(Natural News) Sanderson Farms, the third largest poultry producer in the nation, advertises that their chicken is "natural" and "antibiotic-free." Like many large meat producers, Sanderson Farms gets away with these false claims without receiving any enforceable scientific scrutiny from meat inspectors working for the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Now, independent food safety organizations are challenging these "natural" and "antibiotic-free" claims in court.
According to a lawsuit, a team of independent scientists from the Consumers Union have analyzed USDA tests conducted on thousands of random meat samples from poultry, pork, and beef farms across the country. The findings, published by Consumer Reports, are shocking. Out of nearly 6,000 samples of meat, 2.6 percent contained chloramphenicol, an antibiotic that causes anemia in humans. For every 10,000 people exposed to chloramphenicol, one will suffer a life threatening condition called aplastic anemia. The levels of chloramphenicol exceeded safety limits set by the Consumer Union's team of scientists.
Another drug detected is ketamine. This veterinary anesthetic is used illegally in livestock and elicits hallucinogenic effects. It's also an illegal party drug, but families everywhere are unknowingly getting small doses at the dinner table. Finally, 1.6 percent of the samples included phenylbutazone, an anti-inflammatory drug that is too risky at any level for human health. Phenylbutazone is a known carcinogen that also causes aplastic anemia. Low level dietary consumption of these drugs raises one's risk of cancer, causes antibiotic resistance, weakened immunity, and genetic harm to developing fetuses.