Many groups in society, including politicians, activists, scientists, and stakeholders, are advocating significant changes to livestock production practices. These changes include modification to stocking densities, limitations on antimicrobial use and requirements for outdoor “experiences.” Such changes may affect animal health.

Simultaneously, consumers are demanding virtually risk-free food, and they think food safety should be addressed on-farm as well as during processing, without understanding the relationship between animal health and food safety.

The Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) addresses these concerns in a Commentary prepared by a 10-member task force of subject experts. To broaden the reach of this important information, CAST is publishing a Spanish language version of the Commentary.

Led by Task Force Chair Scott Hurd, DVM, Iowa State University, the authors of this new CAST Commentary:

1.       Discuss the quantifiable impact animal health has on public health risk of foodborne illness from farm products,

2.       Identify the factors that impact animal health, and

3.       Highlight specific research needs.

The Commentary looks at the pressures to change livestock rearing methods, evidence to support the direct public health impact on human illness days and food safety and inspection service regulations. The authors use anecdotal examples, diagrams, and graphs to deliver their findings about the ways that healthy animals result in safer food.

The full Spanish text of CAST Commentary QTA2012-1 SPA is available online only at the CAST Web site, www.cast-science.org <http://www.cast-science.org/> , along with many of CAST’s other scientific publications. All CAST Issue Papers and Commentaries are free.