Thinking of grilling a steak this weekend? Well, don't read this, then: a disturbing new study revealed that about a quarter of all meat and poultry sampled from around the United States have drug-resitant strains of Staphylococcus aureus.
About half — 47% of the samples — contained S. aureus, the researchers reported Friday in Clinical Infectious Diseases. Of those bacteria, 52% were resistant to at least three classes of antibiotics. DNA testing suggested the animals were the source of contamination. The research was funded by the Pew Campaign on Human Health and Industrial Farming.
"The fact that drug-resistant S. aureus was so prevalent, and likely came from the food animals themselves, is troubling, and demands attention to how antibiotics are used in food-animal production today," said Lance Price, lead author of the study and director of TGen's Center for Food Microbiology and Environmental Health, said in a news release.