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16 September 2014
Farmaceuticals: A Reuters Investigation
September 15, 2014

Major Poultry Farms Routinely Feed Antibiotics To Chickens

The manner in which drugs are being given to poultry shows that “this could be an even larger piece of the antibiotic-resistance problem than I had thought.”
- Donald Kennedy, former FDA commissioner

Veterinarian holding chicks.

Photo: REUTERS/Max Whittaker

Reuters reviewed more than 320 documents generated by six major poultry companies during the past two years. Called “feed tickets,” the documents are issued to chicken growers by the mills that make feed to poultry companies’ specifications. They list the names and grams per ton of each “active drug ingredient” in a batch of feed. They disclose the FDA-approved purpose of each medication. And they specify which stage in a chicken’s roughly six-week life the feed is meant for.

The feed tickets examined represent a fraction of the tens of thousands issued annually to poultry farms run by or for major producers. The confidential information they contain nonetheless extends well beyond what the U.S. government knows. Veterinary use of antibiotics is legal and has been rising for decades. But U.S. regulators don’t monitor how the drugs are administered on the farm – in what doses, for what purposes, or for how long. Made public here for the first time, the feed documents thus provide unique insight into how some major players use antibiotics. Read the report:
Reuters investigation: farmaceuticals report


Karen Davis commented on the Reuters Investigation on The Huffington Post

Thank you for this informative report. I have written about all of this and more in my book Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs: An Inside Look at the Modern Poultry Industry (1996; revised & updated 2009). The poultry industry cannot be cleaned up either physically or ethically. It can only be rejected by people who have compassion for these poor birds and who truly care about what they put into their bodies. Misery is NOT a health food and no creatures on the planet are more miserable and abused than chickens and turkeys.
Karen Davis, PhD
President of United Poultry Concerns
www.upc-online.org

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