Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Carroll County Producers Respond

NY Times article upsets local farmers
Ag members say hogs not linked to MRSA
Updated: Monday, 16 Mar 2009, 6:45 PM EDT

Renetta DuBose

CARROLL COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) - New York Times Columnist Nicholas Kristof put the small town of Camden under the microscope this week after reporting that local hog farms may have caused an outbreak of MRSA or staph infections. Carroll County Ag Association member Miriam Robeson said the article is not completely accurate.

"I think it's a very poorly researched article and it's intended just to make people upset about the livestock industry, not to really inform them," said Robeson.

Kristof alleges that hog farms, like one near the Camden area, overuses antibiotics in livestock feed. He said the process leads to MRSA in the pigs, which could be transferred to humans who ear pork, use a contaminated plate or utensil or from wastes leaking into ground water.

Robeson said Kristof's accusations do not represent how Carroll County farmers operate.

"The producers in Carroll County are very responsible. They work very hard. They have to drink the water, eat the food, live with the animals or live near the animals that they take care of. They're going to be very responsible producers," said Robeson. Read More

Camden, IN has been thrust into the spotlight over the weekend after their local farmers were accused of being responsible for creating and distributing the antibiotic resistant MRSA bacteria. The NY Times continued their assault on American agriculture by printing the article over the weekend. The local ag association is working very hard to explain how antibiotics are used in a responsible manner. Healthy livestock translate into a safe food supply, so it’s important for everyone to make sure we have the tools available to keep them that way.

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