|Wall Street Journal photo by Melissa Golden|
Fear has grown that "heavy antibiotic use raises the risk that dangerous bacteria could evolve to resist antibiotics that normally kill them, reducing the effectiveness of medicines that for decades have been a key health defense," Bunge writes. "Perdue’s campaign to stop using antibiotics to raise the roughly 13 million chickens the Salisbury, Md., company processes each week follows concerns raised by U.S. and international health officials about the widespread use of antibiotics in both human and animal medicine."
In 2013 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration "called on animal drugmakers to stop permitting the use of antibiotics to speed up animal growth," Bunge writes. Companies agreed to comply by 2017.