Horse Meat in Your Burgers?

March 31, 2013

While many Americans recoil at the revelations of horsemeat being ground in with beef to make hamburger patties in Ireland, England, and throughout Europe, our United States Department of Agriculture seems close to approving Valley Meat Company’s horse slaughtering plant in Roswell, New Mexico, according to the New York Times. Roswell of all places.

The last plant that slaughtered horses for meat in the U.S. closed in 2007 after Congress approved an appropriations bill that forbade the USDA from financing inspection of horsemeat plants. Valley Meat sued Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Food Inspection Service director Al Almanza saying that failing to offer inspection of horse meat violated the Federal Meat Inspection Act.

Oklahoma legislators are trying to pass legislation to allow Oklahoma Meat Co. of Washington, Oklahoma to process (read slaughter) horse meat for sale abroad.

Companies such as Tesco, Nestle and Ikea have all pulled ground meat and meatballs from their shelves and kitchens in 14 countries because tests showed they contained some horsemeat when labeled 100 percent beef.

While the company claims no horsemeat will be sold for food in the U.S., how do we know? How long were horse and cow meat ground together in Ireland, England and Europe before someone tested and found out?

Currently U.S. horses bound for slaughter are sent to Canada and Mexico for processing.

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