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Wal-Mart Pressures Meat Suppliers      05/22 08:22

   NEW YORK (AP) -- Wal-Mart, the nation's largest food retailer, is urging its 
thousands of U.S. suppliers to curb the use of antibiotics in farm animals and 
improve treatment of them.

   That means asking meat producers, eggs suppliers and others to use 
antibiotics only for disease prevention or treatment, not to fatten their 
animals, a common industry practice. The guidelines also aim to get suppliers 
to stop using sow gestation crates and other housing that lacks sufficient 

   They're also being asked to avoid painful procedures like de-horning or 
castration without proper pain management.

   Wal-Mart wants suppliers to provide it with an annual report and publicly 
report their progress on their own websites.

   Wal-Mart is facing pressure from shoppers who want to know more about how 
their food is produced.


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