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KayDee Gilkey Importance of Antibiotic Use Highlighted to Thought Leaders
by KayDee Gilkey, click here for bio

Program: Colorado Ag Today
Date: April 24, 2017

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The responsible use of antibiotics in pork production was featured in the recent Global Ag Investing Conference in New York City. National Pork Board Chief Operating Officer John Johnson says the pork industry’s message was well received by this unique audience.

The goal was to educate industry thought leaders about the changes happening on the farm and the importance of responsible antibiotic use as Johnson explains

Johnson: “Antibiotics are a critical tool on the farm to keeping pigs healthy and healthy pigs make for safe pork. So that is a concern for all of our society. No one wants animals to suffer needlessly from disease as that is major animal welfare concern. We all want safe food. We also shared with them that the University of Arkansas has said that if we go too far in eliminating antibiotic use on the farm, that we will see a 20 percent increase in greenhouse gas emission from pork production. We also shared with them price data that should that pork that is marketed as being raised without antibiotics was over double the price of conventional pork. We posed the question, “Is it socially responsible to double the price of food, to have more animals sick or die, and to increase greenhouse gas emissions? Is that a socially responsible policy?’ So we are just trying to get people to think things through. Things are not just as simple as they appear sometimes — to just flip a switch and go a certain direction. There are repercussions and ramifications of those decisions that need to be carefully thought through. We were helping folks to understand those complexities at this meeting.”

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