Long gone are the iconic scenes of American landscapes dotted with family farms and red barns. Most of these have been replaced by industrialized facilities controlled by large corporations that rely on concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs).
During the height of the cold weather months, people count on antibiotics to fight bacterial infections. What they may not know is that current overuse of antibiotics is making bacteria more rapidly resistant to "essential antibiotics."
It was not a great surprise that the FDA's new cephalosporin livestock rules have the Agribusiness Seal of Approval. It was Big Pharma and Agribusiness lobbying that killed its stronger cephalosporin rules issued four years after.
No one takes health and fitness more seriously than today's top football players. So isn't it kind of absurd that as we watch Sunday's game we will all be bombarded by advertisements for some of the unhealthiest junk food imaginable?
Because of the overuse of antibiotics, antibiotic resistance is developing all of the time. With microbial evolution outpacing human invention, a nightmare scenario is possible. And this isn't just science fiction.
The genetics and genomics of bacterial antibiotic resistance and virulence teach us some fundamentally important lessons about evolution. They also pose some significant challenges to scientific explanation.
Today, American farmers raising animals without antibiotics do so despite policies that point them in the opposite direction. With this handicap, who will win out in the race to feed the global consumer who increasingly wants their meat antibiotic free?