Using antibiotics in livestock has been practiced by ranchers and farmers for decades. According to the Antibiotic Resistance Project, 29.9 million pounds of antibiotics were used in food animals in the United States during 2011. According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), 80% of all the antibiotics sold in the United States are used in farm animals—not humans. Surprisingly, these antibiotics are the same antibiotics that are used in humans to treat illnesses such as food poisoning. But these antibiotics aren’t being used to cure sick animals. Ranchers and farmers use antibiotics to accelerate the animal’s growth.
So if these are the same antibiotics that we ingest when we’re sick, what’s the big deal about consuming them in our foods? Researchers believe that, over time, bacteria living in antibiotic-fed animals will become resistant to the drugs, creating superbugs. According to the Environmental Working Group, these superbugs can trigger food borne illness and infections that are hard to treat.
Countries in the European Union and Canada have made feeding livestock antibiotics illegal. However, the United States has not banned such practices. American consumers nevertheless have been dissatisfied with these methods. A study conducted by the Natural Resources Defense Council reported that 86% of consumers polled said that meat and poultry raised without antibiotics should be available in their local supermarket. Unfortunately though, antibiotic-free meat is likely still less than 5% of the market.
Mom Made cares about feeding our families the highest quality food and we know you do too. We’re proud that all of our Mom Made Meatball Bites are made with antibiotic-free meat.