Consumer rights advocates and health professionals are calling on the Obama administration to restrict the use of antibiotics on healthy factory farm animals, saying the “overuse and misuse” of antibiotics generates bacteria that are resistant to one or more classes of drugs.
“Bacteria is getting resistant to these antibiotics they’re using at factory farms, and the bacteria is then being passed to our community through the air we breathe, through water, through animal waste and through the food we eat,” said Dev Gowda, of the consumer advocacy group, Illinois PIRG. “President Obama and the FDA need to take action and essentially save antibiotics for future generations.”
If lawmakers are interested in cutting costs during the
2013 reauthorization of the farm bill, they should reduce wasteful
spending on subsidies that support processed food additives and already
profitable agribusiness corporations, according to members of the
consumer advocacy group, U.S. PIRG.
“The way our subsidies are
distributed right now is a strong example of how skewed our system is,”
said Dani Neuharth-Keusch, assistant community outreach director for Illinois PIRG, who spoke at a press conference Tuesday to release the nationwide research group’s new report, “Apples to Twinkies 2013.”
Federally subsidized crop insurance is intended to help farmers manage
the risk inherent to their business. According to the report, the
current farm bill, enacted in 2008, fails to “appropriately direct
federal dollars” with subsidies that “mirror a pattern of special
“We need to push back against subsidies
skewed toward big agribusiness and inadequate subsides for fresh
produce,” said Neuharth-Keusch.