In an effort to combat citrus greening, some citrus farmers have reportedly begun spraying antibiotics on their trees, sparking concerns about antibiotic resistance, according to the New York Times. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) apparently approved the use of streptomycin and oxytetracycline for emergencies “despite strenuous objections from the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention” and the existence of bans on similar uses in Europe and Brazil. The Times calls the growers’ current use and the levels that EPA has approved for the future “the largest use of medically important antibiotics in cash crops” and contrasts the decision to the ban on antibiotics used to promote growth in farm animals. One plant pathologist reportedly told the Times that EPA prohibits the application of antibiotics 40 days before harvest, resulting in “little chance consumers would ingest the drugs.”

About The Author


For decades, manufacturers, distributors and retailers at every link in the food chain have come to Shook, Hardy & Bacon to partner with a legal team that understands the issues they face in today's evolving food production industry. Shook attorneys work with some of the world's largest food, beverage and agribusiness companies to establish preventative measures, conduct internal audits, develop public relations strategies, and advance tort reform initiatives.