Manure from cattle administered antibiotics drastically changes the bacterial and fungal make-up of surrounding soil, leading to ecosystem dysfunction, according to a Virginia Tech research team
"While the human health implications of widespread antibiotic use are well known, Wepking et al. investigate another potentially important affect—how exposure to antibiotics shapes the soil microbial community and its functioning," said Serita Frey, a professor of soil microbial ecology at the University of New Hampshire. "This research highlights that antibiotic additions to soil (through cattle manure application) have the potential to alter soil function in important ways, particularly as related to carbon cycling."
Why did people start adding antibiotics to cattle feed in the first place? Faster weight gain. Turns out you don't need synthetic antibiotics to do that, many herbs that contain natural antibiotics will do exactly that -- and without developing strains of antibiotic resistant bacteria.
This was done to try and curb the over use of antibiotics which likey is helping cause super bugs. While it is not all inclusive, and it doesn't completely halt the use except in actual verified cases of illness it is sort of a step in the right direction to decrease the over use of antibiotics in livestock. Since now you have to consult a vet to get the meds for your animals.
"Where will you drive your own picket stake? Where will you choose to make your stand? Give me a threshold, a specific point at which you will finally stop running, at which you will finally fight back." (Derrick Jensen)
hau Devin, The new rule only covers antibiotics used in feed.
Changes include eliminating the growth promotion use of human medically important antibiotics and expanding the list of feed-grade antibiotics classified as Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) drugs. Historically, a majority of feed-grade antibiotics used in or on animal feeds have been available to producers over-the-counter, without approval from a veterinarian. By Jan. 1, 2017 the FDA will move all human medically important feed-grade antibiotics to the VFD drug process.
This rule does not cover injectable antibiotics, so there is still that to contend with. It also only covers those antibiotics considered "Human Medically Important" so if the antibiotic is only considered for animal use, it is still allowed without regulation.
As far as soil is concerned, any antibiotic will have the effect of killing off the bacteria we desire to be thriving so we have soil instead of dirt. The purpose of antibiotics is to destroy bacteria, and they are quite good at doing their job.
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