McDonald's switches to non-antibiotic chicken

McDonald's switches to non-antibiotic chicken
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McChicken is changing.

The fast food company McDonald’s announced a new menu sourcing initiative Wednesday for its approximate 14,000 restaurants across the U.S. Only chicken that is free of antibiotics that are used in humans will be allowed in stores. 

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McDonald’s said it also plans to start offering customers jugs of low-fat white milk and fat-free chocolate milk from cows that have not been treated with the artificial growth hormone rBST.

"Our customers want food that they feel great about eating — all the way from the farm to the restaurant — and these moves take a step toward better delivering on those expectations," McDonald's U.S President Mike Andres said in a news release.

McDonalds said its working closely with farms to ensure all their chicken is free of antibiotics used in human medicine. Farmers, who supply the chains with chicken, will still be allowed to continue using ionophores, a type of antibiotic not used in humans that helps keep chickens healthy.

The Center for Food and Safety, which applauded McDonald’s menu sourcing changes, said antibiotic resistant bacteria has been pegged as one of top five health threats facing the nation.

“As the world’s largest fast food chain, McDonald’s has taken a significant step forward in reducing the overuse of antibiotics in the poultry industry and preserving antibiotic effectiveness for people,” Paige Tomaselli, a Center for Food Safety senior staff attorney, said in a release. “By working with their poultry suppliers to reduce or eliminate antibiotics in the chickens raised for nuggets, salads, and sandwiches, McDonald’s is setting the bar for the entire fast food industry."