Market Overview

McDonald's Investor: Ban Antibiotics!

McDonald's Investor: Ban Antibiotics!
  • A group of McDonalds shareholders have filed a proposal calling for the elimination of all antibiotic-treated meat.
  • The CDC says that antibiotic-resistant bacteria are responsible for 23,000 U.S. deaths per year.
  • McDonalds received a grade of C in a recent report scoring restaurants on antibiotic usage.

Back in March, McDonald’s Corporation (NYSE: MCD) announced that it plans to reduce the amount of antibiotics used in its chicken. However, the Congregation of Benedictine Sisters in Boerne, TX filed a shareholder proposal today that calls for McDonalds to go even further in eliminating antibiotics in all of its meat.

Inconsistent Stance

McDonalds is taking heat from shareholders over its seemingly inconsistent stance on the issue of antibiotics. While eliminating antibiotics in chicken is a step in the right direction, the Congregation of Benedictine Sisters says that McDonald’s continued use of antibiotics in beef and pork is unacceptable.

“We question why this important commitment isn’t also being applied to the beef and pork they source, as hamburgers are a mainstay of McDonald’s business,” Sr. Susan Mika explains.

Impact Of Antibiotics Use

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has warned on several occasions of the dangers of antibiotic overuse. The CDC estimates that antibiotic-resistant bacteria infect more than 2 million Americans annually, killing about 23,000 people per year.

Restaurant Report Card

A new report by Friends of the Earth, the Natural Resources Defense Council and four other health organizations grades the major fast food and fast casual U.S. restaurant chains on their use of antibiotics in their meat supply. McDonalds received a C grade in the report.

Other big names didn’t even fair as well as McDonald’s. Darden Restaurants Inc (NYSE: DRI)’s Olive Garden, Papa John’s International Inc (NASDAQ: PZZA) and all three of Yum! Brands Inc (NYSE: YUM)’s chains (Pizza Hut, KFC and Taco Bell) came in among the lowest-scoring F-graded restaurants.

The only two names that received an A grade in the report were top-scorers Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc (NYSE: CMG) and Panera Bread Co (NASDAQ: PNRA).

Disclosure: the author holds no position in the stocks mentioned.

Posted-In: Benedictine Sisters CDC McDonald's antibioticsNews Restaurants Events Top Stories General Best of Benzinga


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