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Originally published May 1 2004

Insanity! The FDA says the only way to dispose of chicken litter is to feed it to cows

by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, NaturalNews Editor

It's almost too bizarre to be true: the FDA can't decide whether to ban the practice of allowing chicken fecal matter to be fed to cattle because, the FDA says, what else are they supposed to do with all that chicken litter? In other words, cows are living waste disposal machines who eat -- get this -- chicken shit by the ton. And then you eat the cows (if you're a red meat eater, that is). It's sort of like eating second-hand chicken shit, only riskier because now you also have the risk of mad cow disease, too.

Here's an actual quote from the story, stated by Stephen Sundlof, the director of the FDA's Center for Veterinary Medicine: "...adding chicken litter to cattle feed is one of the primary methods of waste disposal for the chicken growers..." I found that statement astonishing. That the FDA can say, with a straight face, that the only way to get rid of chicken litter is to feed it to cows is, well, bordering on insane. The FDA is also reluctant to ban the practice of feeding cattle blood to cows. "What are we going to do with all this blood?" seems to be the cry from the FDA. The answer? Well, feed it to the cattle, of course!

You know, here's an idea: maybe we should stop thinking of cattle as waste disposal machines. If these are creatures that humans will one day eat, maybe we should be feeding them foods that, if not healthy, are at least sane. You can't take every waste product from farms and chicken factories and just feed it all to cows. It's sick, it's unethical, and it's unhealthy. Perhaps even criminal. And it is precisely these sort of practices that promote the risk of mad cow disease. If consumers really knew what was going on behind closed doors in the cattle industry, they'd boycott red meat for life (like I have). The new slogan for the beef industry should be, "Beef. It's FDA-approved second-hand chicken shit."

A mountain of chicken dung - among other things - is preventing the Food and Drug Administration from banning blood, chicken waste and restaurant leftovers from cattle feed, a top administration official said yesterday. Tainted feed from a Canadian mill is believed to have infected the Yakima County Holstein cow that set off the U.S. mad cow crisis in December. But just days after the agency recommended bans on the widespread practice of adding such things as blood, chicken excrement and restaurant table scraps to feed, it was deluged with troubling feedback, according to Stephen Sundlof, the director of the FDA's Center for Veterinary Medicine.

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