Horse slaughter — back again?
Most New Mexicans I have known are compassionate, intelligent people. Like everywhere in the US, there will be those few people who think that eating any animal is “ok” but they are always in the minority – no matter what state you are in. Only about a 100 jobs would be created by Valley Meat if their plant opens to processing horses as meat. Considering most Americans point of view on horse slaughter, the subsequent loss of tourism and the jobs that service that industry in Roswell, NM may have a greater impact on their local economy. ~ HfH
From: The New Mexican
For a few more days, at least, New Mexico will not be the home of a horse-slaughtering plant.
A lawsuit by Attorney General Gary King asking that the plant be prevented from opening will go before a district court judge on Friday, and representatives of the Roswell-area slaughterhouse also say they are waiting to see whether they will receive a required wastewater discharge permit from the state Environment Department. The hearing Friday, to be heard by Judge Matthew Wilson in Santa Fe, will consider whether to extend a temporary restraining order or issue a preliminary injunction, either of which would stop the plant from opening. Owners had promised to be slaughtering horses on New Year’s Day. That didn’t happen.
Removing the emotional bits of the argument — and they are powerful because of the connection between people and horses — King is focusing on the slaughterhouse company’s record, which he says has failed to comply with state environmental and safety laws over the years. The company’s attorney says King’s charges are unfounded; Judge Wilson, of course, will decide. A separate federal lawsuit is being heard as well, and the whole opening could be upended if the company doesn’t win the necessary permits. There is always the possibility, too, that the U.S. Congress will return to a previous practice of not funding inspectors for these plants; if there are no inspectors, the plants can’t open and the horse-slaughtering business can’t take hold in the United States.
The issue of whether horses should be slaughtered for food is highly charged, especially given the reality that the country has an overpopulation of horses. Killing the iconic animal for meat might be considered cruel, but so is starving to death.
The company, Valley Meat, says its business will bring work to the Roswell area, reviving a dormant industry. When the cattle business was hard hit by drought, the slaughterhouse closed. Since, Valley Meat owners decided to use the facility to slaughter horses and send the meat out of the country.
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Habitat for Horses is always on the lookout for a few great people at our ranches. The work is unique, the animals are special and we want folks who both know and understand the special connection our animals need.