Investor group launches campaign to curb antibiotic use in food

Sun Apr 10, 2016 7:01pm EDT
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* 54 investors managing $1 trln join coalition

* Aviva Investors, Boston Common sign letter to ten companies

* McDonalds among those asked to tighten supply chains

By Simon Jessop, Martinne Geller and Lisa Baertlein

LONDON/LOS ANGELES, April 11 (Reuters) - Fifty four large investors managing 1 trillion pounds ($1.41 trillion) in assets have launched a campaign to curb the use of antibiotics in the meat and poultry used by ten large U.S. and British restaurant groups.

McDonalds and JD Wetherspoon were among those to receive a March 15 letter from institutions including Aviva Investors asking them to set a timeline to stop the use of medically important antibiotics in their supply chains.

The other eight approached were Domino's Pizza Group , Brinker International, Darden Restaurants , Mitchells & Butlers, Restaurant Brands International , Restaurant Group, The Wendy's Company and Yum! Brands.

The move follows warnings from the World Health Organisation that the world is moving towards a post-antibiotic era in which many infections would no longer be treatable because of the overuse of antibiotics.

Eighty percent of antibiotics produced in the United States are given to livestock, the coalition said in a statement, adding that failure to confront their "irresponsible" use threatens both health and investor returns.   Continued...