In the face of numerous reports indicating that the practice of using medically unnecessary antibiotics to bulk up farm animals is leading to millions of people getting sick each year from drug-resistant pathogens, the Food & Drug Administration drew a line in the sand today and put an end to the practi– oh wait, I meant that the FDA has politely asked drug companies to voluntarily phase out sales of these drugs to farmers.
We know this is a persistent theme here but we’ll keep repeating it until it’s well known —
The FDA and the USDA are not going to make sure you can’t buy harmful stuff. That’s not their modern role — which is really to just grease the markets in the way the feds want them to go.
Beef farmers feed cows antibiotics because (1) they get sick easily in CAFOs (giant feedlots where they stand in mud and eat corn), (2) they get sick when they eat corn instead of grass (see #1), and (2) they grow faster.
That’s not going to stop until you quit buying CAFO beef.
And THAT’s not going to happen until (1) you get yourself out of the drive through, and (2) you’re able to AFFORD grass fed beef, which may never happen, let’s face it, unless enough people demand it, and farming methods are able to go back to a grass pasture scenario instead of a feedlot. And THAT’s not going to happen any conceivable way in our lifetimes.
What can you do?
Avoid beef unless it’s grass fed. Grass fed is much leaner, has a more gamey taste you’ll have to get used to, honestly, and is more expensive. You may be able to find grass fed beef that is finished on corn, which is what our own farm beef was until it became cost prohibitive to even run a small enough beef herd to pasture them all — so we’re done, personally, with raising beef cattle, and there are no cows on our farm for the first time in at least 70 years, which is just sad. End of personal application.