Earth Eats: Real Food, Green Living

Drug-Resistant Bugs Prompt Shift To Organic Meat In Hospitals

Concern about antibiotic resistance has prompted the pledges of more than 300 U.S. hospitals to stop serving meat raised with antibiotics.

Petri dish

Photo: PNNL - Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (flickr)

The Centers for Disease Control estimate about 60,000 deaths each year are due to drug-resistant microbes.

Last week, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce held the third in a series of hearings addressing the increasing dangers of antibiotic resistance. This debate emphasized the overuse of antibiotics on farms.

Ten healthcare, veterinary health, and public health officials testified at the hearing in support of legislation to regulate the non-therapeutic use of antibiotics in food-producing animals.

Principal Deputy Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration Joshua Sharfstein cited an FDA report concluding that unchecked antibiotic use in animals is not in the best interest of public health.

The non-profit coalition Health Care Without Harm presented the subcommittee with a petition signed by over 1,000 physicians and other healthcare professionals supporting the regulatory legislation.

Concern about antibiotic resistance has prompted the pledges of more than 300 U.S. hospitals to stop serving meat raised with antibiotics.

The Centers for Disease Control estimate about 60,000 deaths each year are due to drug-resistant microbes.

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Megan Meyer

Megan Meyer was in the company of foodies for most of her formative years. She spent all of her teens working at her town's natural food co-op in South Dakota, and later when she moved to Minneapolis, worked as a produce maven for the nation's longest running collectively-managed food co-op. In 2006, she had the distinct pleasure (and pain) of participating the vendanges, or grape harvest, in the Beaujolais terroire of France, where she developed her compulsion to snip off grape clusters wherever they may hang. In the spring of 2008, Megan interned on NPR's Science Desk in Washington, D.C., where she aided in the coverage of science, health and food policy stories. She joined Indiana Public Media in June, 2009.

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