Sex, Lies, and Antibiotics: Tyson Caught Lying About Antibiotic-Free Chicken

Antibiotic-free chicken injected with drugs before hatchingTyson Injects and Feeds Antibiotics into “Raised without Antibiotics” Labeled Chicken

The second largest chicken producer in the United States has been lying to consumers.  Tyson Foods has been claiming chicken as “Raised without Antibiotics” that has been injected with drugs before hatching.

Tyson has been tricking Americans and bending USDA rules about truthful labeling regarding antibiotics in poultry.    The company has spent tens of millions of dollars in advertising its chicken as “raised without antibiotics” this year.  Tyson has admitted to injecting eggs with antibiotics, and the USDA has responded by asking the company to stop using the antibiotic-free label. Tyson’s has filed a lawsuit to keep using the label, claiming the USDA’s rules do not apply before the second day of life.

Not only does Tyson inject antibiotics into its chickens before they hatch, they also treats the birds’ feed with bacteria-killing ionophores.  Tyson claims that ionophores are antimicrobials rather than antibiotics, but the USDA disagrees. Tyson and the USDA did reach a compromise, and now chicken fed ionophores is labeled “raised without antibiotics that impact antibiotic resistance in humans”.  The antibiotic injection before hatching is a different story though and remains unsettled.

According to Natural News:

Not long after, on June 3, USDA inspectors discovered that in addition to using ionophores, Tyson was regularly injecting its chicken eggs with gentamicin, an antibiotic that has been used for more than 30 years in the United States to treat urinary tract and blood infections. The drug is also stockpiled by the federal government as a treatment for biological agents such as plague.

The USDA has told Tyson that its antibiotic-free label is not “truthful and accurate”; however, Tyson sticks by its claim since technically, the chickens haven’t been “raised” yet when injected “in ovo”.  The truth is the antibiotics remain in the chicken after hatching, and the American public has been lied to by this food giant.

Image:  bigbold on Flickr under a Creative Commons License

10 thoughts on “Sex, Lies, and Antibiotics: Tyson Caught Lying About Antibiotic-Free Chicken”

  1. This really pisses me off. How can companies outright lie and it be allowed? So many companies are doing this now to gain from the world getting greener and it makes me sick.

    In ovo or out, they are still given antibiotics. I bet when Tyson gets hit with a huge law suit they will change their unethical marketing practices.

  2. Yet more evidence for me that I really should stop eating the produce of corporate, industrial-scale agriculture. Which I find really hard to do — two kids, busy lives, budget stretched thin already.

  3. Well I’m still planning on enjoying Tyson’s chicken but now I know that it is disease free. Thanks Tyson for keeping me healthy!

  4. Tyson has a long history of lies and animal cruelty, so while this is very sad, it’s really not shocking to me at all.

    Yet another reason I’m glad I am vegetarian so I don’t have to support Tyson and companies like them. Really the entire industry is lying to us – if we could really see what was going on in factory farms, we’d all be vegetarian…

    More info on Tyson’s abuses here:

  5. Virginia Lamarche

    Our church is planning to state a formal Resolution about the need for ecological justice, and some of us are adding ecological mercy..i.e. just because we are the most powerful creatures on earth does not give us the right to torture helpless animals..Tyson’s chickens are crammed into battery cages for life and can barely move. They never see the light of day…It’s time to take legal action to penalize these cruel producers and the best way to start is not to buy any of their food products.

  6. All the managment of Tyson corp industry Ceo etc, I bet that you do not eat your company’s Chicken !
    I pray that people like Erin Brokovitch and government with integrity certainly catch up and FIX organizations such as yours .

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top