Last night on CBS, Katie Couric took an in depth look at the practice of feeding antibiotics to livestock. Factory farmers who want to keep their herds healthy and growing quickly have found that the easiest and most cost-efficient way to do so is to include small doses of antibiotics in the livestock feed.

What’s wrong with keeping your hogs healthy? Well, as Couric points out, “some people say giving animals antibiotics to prevent illness or promote growth is like putting antibiotics in a child’s cereal.” Overuse of antibiotics leads to the creation of super-bugs, or antibiotic resistant bacterial strains. At one poultry plant in Arkansas, 37 workers developed MSRA, or methicillin resistant staph, an infection very difficult to treat due to its resistance to most antibiotics. More than one person developed an MSRA infection 12 times. The report also mentions a study carried out by the University of Iowa, which found that 70% of hogs and 64% of workers on several farms in the midwest contained a strain of MSRA. At farms that don’t use antibiotics, not a single strain of the infection was found. These are scary numbers.

So what’s the bottom line? You need to know that your meat is antibiotic free. And the best way to be sure is to talk to your farmer. You can feel confident eating Lava Lake Lamb, because we never feed our animals antibiotics.

To learn more, watch the clip here, or read the accompanying article. You can check out the second half of Couric’s two-part series, tonight on CBS.

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