Chick-Fil-A Moves Away From Antibiotic-Free Chicken Sparking Backlash

The famed food chain Chick-fil-A recently announced that it would move away from serving antibiotic-free chicken starting in the spring of 2024.

On its website, Chick-fil-A blamed the move on supply concerns.

“To maintain supply of this high-quality chicken to expect from us, Chick-fil-A will shift from No Antibiotics Ever (NAE) to No Antibiotics Important to Human Medicine (NAIHM) starting in the Spring of 2024,” the food chain revealed.

The Associated Press (AP) noted that livestock producers have depended on antibiotics for years to boost weight gain in animals like chickens, cows, pigs and sheep, leading their businesses to flourish.

In past years, countries such as the U.S. have started restricting the practice with evidence indicating that it was contributing to drug resistance and hindering the effectiveness of antibiotics in humans.

Chick-fil-A’s decision sparked a massive backlash on social media.

On X, formerly known as Twitter, the company was criticized over its move, with several individuals deleting the application from their cellphones.

“Chick-fil-A going back on their no antibiotics ever commitment was not on my bingo card. It’s been a good run,” one user wrote, while sharing a screenshot showing them deleting the food chain’s application.

Conservative commentator Alex Clark issued a scathing rebuke of Chick-fil-A and urged Americans to stop eating at the fast food chain.

“Just wanted to let you know that chick-fil-a just walked back their NO ANTIBIOTICS EVER rule for their chicken,” Clark wrote. “You have to stop eating there.”

Chick-fil-A’s decision comes after other companies have taken a similar approach to serving their customers.

The move comes after Tyson Foods announced it would transition to NAIHM production by the end of 2024. The organization became antibiotic-free in 2017.

In May 2023, Tyson Foods senior director of animal welfare, Karen Christensen, described the move as “based on scientific research and industry leanings,” noting that the company began using antibiotics known as ionophores, which don’t affect human medicine, to “improve the overall health and welfare of the birds in our care.”

Like Tyson Foods, Panera Bread announced in March 2024 that it would eliminate claims such as “No Antibiotics Ever,” “Vegetarian Fed,” “Grass Fed Pasture Raised,” “Animal Welfare” and any mentions of “Hormones” on its products in stores across America.