McDonald’s, Chicago, announced an antibiotic use policy to reduce the overall use of antibiotics, as defined by the World Health Organization (WHO), Switzerland, which applies across 85% of today’s global beef supply chain.

McDonald’s, in collaboration with suppliers and beef producers, is taking a strategic and phased approach:

  • First, McDonald’s is partnering with supplying beef producers in its Top 10 beef sourcing markets to measure and understand current usage of antibiotics across a diverse, global supply chain;
  • By the end of 2020, McDonald’s will establish reduction targets for medically important antibiotics for these markets; and
  • Starting in 2022, McDonald’s will begin reporting progress against antibiotic reduction targets across its Top 10 beef sourcing markets.

“McDonald’s believe antibiotic resistance is a critical public health issue, and we take seriously our unique position to use our scale for good to continue to address this challenge. We are excited to partner with our beef supply chain around the world to accelerate the responsible use of antibiotics, whilst continuing to look after the health and welfare of those animals in our supply chain,” says Keith Kenny, global vice president, sustainability.

McDonald’s has been developing this policy over the past 1.5 years, while consulting a cross-section of expert stakeholders from veterinarians to public health leaders to the beef producers responsible for taking care of the health of animals within the supply chain every day.

McDonald’s also joined the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) Challenge. Launched in September, the AMR Challenge is a year-long effort to accelerate the fight against antimicrobial resistance across the globe.