The U.K., China, Russia, Taiwan, and the European Union ban or limit the use of ractopamine, a drug that promotes growth in pigs, cattle, and turkeys. Ractopamine is linked with serious health and behavioral problems in animals, and human studies are limited but evoke concerns, according to the Center for Food Safety.
The U.S. meat industry uses ractopamine to accelerate weight gain and promote feed efficiency and leanness in pigs, cattle, and turkeys. The drug mimics stress hormones.
So how did this drug wind up in our food supply?