An anti-horse-slaughter group says the numbers released from a leading pro-slaughter group don’t add up.
Jo-Claire Corcoran, with the Equine Welfare Alliance (EWA), says the group did a study of claims about abandoned U.S. horses and very few were substantiated. She says those that were, were of horses in the southwestern states – rejects from Mexican slaughter plants.
Corcoran also says claims from the International Equine Business Association’s Sue Wallis about the number of U.S. horses going to Mexican and Canadian slaughter plants are inflated.
“Three months, 48,000 horses? Well, that’s 192,000 a year. That number’s grossly exaggerated. They’re not slaughtering horses at that rate,” says Corcoran.
Wallis and her association are working to open domestic slaughter plants in the U.S. to resume horse processing since Congress removed the ban. Wallis applauds the recent lifting of a temporary EU ban on horse meat from U.S. horses.
Corcoran, however, says the horse slaughter industry is in for a rude awakening when the European Union’s regulations on drug residue tracing go into effect next year, which she says will essentially shut down the market. Corcoran tells Brownfield Ag News, “In essence, when that happens, there won’t be any horses eligible. The U.S. does not have a passport program. Canada does not have a passport program.” Corcoran says Mexico doesn’t have a good tracing program in place either.
She says 70% of the market of U.S. horses slaughtered for horse meat goes to the E.U. and that 80% of Americans are opposed to horse slaughter. Corcoran says U.S. horses are not raised as livestock and should not be treated as such.