Lawmakers scrutinize antibiotics

Two state bills target drugs’ use in animals

In the United States, animals—mostly healthy livestock and poultry—receive 70 percent of all antibiotics. At the same time, some health officials have suggested the increased use of antibiotics is affecting human resistance to various illnesses.

In California, that could change if state Assemblyman Kevin Mullin (D-South San Francisco) is successful in passing Assembly Bill 1437, which would ban the use of antibiotics in animals for weight-gain purposes, according to a recent California Report article.

Currently, there is no regulation on the use of the drugs, though the U.S. Food and Drug Administration did recently request that pharmaceutical companies stop marketing the growth benefits of antibiotics in animals.

Another state bill, Senate Bill 835, would make the FDA request mandatory in California. Both face scrutiny by agriculture interests.