McDonald’s Corporation announced it’ll be expanding its effort to cut back on the use of antibiotics critical to human health across the global chicken supply.
The fast food giant will require its poultry suppliers to phase out drugs categorized under the highest priority category in the World Health Organization’s four categories by January of next year. Those antibiotics will disappear from use in McDonald’s products in Canada, the U.S., Brazil, Japan, and South Korea. Australia and Russian suppliers will stop using the antibiotics at the end of the following year. Suppliers in other markets will need to stop using the medications by January of 2027.
The company is said to be working on similar plans for its beef, dairy, and egg suppliers as well, but for now, it starts with poultry. A McDonald’s statement says, “We understand that animals, like people, get sick and require treatment. Treating sick animals is consistent with McDonald’s long standing commitment to animal health and welfare.” The company says it looks forward to engaging farmers and veterinarians in the responsible use of antibiotics is key to our vision of preserving antibiotic effectiveness.