- The White House held a summit, the Forum on Antibiotic Stewardship, with food producers and others interested parties to discuss antibiotic resistance and superbugs, which are becoming a growing concern for consumers.
- The Obama administration is the first to tackle antibiotics overuse, reports The New York Times.
- "Many federal cafeterias will start serving meat and poultry from animals raised with fewer antibiotics in an effort to halt increases in antibiotic-resistant bacteria," USA Today reported. This will happen over five years.
The Food and Drug Administration made its own announcement concerning how farmers can obtain medically-important antibiotics for food animals via veterinarians. "The rule requires farmers to obtain a prescription from a veterinarian to give antibiotics to their animals and instructs veterinarians to follow state guidelines. Until recently, farmers were free to buy antibiotics with little or no oversight," according to The New York Times,
Some meat producers and suppliers are resistant to the changes in antibiotics policy while other companies have taken the initiative to remove antibiotics from their meat. While beef, turkey, and pork suppliers have been slower to adopt such practices, the poultry industry, including companies like Tyson Foods and Pilgrim's Pride, have already taken the steps to remove some or certain types of antibiotics from their meat.
Food industry groups like the North American Meat Institute have provided support for "ongoing and future research for therapeutic options and further understanding how antimicrobial resistance is developed and transmitted among humans, animals, and other living organisms" as well as "research that reduced and ultimately eliminated multidrug-resistant pathogens from meat and poultry products," said NAMI President and CEO Barry Carpenter. This research could lead to discoveries for better ways to manage certain issues livestock producers face without having to use antibiotics as often or at all.