US - McDonald’s USA has announced a number of changes to its food sourcing policies, including delivering early on a pledge to end the use of antibiotics important to human medicine in its poultry supply chain.
McDonald’s originally set out to achieve its lower antibiotics use for chicken commitment by March 2017. Through a collaborative effort with its suppliers and farmers on a large scale, the company said it was able to bring the change into practice nearly a year ahead of schedule.
Their commitment meant that farmers still use ionophores, a class of antibiotics that are not prescribed to people, to help keep chickens healthy.
“I applaud efforts such as those undertaken by McDonald’s in close collaboration with its suppliers and poultry farmers, to greatly reduce the use of medically important antibiotics in its animal agricultural food supply chain,” commented Dr H Morgan Scott, professor of epidemiology in the Department of Veterinary Pathobiology at Texas A&M University.
“McDonald’s and its suppliers have worked to identify appropriate alternatives for sustaining broiler flock health while implementing protocols to ensure that animal welfare is not compromised.
"Sourcing decisions by industry leaders such as McDonald’s have great potential to positively influence appropriate antibiotic stewardship in food animal sectors around the world.”
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