There are currently no horse slaughter plants in the U.S., and for good reason -- they treat horses with exceptional cruelty, pollute local water supplies, lower property values, fill the air with a foul stench and are a drain on local economies.
Unfortunately, the 2011 Agriculture Appropriations bill passed without a prohibition on funding inspections for horse slaughterhouses. Without that language -- which had been included in every Agriculture Appropriations budget for the past five years -- slaughter facilities are free to set up shop in the United States.
Americans don't raise horses for food and we do not eat horse meat. But horse slaughter proponents are taking steps to open horse slaughter plants in the United States. Unless citizens object, horses may soon be commercially slaughtered in our communities for human consumption overseas.
Please urge Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack to reject any application to operate a horse slaughter facility in the United States.
Dear Secretary Vilsack,
[Your comments will be inserted here.]
As an American citizen, I respectfully ask that you reject all applications to reestablish horse slaughter plants in the United States and grant the petition before the USDA that would deem horse meat unfit for human consumption.
Please consider the following points:
- According to a national poll conducted in January 2012, 80% of Americans strongly favor a horse slaughter ban.
- Horse slaughter will benefit only foreign-owned corporations who profit by catering to overseas specialty markets.
- Horse slaughter plants are not clean/green enterprises. They are economic and environmental nightmares: polluting local water supplies, lowering property values and filling the air with a foul stench. Six years after the closure of a horse slaughter plant in Kaufman, Texas, that community is still trying to recover from the damage.
- Americans do not raise horses for food or eat horse meat, and horse meat poses a serious health risk to those who consume it. Horses are routinely given drugs that the FDA prohibits for food animals because of their toxicity to humans.
Secretary Vilsack, you can prevent the inevitable damage that will be caused by bringing horse slaughter for human consumption back to this country. Denying any applications to operate horse slaughter plants in the U.S would protect horses, human health and the vitality of our country's communities.
Thank you for your consideration.
[Your name here]