Are antibiotics still used for growth purposes in food animals?

Antibiotics for growth purposes are being phased out. In March 2014, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued Guidances 209 and 213 regarding the responsible use of medically important antibiotics in food-producing animals. Per these Guidances, farmers, veterinarians and animal pharmaceutical companies have until December 2016 to phase out growth promotion uses for medically important antibiotics in food-producing animals.

To date, all animal pharmaceutical companies have voluntarily agreed to FDA Guidances 209 and 213. Once the labels have been changed to eliminate the use of certain antibiotics for growth purposes, it will be mandatory for farmers, ranchers and veterinarians to follow the instructions outlined on the new drug labels.

USFRA Point of View

The U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) is committed to answering questions about how food is grown and raised. This includes addressing questions about antibiotic use on farms and ranches and concerns about antibiotic resistance in humans. We, too, are concerned about if or how the use of... Read more