The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Opinion

November 20, 2013

Letter: Factory farms contribute to 'super bugs'

The CDC recently release a report confirming what many medical professionals have been saying for several years now, the overuse of antibiotics, especially in livestock production, is contributing to more strains of antibiotic resistant “Super Bugs." People are now warned about MRSA while our hospitals and nursing homes struggle to protect patients.

When pigs, cows or chickens are packed into warehouses by the thousands, they are given antibiotics which accumulate in meat as well as their manure. The manure is spread on fields used to grow feed, ends up in our waterways and ultimately our drinking water.

In 2011, Congress introduced the Preserve Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act or PAMTA with the goal of limiting their use in livestock so they can still be effective in treating common infections. Medical professionals have declared this week “Get Smart About Antibiotics Week” in an effort to raise awareness about this growing threat to public health. As the saying goes, “Listen to your doctor,” contact your Congress person today and urge them to do the same. Consumers are also encouraged to ask for antibiotic- and hormone-free options at their local market.

Dave Menzer

Citizens Action Coalition Education Fund

Indianapolis

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