US American horses exported for meat

This video from the USA says about itself:

1 Dec 2011

The last equine slaugherhouse in the United States finally shut down, but American horses continue to go to slaughter across our southern and northern borders in record numbers.

From Alternet in the USA:

By Andrew Wasley

The Brutal and Secretive Trade of American Horses Killed For Their Meat

Few Americans are aware that our country’s horses are being exported and slaughtered abroad to supply other nations’ taste for a meat that’s shunned at home.

March 15, 2013

This article was published in partnership with

Herded down a concrete shute, the horses — black and brown and grey; fat, healthy, thin, lame — have little idea of the fate that awaits them. But one by one, the horses are separated from those behind, a metal trapdoor swinging down to confine each to a metal box. There’s blood and filth on the walls and floor. Flies buzz.

A man leans over the horse — the animal freezes at first, then jerks forward slightly, obviously terrified — and stabs a knife forcefully into the top of the horse’s head. The horse crumples to the ground and the man stabs it again. The side of the box opens, discharging the body onto a stained floor. A metal chain is hooked around a hoof, the horse swings up and onto a moving production line. Men set upon each body as they come through, slicing away skin and tissue and butchering the exposed flesh.

The footage illustrating this grisly scene in a Mexican abattoir offers a rare glimpse into a brutal and secretive trade that few Americans are aware of — the export and slaughter of homegrown US horses to supply a meat that’s shunned at home but popular with diners overseas. Each year, thousands of horses — abandoned pets, ex-racehorses, farm animals — are rounded up and trucked across the country south into Mexico, or north into Canada, for killing and processing and dispatching abroad, many to Europe, a major hub of horsemeat consumption.

It’s a murky and often-informal business, with numerous buyers, sellers and middlemen in on the game. And it’s part of a much bigger, international trade in horses and horsemeat now in the spotlight in the wake of the European horsemeat scandal. This was initially triggered by the discovery of equine meat in “beef” burgers on sale in Ireland and the UK, and has now widened to include numerous meat products.

Seizing their chance, long-time critics of the horsemeat industry have stepped up efforts to close the trade down, citing appalling horse suffering and health risks to humans through controversial drugs entering the food chain.

For welfare campaigners, the cruelty begins well before the slaughterhouse. Most horses destined for the international meat market begin their journey being trucked to auction houses across the US. From there, they are transported on to feedlots, and then exported across the border to slaughter facilities in Mexico or Canada. Activists say that horses are frequently crammed into vehicles — many not suitable for carrying livestock — and forced to endure lengthy journeys without adequate food, water and rest, leading to injuries and exhaustion.

Poor conditions at feedlots have also been highlighted. The pressure group Animals Angels last year investigated a major livestock auction and horse feedlot in New Mexico, and claimed to have found “multiple horses in a bad condition… emaciated, [with] untreated wounds, open cuts, lame, [with] eye injuries.”

Graphic pictures show a number of other horses sprawled on the ground, apparently too sick to get up, and an aborted foal abandoned in the dust. Conditions were so bad that investigators say they pleaded with the auction authorities to euthanise a number of the horses.

Cheryl Jacobson, from the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), says such scenes are all too common in the US horse trade — and blames lenient penalties for fostering a culture of poor treatment: “As at [the New Mexico auction] we’ve seen that if they get caught for animal welfare problems the costs incurred are still not [a deterrent], it’s still worthwhile.”

16 thoughts on “US American horses exported for meat

  1. Hi. This has been going on for years. Longer than I have been alive. If you have been following the news(and my blog) you would have heard that lawmakers have re-legalized horse slaughter again. In less than three weeks, the first US slaughterhouse for horses will open in New Mexico. In fact, one of my blogger friends, Richard, over on Straight From The Horses Mouth, one of our leading advocates for our horses, exposed where the horse meat was coming from that was contaminating the European food supply. It was coming out of a business in Houston. You can read more about horse slaughter, this travesty, and his work over on But thank you for putting this info out on your blog to your followers in your circle. There is still a small percentage of the American population who are unaware of this travesty because they are wrapped up their own little world. Things will go seriously downhill when this slaughterhouse in NM and other places start to open. It is NOT safe to eat horse meat because there is Bute(a carcinogen) in it and it could or already has contaminated our food supply. These slaughterhouses in particular smell incredibly bad and produce a lot of waste amongst other things. It is just horrid and gruesome. Our horses are our history and our backbone and need our protection and our help as they have protected us and helped his throughout our history. It is only right and fair that we help them out in this battle. Plz keep blogging once in a while about this. You have a great voice and people listen to you and we need people like you to speak on behalf of our horses. And I encourage you to at least check out Richard’s blog and even follow it if you feel so inclined. And that goes the same for your readers. Maybe you can give a shout out for him too. Thanks! šŸ™‚


  2. Pingback: Versatile Blogger Award, thanks tuttacronaca! | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  3. Pingback: Animal abuse at United States slaughterhouse | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  4. Pingback: Versatile Blogger Award, thanks tuttacronaca! | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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