Dear Subway, Ask a Farmer First

As we have probably all heard, Subway has announced they will only serve antibiotic-free meat. Not only meat that does not contain antibiotic residues, but they wish to use meat that has never before received an antibiotic treatment. There are numerous reasons why this is wrong.

  1. ALL MEAT IS ANTIBIOTIC FREE. It always has been.  You can not buy meat in a store that is tainted with antibiotics. Now, I am a dairy farmer, but we also sell cows on our farm for beef. All antibiotics have a withdrawal period so that there are no antibiotic residues in the treated animal. We physically cannot sell an animal if that withdrawal period has not passed. It is ILLEGAL. Subway is instilling fear in consumers to sell their product, because all meat is antibiotic free.
  2. Some animals NEED an antibiotic treatment.  Just like humans do! I do not enjoy using antibiotics, or do I use them just because I can. I will treat an animal with antibiotics if that is the ONLY way it’s health will improve. And honestly, I do not use antibiotics that often. There are ways to prevent an animal from getting sick, and farmers always make sure these actions are being taken. But sometimes animals get sick for unknown reasons, just like humans.
  3. If Subway only wants to use meat from animals that have never been treated with antibiotics, are they saying that animals that have gotten sick are worthless? Because I have a HUGE problem with that. I take care of dairy calves every day, and if one of my babies is sick, they have my full attention. I will do whatever it takes to make them better. Using antibiotics are a last resort, but if that is what is going to help my calves be healthy again, I will do it. No farmer wants to use antibiotics – they are expensive, but the animal is always worth it.


This is one of my babies. Her name is Lacey.  She did require an antibiotic treatment when she was 3 weeks old. It was worth every penny! And guess what! She is a beautiful calf that will go on to produce milk and beef for consumers and none of what is sold for human consumption will have antibiotics in it.

Subway did not look at the facts. If you have questions about your food, ask a farmer first.

Subway, you no longer have my business.

I always liked Jimmy Johns better anyway.


4 thoughts on “Dear Subway, Ask a Farmer First

  1. This was very interesting. I’m honestly not qualified to jump in with an opinion on the issue, but usually what I’ve seen in newspapers and online up to this point has tended to begin with the assumption that antibiotics in livestock are a bad thing. It’s good to get a clear, understandable explanation of the farmer’s side of the argument.

      • You’re welcome. I was just blog-hopping and was interested in the post. I’d vaguely heard about antibiotics in meat being an issue, but I wasn’t entirely sure what the points of controversy were. I envy you your life on a farm, by the way, although I’m sure it’s tough work with long hours. I’ll bet it’s also fulfilling.

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