Representative Henry Waxman (D-CA) has announced plans to introduce legislation to monitor the use of antibiotics in animals. The bill is called “Delivering Antibiotic Transparency in Animals (DATA) Act” and will provide information to the FDA about the amounts and types of antibiotics routinely fed to animals in subtherapeutic amounts.
We’ve told you about this issue before. In fact, Dr. Margaret Chan, director general of the World Health Organization has stated that antibiotic resistance could “end modern medicine as we know it.” The Center for Science in the Public Interest research has found that outbreaks caused by antibiotic resistant bacteria are increasing. Research by the Translational Genomics Research Institute has found that antibiotic-resistant bacteria MRSA developed that resistance in animals raised for food.
Rep. Waxman said, “we need reliable information about the use of antibiotics in agricultural operations. The more we learn, the graver the treat becomes from overuse of antibiotics by industrial-scale farms. We need this information so scientists and Congress can stop the spread of drug-resistant infections from farm animals to humans.” The bill will require drug manufacturers to tell the FDA how their drugs are used on farms, and will require reporting by feed mills. Almost all of the antibiotic use on farms comes through feed mixed with antibiotics in subtherapeutic levels.