What are sub-therapeutic antibiotics?

by Pre Brands September 21, 2022

Beef done differently

You might have heard of the term sub-therapeutic antibiotics, but what does it mean? 

You may have heard of this term, but if you haven't, we are going to explain what sub-therapeutic antibiotics are. Many farmers will use antibiotics with their cattle to cure or prevent illness." Sub-therapeutic" refers to the use of antibiotics in a preventative manner. Antibiotics help control infectious diseases, but why does a farmer use antibiotics when the animal is healthy? Studies show that sub-therapeutic antibiotic use can interfere with human health because animal-to-man transmission of antimicrobial-resistant bacteria is possible. Simply said, using sub-therapeutic antibiotics means adding antibiotics to a cattle's system that are not ordinarily present. The antibiotics are introduced into their gastrointestinal system preventatively to combat illness.


Sub-therapeutic antibiotics are often used as growth promoters too. Researchers as early as the 1940s discovered that animals fed low levels of antibiotics realized faster growth rates and improved feed utilization (Hays, 1991). This appears to operate through the antibiotic inhibition of normal microflora within the animal's gastrointestinal system, enabling more energy for nutrient use and conversion to weight gain. 


Does Pre® use sub-therapeutic antibiotics?

The short answer is simple: Pre never uses them.

When cattle and other livestock are in feedlots, they experience many adverse conditions. Conditions include:

  • Overcrowding.
  • Exposure to sick animals.
  • Dirty stalls and water supplies.
  • Copious amounts of stress.


Thankfully, Pre NEVER sources from feedlots, ever.


But the farmers that use feedlots combat these issues by administering low doses of antibiotics into their feed so that the cattle can withstand the illnesses that can sweep through a facility. Because only healthy are harvested, all animals must be kept as healthy as possible to yield good production results.

Cattle roaming

What if an animal is sick on pasture?

Pre never uses sub-therapeutic antibiotics — unless an animal is sick — and only then is it taken away from the herd while it recovers. Once the animal feels better and traces of antibiotics fade from its system, it's allowed back into the herd.


But, because our farmers and cattle ranchers use healthy range practices, the animals don't get sick very often. When animals browse open spaces with plenty of sunshine, clean water, and nutrient-rich grasses to graze on, their bodies are strong enough to withstand illnesses naturally. Eliminating stress in their daily lives and allowing them to spend all day munching on natural grasses without overcrowding is well worth it. With Pre, you have one less thing to worry about because our livestock isn't dosed to look healthy; they are healthy.

Where can I find Pre near me?

How do you find out if you can eat Pre beef? Check out our store locator to discover where you can buy near you! If you don't see a close location, you can simply request Pre at your local grocery store by filling out this form. You can also purchase our grass-fed and finished beef on Amazon fresh or through our websiteYour butcher will be happy to know that they are providing meat to someone who cares deeply about their food. If you would like to become a beef geek, all you have to do is join our email list. You will receive information on how to get delicious offers, events, recipes, and more! 


At Pre, we desire to take your food in a whole new direction, backward, if you will. Because we believe the best farming practices came before industrialization. It isn't about the "next big thing," but the first big thing: Pre-industrialization. We are pretty old-school about that. Our team is dedicated to new ways of thinking about meat production and sustainable farm practices to provide a better product and one that will set the gold standard for future generations.

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