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Perdue removes antibiotics from chicken hatcheries

Perdue Farms Inc., the third-largest U.S. chicken producer, removed antibiotics from its hatcheries as part of a 12-year plan to reduce the use of the drugs.

“We listened to our consumers and we are proud to have developed a responsible program that does not risk the medical effectiveness of antibiotics in human health, provides appropriate health care for animals and does not employ growth-promoting drugs,” Jim Perdue, chairman of the closely held company, said today in a statement.

Tyson Foods Inc. is the largest U.S. chicken processor, followed by JBS SA’s Pilgrim’s Pride Corp. unit.