eatwild.com and search your area for a trusted grassfed, no antibiotic farmer.
- If buying from a grocery store, look for “no-antibiotics used” label.
- Do not eat meat at restaurants unless you know where they purchase their meat.
Read more about why we only choose GrassFed, Grass Finished beef for our family by reading our blog Knowing Your Beef.
Be informed and empowered as you lead the next generation to a healthy and strong future!!