Current Progressive Cattle digital edition

Utah joins the debate to consider horse slaughter

Published on 19 July 2013

071913 cooper 1The horse slaughter debate has increased from a slow lope to a steady gallop recently. As Iowa and New Mexico have made first steps to open new slaughter facilities, more states are starting to consider the same market possibilities.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports that a Utah legislative interim commitee has requested information to determine how bad horse problems are in the Beehive State, and whether slaughterhouses could alleviate the issues.

One legislator outlined how neglected horses are growing more rampant and run heavy costs for veterinary care. In Utah, it is legal to slaughter horses for pet food, but convincing the general public that it's a good idea is no small feat.

"Eatin' Mr. Ed doesn't appeal to a lot of people," he said, "or even feeding Mr. Ed to Fido."

As for the two slaughterhouses being proposed for Roswell, New Mexico and Sigourney, Iowa; the USDA has granted approval for those respective permit. Animal rights groups such as the U.S. Humane Society argue that the motions will go nowhere, since Congress has not funded horse slaughter inspectors in the budget. Still the groups have filed a lawsuit to block the commercial processing of horse meat.

Meanwhile, a third permit, for a slaughter facility in Gallatin, Missouri is also moving forward in pursuit of a horse slaughter permit. The family owned company tells the News-Leader that the market could include humane and animal consumption of the meat products. end mark

 PHOTO courtesy of BLM