Avicolli, Tommi

Tommi Avicolli Mecca is co-editor of Avanti Popolo: Italians Sailing Beyond Columbus, and editor of Smash the Church, Smash the State: The Early Years of Gay Liberation, which has been nominated for both an American Library Association and a Lambda Literary award. His website is www.avicollimecca.com.

FDA Wimps Out

By Tommi Avicolli-Mecca

The Federal Drug Administration (FDA) may be inching its way to an outright ban on the use of antibiotics in meat unless it’s specifically used to protect the health of the animal, but at this pace it may take forever.

This past Monday, the government agency released a proposed recommendation (open to public comment for the next 60 days) that the meat industry cease using the drugs to increase production and growth. It also suggested that veterinarians be consulted about the use of any antibiotic in the production of meat. The recommendation is expected to become official after public comment.

According to an FDA statement, “The development of resistance to this important class of drugs, and the resulting loss of their effectiveness as antimicrobial therapies, poses a serious public health threat.”