Burger Chains | Antibiotics Use

Burger King's Whopper sandwich

Burger King's Whopper sandwich

Wendy's received a D minus after sourcing 15% of its beef from suppliers that use less tylosin, a key antibiotic.

Halloran says the commercial beef industry faces particular hurdles that make it challenging to reduce its antibiotic use. Only two chains - Shake Shack and BurgerFi - scored A's for serving antibiotic-free beef.

Despite these challenges, burger chains can limit antibiotic use in their beef supply chain, says Lena Brook, M.E.S., interim director for food and agriculture at the Natural Resources Defense Council.

McDonald's, Burger King, White Castle and Five Guys are among the chains with failing grades. As the report points out, per CNN, "overuse of antibiotics in livestock production significantly contributes to the spread of antibiotic resistance". "If they want to eat meat raised with responsible antibiotic use practices, chicken is the best choice at many mainstream chains", Brook said.

According to the report, Fuddruckers, Steak 'n Shake and Farmer Boys have no antibiotic polices, but they offer a burger option made of beef raised without antibiotics.

Each year in the US, at least 23,000 people die and 2 million get sick with antibiotic-resistant infections, according to statistics from the CDC.

In a statement, McDonald's spokesperson Lauren Altmin said "preserving the effectiveness of antibiotics for future generations is highly important" to the company.

The report urges chains and lawmakers to take action.

"By continuing to use antibiotics routinely on farms, beef producers contribute to the rise and spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria like this type of Salmonella, which cause infections that are hard or sometimes impossible to treat", Brook wrote in a blog post accompanying the report.

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