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Calif. antibiotics bill fails to move forward

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Jun 18, 2009
By dvm360.com staff
Sacramento -- A California Senate bill introduced in February that would have placed limits on antibiotic use in food animals and required school districts to use only antibiotic-free meat has failed.

Senate Bill 416 would have would prohibited the use of antibiotics for "non-therapeutic and prophylactic use in any animal raised for production of any human food product." Under the bill, government agencies would have had to purchase antibiotic-free meat supplies, and school districts would have been prohibited from serving poultry or meat products treated with antibiotics (withholding times would apply) by 2012.

The bill was passed with amendments by the Senate Agricultural Committee, but failed by a vote of 20-15 on its third reading.

The debate about non-therapeutic antimicrobial use has been ongoing among veterinary policymakers, and the American Veterinary Medical Association approved a resolution at its winter session that would address the threat of antimicrobial resistance through science-based risk analysis.