July 5, 2020

Valley Meats in NM Gets USDA OK for Horse Slaughter

Horse slaughter is set to begin at Valley Meats  Co. in Roswell, NM and facilities in Missouri and Iowa will be approved in the coming days, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA’s FSIS). The agency issued Valley Meats a grant of  inspection clearing the way for the company to become the first facility to slaughter horses in the U.S. since the practice was banned in 2006.

HorseIn 2006, Congress withdrew funding for inspectors at horse slaughtering facilities creating a de facto ban. The Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) requires federal inspection of animals slaughtered for human food.  The funding was briefly restored in the 2012 budget but not included in 2014 budget, so what will happen with Valley Meats and the other facilites is unclear at this point.

Although horse meat cannot be sold as human food in the U.S., it can be processed for export at facilities where no other animals are slaughtered and no other meat is processed. “Because of FSIS’ stringent inspection process, testing capabilities, and labeling requirements, American consumers should not be concerned that horse meat will be labeled and sold as the meat of another species, as happened earlier this year in other countries,” the agency said in an a consumer update.

Horse slaughter is a controversial issue in the U.S. Many animal rights groups have declared their opposition, including the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA )“Moving ahead with the costly proposition of funding horse slaughter inspections is wasteful, cruel and reckless,” says Nancy Perry, Senior Vice President of ASPCA Government Relations. “Recent polling shows that 70% of New Mexicans, 70% of Missourians and 71% of Iowans, along with the overwhelming majority of Americans, oppose the slaughter of U.S. horses for human consumption.”



    Well count me in with the 70% of Americans who oppose horse slaughter. The meat is toxic no matter what the proslaughter proponents say and in my opinion a form of bioterrorism. Furthermore, some shady businesses will try to slip it into our food chain until they get caught. Look what happened in Europe!

    • “The meat is toxic…” — you don’t even know the half of it. There are large populations of horses completely abandoned (after being used by drug cartels in illegal horse racing). Who knows what was put in their Wheaties?!?
      Now unfortunately, there is no one to cover the cost of their care. However, looks like we can feed them to people in other countries, so problem solved…
      This leads me to a question that’s always bothered me- if we can be so unethical & sociopathic (as to supply other countries food we know is toxic) why do we trust China & eagerly consume their products??

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