On 10/16/16 The Wall Street Journal posted an interesting interview with Jim Purdue, chariman of the mega poultry agribusiness Purdue Farms, Inc., discusses why Purdue eliminated routine use of antibiotics for growth promotion and disease prevention, and what happened as a result.
Purdue discusses how consumers are looking at their food the way they look at their kids, and thinking they don’t want their chicken to eat antibiotics every day any more than they want their children to, plus there are growing concerns about antibiotic resistance. And, he recognizes that there was “enough evidence that this was becoming an issue and not a fad.”
Part of the interview covers “lessons learned” from Purdue’s recent expansion of organic chicken production. To be successful with organic production, Purdue says: “They also have to have pasture access. They have to have full light…And there are enhancements…What we have found is that the organic chickens are twice as active as our chickens were in our houses which have no windows” (The Wall Street Journal, 10/16/16). These organic practices, as well as the switch to an all-veggie diet that Perdue implemented for all its chickens, show that even the biggest companies are taking these issues seriously.
Source: Jason Anders, “Jim Perdue Talks About Change in Chickens- and the Market, “ October 16, 2016, The Wall Street Journal