Congress has restored funding for US inspectors to oversee horse slaughter, paving the way for slaughter and processing to resume for the first time since 2006. Animal rights groups are livid.
What to do about growing numbers of neglected and abandoned horses in the US is an ethical conundrum that Congress and President Obama quietly addressed this month via a spending bill: bring back the slaughterhouses.
A Department of Agriculture bill, signed into law Nov. 18, reinstates federal funding for USDA inspection of horse meat intended for human consumption, which Congress had withheld since 2006. That de facto ban on horse slaughter has now come to an end, to the outrage of the animal rights community, amid reports that US horse owners were simply shipping their animals to Mexico and Canada for slaughter and processing.
According to a pro-slaughter group called United Horsemen, meat processors are now considering opening facilities in at least a half-dozen states, including Georgia, North Dakota, Nebraska, Oregon, Wyoming, Montana, and possibly Idaho.