Monday, March 09, 2015

FDA study finds some dairy farmers illegally use antibiotics in ways that evade detection

Some farmers are getting away with improperly treating dairy cows with antibiotics not detected by routine tests, says a report of a study by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Dan Charles writes for NPR. Because antibiotics are not supposed to be administered to dairy cows under any circumstance, the tests are not designed to detect them.

The FDA study, which looked for 31 different drugs in samples of milk from almost 2,000 dairy farms, found just over 1 percent of the samples from the targeted farms—farms that had come under suspicion for sending cows to slaughter that turned out to have drug residues in their meat—and 0.4 percent of randomly collected samples, contained drug residues, Charles writes. A total of 12 drugs were found, none of which are approved for use in lactating dairy cows. Because the samples were collected anonymously for research purposes, FDA can't send investigators to the farms. (Read more)

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