According to a recent nationwide poll conducted by the Consumer Reports National Research Center, 86 percent of consumers indicated they thought that meat raised without antibiotics should be available in their local supermarket.
Consumer Reports shoppers visited 136 supermarkets in 23 states, including at least five stores belonging to each of the 13 largest (by sales) supermarket chains in the nation, and collected data on more than 1,000 different meat and poultry items making some type of “no antibiotics” claim on a label. The shoppers found wide geographic availability, but big differences among chains and stores in availability of meat and poultry raised without antibiotics. On the one hand, Whole Foods guarantees that all meat and poultry sold in its stores is never treated with antibiotics. Shoppers also found wide selections of meat and poultry raised without antibiotics at Giant, Hannaford, Shaw’s, and Stop & Shop.
In the Consumer Reports poll, 24 percent of consumers said meat raised without antibiotics was not available at the supermarket where they usually shop. Of this group, 82 percent said they would buy it if it were available.
Meat and poultry raised without antibiotics does not have to be expensive.
Studies over the last decade have indicated that raising meat and poultry without antibiotics could be accomplished at minimal cost to the consumer—about 5 cents extra per pound for pork and less than a penny per pound extra for chicken.
June 2012/ Consumer Reports/ USA.