We have already talked about the end of antibiotics here. Rampant misuse of antibiotics is leading to drug resistant strains of bacteria which cannot be treated by the antibiotics we use today. Nowhere is this misuse more common than factory farms, where far too many animals are packed into a small space and fed low doses of antibiotics in food. Recently, two headlines have made the end seem a bit closer
FDA: Not Protecting Your Interests once again
The FDA is “responsible for protecting the public health by assuring the safety, efficacy and security of… our nation’s food supply”. Or at least that’s been the line for the past few decades. The latest example in their violation of the public good has been the decision to hold back data regarding the use of antibiotics in livestock
Renewal of a program called the Animal Drug Use Fee Amendments (ADUFA) has essentially blocked access to data on antibiotics use to companies and the public. While figures have been released for 2009 and 2010, there is no detail (method of delivery for example) and no word since then. Without the data on antibiotics use, the nation is essentially kept in the dark on the issue and misuse can be carried on as it has for the past 10 years.
MRSA? Not in my Milk
The problem hasn’t only been limited to the United States either. Across the Atlantic, our friends in the UK have discovered multi drug resistant staph in milk of all places. In a study of bulk milk samples from farms in England. seven were found to contain a new strain of MRSA, ST398. For those who don’t remember, MRSA is the flesh eating bacteria responsible for more deaths than AIDS.
In the end, danger to most is fairly contained. The end consumer is protected by the process of pasteurization, which kills all bacteria, but farmers, dairy workers and veterinarians are at risk from contact. And the amount of samples tested to find the 7 was roughly 1500. What should be more concerning is the reason that this has been driven to exist in the first place.
Agribusiness against humanity
In case of both the FDA and the dairy farmers in the UK, pursuit of profits is creating massive biological threats to the human race. The demand to produce food as cheaply as possible has led the FDA to protect the use of antibiotics. Dairy farmers in England face prices so low that they can’t possibly risk their cows getting mastitis, an infection of the udder. So they continue to bomb with antibiotics and create drug resistant bacteria.
We are not going to stop capitalism. We are not going to stop the massive agribusiness concerns from protecting their political interests with massive revenues and lobbying. What we can do is prepare for a future with contaminated food and ineffective antibiotics.
It starts with homesteading and locking down your own survival foods. Being able to feed yourself over a few months if there is a scare is a staple of prepping. But in addition you can do your part to stop this madness by avoiding factory farmed meat. You vote 3 times a day with what you eat.