Pork lovers beware. Consumer Reports tested 240 pork-chop and ground-pork products made in the U.S. and found the presence of both growth drugs and dangerous bacteria.
The consumer testing organization said between 3% and 7% of samples were found to contain salmonella, staphylococcus aureus and listeria monocytogenes bacteria, which are known to cause serious illness. Enterococcus, which can lead to urinary-tract infections was found in 11% of the samples.
Pork chops were found to harbor less bacteria than ground pork. But yersinia enterocolitica, a bacteria that can cause pain and diarrhea, was identified in fully 69% of the pork samples.
Consumer Reports also found low levels of ractopamine, a growth drug used by farmers. Ractopamine is banned in Europe and parts of Asia, but is approved for use in the U.S.
Some pork samples were contaminated with antibiotic-resistant bacteria, likely as a result of antibiotic overuse during livestock production.