For years, we’ve heard health experts and consumers alike express their concern that the consumption of beef, pork and chicken treated with antibiotics could lead to antibiotic-resistant infections in humans. McDonald’s has now taken a step to address those concerns. The company announced that over the next 2 years it will stop purchasing chicken that has been fed antibiotics also prescribed for humans.
Mike Andres, the U.S. president of McDonald’s, explains: “Our customers want food that they feel great about eating all the way from the farm to the restaurant. These moves take a step toward better delivering on those expectations.”
Since McDonald’s is one of the biggest buyers of chicken in the U.S., how will its decision impact other fast food companies? Christoper Muller, a hospitality professor at Boston University, is quoted as saying: “It will change things for everyone.”
The director of the Natural Resources Defense Council, Jonathan Kaplan, had this reaction: “This is a landmark announcement in the fight to keep lifesaving antibiotics working for us and our children. Hopefully this is just a start–the Big Mac and McRib will be next.”
But it should be noted that a Senior Vice President for McDonald’s, Marion Gross, says the company will still be buying chicken from suppliers that use a particular type of antibiotic not given to humans.
How important is it to you that the food you eat is free of antibiotics?