Date of this Version
Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics 43(2):233–250
Although several studies have estimated economic impacts of antimicrobials for growth promotion, little is known about economic impacts of the common animal health management strategy known as metaphylaxis: administering antimicrobials to groups of animals to prevent disease. This article develops a new framework to map animal disease to producer profitability and determine societal economic impacts surrounding metaphylactic use of antimicrobials in beef cattle production. Results indicate the direct net return value of metaphylaxis to the U.S. fed cattle industry is at least $532 million. Beef producer surplus losses of $1.8 billion would be associated with eliminating metaphylaxis.