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Tyson Foods Inc , the largest U.S. poultry producer, plans to eliminate the use of human antibiotics in its chicken flocks by September 2017 - one of the most aggressive timelines yet set by an American poultry company.
The Arkansas-based chicken and meat giant also said it is working on ways to curtail such on-farm drug practices at its other protein businesses, which include pork and beef. The move marks the latest push by the livestock and food industries to reduce the use of antibiotics crucial to human health in meat production.
Authorities are concerned that the routine feeding of antibiotics to animals could spur the creation of antibiotic resistant superbugs in humans, creating a health hazard. Tyson's move, announced on Tuesday morning, aims to help the company meet a deadline recently outlined by McDonald's Corp. to have its U.S. restaurants gradually stop buying chicken raised with human antibiotics over the next two years.
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