Stephen McDonnell, Founder and CEO of Applegate, Speaks Out about Antibiotics Lawsuit Against the FDA

Jun 06, 2011, 08:00 ET from Applegate

BRIDGEWATER, N.J., June 6, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Stephen McDonnell, founder and CEO of Applegate, the leading producer of organic and natural meats and cheeses, issued a statement today regarding a lawsuit filed by the Natural Resources Defense Council, Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), Food Animal Concerns Trust (FACT), Public Citizen, and Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) against the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for failing to prevent the overuse of antibiotics in food animal production.

"When we started Applegate in 1987, producing meat products with respect for the animals, land and farmers was the foundation of the company, which ultimately led to a commitment to  raising animals without nontherapeutic antibiotics. Despite conventional wisdom, Applegate has grown year after year, proving that livestock can be raised humanely and without depending on antibiotics. Applegate's success is proof positive that using these drugs on healthy animals is not necessary to remain competitive," said McDonnell. "As a parent and a business leader, I remain committed to doing my part to preserve medicine's first miracle drug for future generations."

The suit claims that the FDA has unlawfully failed to take action to protect the public's health despite its recognition for decades that the low dose use of penicillin and tetracyclines in healthy animals can lead to the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, which can lead to life-threatening infections in people. The group is calling on the FDA to withdraw its approval for most nontherapeutic uses of those drugs in animal feed.

About Applegate

For more than 20 years, Applegate has been producing high-quality natural and organic hot dogs, bacon, sausages, deli meats, cheese and frozen products.  Natural can mean many things, but when Applegate says their products are natural, consumers are guaranteed that the meat inside is:

  • Raised without antibiotics or hormones
  • From animals fed a vegetarian or 100% grass diet and treated with humane animal standards
  • Free of added chemical nitrites, nitrates or phosphates
  • Free of artificial ingredients or preservatives

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Stephen McDonnell

SOURCE Applegate