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Antibiotic tainted beef illegally sold for human consumption

Thursday, September 02, 2010 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
Tags: beef, antibiotics, health news

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(NaturalNews) The conventional U.S. food supply is no stranger to chemicals, pesticides, growth hormones and antibiotics. But a Michigan dairy has violated what minimal restrictions do exist concerning these additives by illegally selling antibiotic-ridden dairy cows to be processed for human consumption over the last eight years.

Scenic View Dairy of Hamilton, Mich., is currently the subject of a complaint filed by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) on behalf of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for selling beef that tested positive for illegal levels of neomycin, penicillin and sulfadimethoxine. The FDA is seeking a permanent injunction against the dairy for ignoring multiple warnings about the tainted meat.

According to reports, the FDA has warned Scenic View Dairy at least eight times since 2001 about unsafe levels of antibiotics in its beef, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has sent more than 11 letters concerning the issue as well. But the defendants have ignored all such warnings given between 2002 and 2010 and have continued to sell the beef anyway.

FDA regulations specify that in order to sell meat for human consumption, the animals have to be off antibiotics and other drugs for a certain period of time in order for the substances to clear from their systems. But Scenic View Dairy's three farms have allegedly been selling them off long before the proper time.

"One-half of all antibiotics in the United States are used in livestock--25 million pounds a year," explains D. Lindsey Berkson in her book Hormone Deception. "[A]ntibiotics can contribute to hormone-disruptor exposure as well as contribute to antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria."

It is unclear to what extent the tainted meat has affected the public, but the case is just one more reason for meat eaters to purchase only organic, grass-fed meat.

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