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Your Gold'n Plump chicken won't contain antibiotics in future

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One Minnesota chicken producer will be nixing the antibiotics to become one of the first of its kind to go completely antibiotic-free.

St. Cloud-based Gold'n Plump has already released some products labeled with the No Antibiotics-Ever and American Humane Certified farm program seal.

The company says it'll work to gradually expand those products, and by 2019 the entire line of retail and deli products will have those labels.

No antibiotics

Gold'n Plump is making the pledge that its chickens are "never-ever" given antibiotics – not even when they're inside an egg.

So what's the big deal with using antibiotics anyway?

A study by Princeton University says using antibiotics in farm animals can be bad for people, the animals and the environment.

It says that overusing antibiotics can result in bacteria evolving and becoming resistant to medication. So if people get sick from that, antibiotics won't be able to help anymore. This is typically the biggest argument against antibiotic use.

The university adds that the antibiotics aren't always completely digested so traces are expelled in animal waste and released into the environment. That can get into ground water and throw off ecosystems.

Clarifying labels

Gold'n Plump also aims to make its labels easier to read and understand.

The company did a study and found that 62 percent of Minnesotans who shop for chicken are confused by package claims. And 34 percent are confused by the different antibiotic labeling

Consumer reports says there are numerous labels out there that hint at a product being free from antibiotics but don't necessarily mean that.

For example: Chickens marketed as "Antibiotic-free" or "all-natural" don't necessarily mean that no antibiotics were ever used.

So if that's important to you, check your labels closely.

To help with the confusion, the Minnesota-based company explains exactly what its labels mean on its website.

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