Sadly, it's not news that many farm animals are pumped full of drugs, including antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, and steroids, as a way of keeping them healthy until slaughter. While, in theory, only minimal traces of these substances should make their way into your burger or sausages, last year the US Food and Drug Administration found beef samples that contained five times the legal drug limit. The World Health Organisation later warned that the overuse of antibiotics in meat could cause antimicrobial resistance in humans.
Given the huge global demand for meat, it's unlikely that farms will ever become substance-free. But one organic farm in Sorens, Switzerland has come up with another way of keeping cattle healthy, without the need for drugs. In collaboration with vets from the University of Bern, farmers here will start treating their cows using acupuncture.
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