FDA urges withdrawal of poultry drug from market

March 22, 2003
/ Print / Reprints /
/ Text Size+
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has urged Bayer A.G. to remove the drug Baytril from the market on the grounds that its use as an animal antibiotic may eventually compromise the ability of Cipro, also a Bayer product, to fight anthrax and other diseases in people.

Baytril, which is used to treat infectious disease in poultry, is chemically similar to Cipro, with both products belonging to a class of drugs known as fluoroquinolones, among the most powerful antibiotics currently on the market. Hence the concern by FDA, doctors and consumer groups that widespread use of Baytril to treat infections like campylobacter in poultry will cause disease germs to become resistant to closely related drugs like Cipro.

At press time, the manufacturer, veterinarians and members of the poultry industry all voiced opposition to the withdrawal of Baytril, indicating that its danger to human health had not been proved. Farmers say they will have to change their poultry-raising practices and could lose millions of dollars if the drug is withdrawn.

Bayer officials issued a statement that Baytril poses "no public health threat" and that "there's no evidence that withdrawal of the product would either resolve or have a meaningful impact on the number" of infections with resistant germs in humans.

This isn't the first time that FDA and Bayer have butted heads over Baytril. Last year, FDA recommended banning use of the drug and another fluoroquinolone antibiotic, sarafloxacin, in poultry. According to the New York Times, FDA made the request after studies suggested that resistant camplyobacter germs in humans had increased to more than 17 percent since the introduction of fluoroquinolones to treat poultry four years before. The Times reported that Saraafloxacin manufacturer Abbott Laboratories agreed to remove the drug from the market, but that Bayer refused to pull Baytril.

Bayer officials maintain that more proof is needed that the use of antibiotics in animals can be blamed for increased resistance in people. FDA must decide whether there is enough evidence supporting its position to warrant a full hearing.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to Food Engineering Magazine.

You must login or register in order to post a comment.



Image Galleries

Plant of the Year 2014

Blue Diamond Growers was chosen as Food Engineering's 2014 Plant of the Year. The Sacramento-based company is the world’s largest producer of almonds and almond ingredients.


Burns & McDonnell project manager RJ Hope and senior project engineer Justin Hamilton discuss the distinctions between Food Safety and Food Defense as well as the implications for food manufacturers of the Food Safety Modernization Act.
More Podcasts

FSMA Audit

What is the is most important step you have taken to become ready for a FSMA audit?
View Results Poll Archive

Food Engineering

FE September 2014

2014 September

The September 2014 issue of Food Engineering explores how lean manufacturing, quality improvements and increased automation helps processors meet rapidly changing demands. Also, read how robotics, advanced machine controls, software and OEE are just a few of the tools that can boost productivity on packaging lines.

Table Of Contents Subscribe


Food Authentication Using Bioorganic Molecules

This text provides critical tools and data needed to augment routine food analysis and enhance food safety by aiding in the detection of counterfeit, and potentially deleterious, foods.

More Products

Clear Seas Research

Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications,Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.

Food Master

Food Master Cover 2014Food Master 2014 is now available!

Where the buying process begins in the food and beverage manufacturing market. 

Visit www.foodmaster.com to learn more.


FE recent tweets

facebook_40.pngtwitter_40px.pngyoutube_40px.png linkedin_40px.pngGoogle +