The health of the animals within the food animal production system impacts many aspects of the system far removed from the animals, according to the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST).

Many groups in society, including politicians and activists are advocating significant changes to livestock production practices including limitations on antimicrobial use, and requirements for outdoor experiences. “Understanding the complex relationship between animal health and food safety is critical,” according to a CAST press release.

“One of the primary recommendations from CAST is that policymakers and consumers carefully consider their recommendations on how livestock should be raised because animal health is closely linked to public health,” says H. Scott Hurd, DVM, Iowa State University, CAST task force chairman.

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