Hyderabad: Multinational producers of meat, fish and chicken have adopted double standards and continue to use antibiotics in the food which is supplied to India. However, they desist from doing so when it comes to the food supplied to the US and the Europe, stated the Centre for Science and Environment.
A poultry farmer, on condition of anonymity, said, “The company officials demand that the feed must have these medicines mixed so that the bird and animal are healthy and free of diseases. During winters, these animals are affected and to ensure that they are free from disease, there is continuous supply of medicines in powdered form in their feed. These are the practices which have continued since years and now stopping them will affect the production cycle.”
In a series of tests that have been carried out and evaluated, the CSE found that the antibiotics were used in the farms. Mr Chandra Bhushan, deputy director general of CSE, said, “The companies which are supplying foods to the US and the European Union are not using antibiotics for the birds and animals. But those which are earmarked for India are used. There is a rising antimicrobial resistance in India and they cannot adopt this double standard.” The multinational food chains supply meat, fish and chicken to corporate food chains, hotels and the food processing industry.
CSE has sought response from 11 multinational companies of which three are based in India regarding the plans and policies for eliminating antibiotic misuse. But there has not been any response. Mr Amit Khurana, head of food safety at CSE, noted, “We have to first ensure that the organised sector complies with the guidelines of the World Health Organisation and introduce a plan to reduce the use of antibiotics. Once we have them, various associations will fall in line.”...