McDonald’s US business has announced the completion of its commitment to “only serve chicken not treated with antibiotics important to human medicine” nearly one year ahead of schedule.
The global fast food chain originally set out to achieve its antibiotics chicken commitment by March 2017. Now, however, following a “collaborative effort” with its suppliers and farmers on a large scale, the company says it has been able to make the change a reality
“Now every chicken item McDonald’s serves (in the US) is made from chicken not treated with antibiotics important to human medicine,” said the company, adding that this includes Chicken McNuggets.
The company’s announcement also featured a welcoming comment from Texas A&M University’s Dr H Morgan Scott, professor of epidemiology in the Department of Veterinary Pathobiology, who said that McDonald’s and its suppliers had 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,” he added.
The McDonald’s statement also revealed, however, that farmers can still use ionophores, a class of antibiotics that are not prescribed to people, to help keep chickens healthy.