Representatives to White House: USTR ignored scientific findings on human-use antibiotics

Action Plan Must Require Faster and Stronger Action to Preserve Effectiveness of Antibiotics

WASHINGTON — The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) today applauded a letter of concern sent by U.S. Representative Sherrod Brown (D-O) and eight other House Members to U.S. Trade Representative Charlene Barshefsky. The Representative’s letter contends that a recent letter from the U.S. Trade Representative to the European Union complaining of its ban on human-use antibiotics to promote the growth of livestock “overlooks the findings of several studies and influential public health agencies.” Those agencies include the Centers for Disease Control, the World Health Organization, the National Academy of Science, and the General Accounting Office.

     “The Clinton Administration, in a misguided effort to protect U.S. meatpackers and drug companies, is protesting the European Union's sensible decision banning antibiotics used by humans from animal feed,” said Michael F. Jacobson, CSPI's Executive Director. “Instead, the White House should be telling the Food and Drug Administration to adopt the EU's ban.”

     In addition to Brown, the letter was signed by Representatives David E. Bonior (D-MI), John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), Peter A. DeFazio (D-OR), Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), Carrie P. Meek (D-FL), Fortney Pete Stark (D-CA), and Henry A. Waxman (D-CA).