Self-proclaimed experts expounding on antimicrobial use in food animals

By Mike Apley, Beef Magazine

More and more, I run into self-proclaimed experts expounding on antimicrobial use in food animals. I don’t suggest the food-animal industry doesn’t have a few issues to deal with, but a large proportion of what I see is based on data the reporter/activist doesn’t understand or is flat-out false.

For instance, the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) put out a 2001 “report” entitled “Hogging it! Estimates of Antimicrobial Abuse in Livestock.” It’s still quoted to hugely inflate values for percent of animal antibiotics used for growth promotion and the percent of total U.S. antibiotic production used for growth promotion and in food animals in general.

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