KFC to Phase Out Chicken Raised on Human Antibiotics

KFC to Phase Out Chicken Raised on Human Antibiotics

KFC is making a change to its chicken for health reasons.

Matthew Wellington, program director for the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, or PIRG, a consumer group, said KFC's move alone could push the percentage of the chicken industry under an antibiotics commitment or already using responsible practices to more than 50 percent.

KFC said it its working with more than 2,000 poultry farms around the U.S.to make the change.

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"Antibiotics should only be used to treat disease and not wasted on healthy livestock to make them grow faster or to compensate for filthy conditions on factory farms", Halloran said.

The move is part of a growing trend within the fast food industry, with other chains including Burger King and McDonald's (mcd) moving away from using antibiotics in chicken products, USA Today reports. NRDC estimates that more than 40 percent of the USA chicken industry is now either under an antibiotics stewardship commitment or is already using responsible practices, according to published statements and data from the WattPoultryUSA 2017 Survey.

The Southern-themed fast-food maker, which even I have to admit I've enjoyed from time to time (those mashed potatoes might not be fresh, but they're pretty damn tasty), is now the second-biggest US chicken chain.

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KFC's rivals have already announced plans to curb their use of chickens raised with antibiotics.

The chain, with 4,200 restaurants across the nation, said Friday it is cutting antibiotics from both its boneless and on-the-bone chicken. The brand has also made recent commitments to ensure all core products are free of artificial colors and flavors by 2018 and make its menu free of food dyes by this year, with the exception of beverages and third-party products. With the Re-Colonelization of KFC, the brand committed to simplifying operations in its restaurants, investing more than 100,000 hours to re-train its team members, bringing the Colonel back in its advertising, remodeling more than 3,000 restaurants over a three-year period, and inviting America to come back and experience the brand they remembered. KFC's new policy will likely move this percentage even higher. That includes initiatives to simplify operations, retrain workers, build new ads around the idea of the chain's original founder, Colonel Harland Sanders, remodel more than 3,000 stores.

The overuse breeds antibiotic-resistant bacteria, which can spread to people through various pathways, the release stated. Other shareholder advocates, such as Green Century Capital Management, have secured antibiotics policies from Starbucks and Jack in the Box in the last several months.

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