Since the 1970s, the Food and Drug Administration has known that widespread use of large quantities of antibiotics on healthy livestock contributes to the ongoing health problem of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Despite that knowledge, the FDA has done little to curb the use of penicillin and tetracyclines in livestock feed, which puts people at risk. But this week, in a major victory for food safety advocates, a US Magistrate Judge, acting on a lawsuit brought against the FDA by NRDC and partners, ordered the FDA to initiate proceedings to withdraw approval for antibiotic use in animal feed, unless drug manufacturers prove in a hearing that said antibiotic use is safe for humans.

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