Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today released the following statement applauding McDonald’s announcement that it would only sell chicken raised without medically-important antibiotics, which are used to treat infections in humans:
“The tide is shifting. The largest restaurant chain in the United States has taken a huge step to eliminate unnecessary antibiotic use in chickens.
“The CDC estimates that more than 400,000 Americans contract an antibiotic-resistant foodborne infection each year, and medical experts agree that preserving the effectiveness of antibiotics is one of the most pressing public health issues we face.
“McDonald’s announcement demonstrates that businesses can be effective partners in ensuring antibiotic use in animals does not affect human health. Public health officials, businesses and farmers must address this issue, and I look forward to working with them to implement further change and combat the overuse of antibiotics in agriculture.”
Senators Feinstein and Susan Collins (R-Maine) earlier this week introduced the Prevention of Antibiotic Resistance Act, a bill to require the Food and Drug Administration to withdraw its approval of medically-important antibiotics used for disease prevention or control that are at high risk of abuse, unless the producer of the drug can demonstrate that its use in agriculture does not pose a risk to human health.