Farmers routinely feed animal remains, blood, and manure—particularly chicken feces—to cattle. Although the USDA prohibits the feeding of ruminant (e.g., cows, sheep, and goats) remains to ruminants, this rule is poorly enforced and does not preclude many other risky practices, including the feeding of blood, manure, and nonruminants (e.g., chickens, pigs, etc.) to cows. Cattle remains are also fed to chickens, whose wastes are then fed back to cows. PCRM recommends a ban on all these practices.
Those rapid fire cracking sounds you hear are the sounds of "straws breaking backs" across the nation.
The Mad Cow incident is causing some light to be cast into some very dark places. These practices have been revealed in a few books and articles, but mostly we've chosen not to know. Now we know, and even the most fervent Republican doesn't trust this administration to keep our food safe.
Coincidentally, our closest Burger King just closed.
If organic coops were publicly traded, their share prices would be going mad. At the prices that middle class folk will soon be paying for meat we'll be eating a lot less of it. On the other hand, poor people will soon have be able to eat very inexpensive steak -- if they choose.