Colorado bill will criminalize the export of horses for slaughter


Colorado lawmakers will discuss a bill on Thursday [Feb 16, 2023] aimed at protecting horses, burros and mules from being slaughtered for human consumption.

While it is illegal to slaughter horses in the United States, it is not illegal to transport them out of the country for that reason. 

The Prohibit Equine Slaughter for Human Consumption bill would criminalize any involvement in a horse becoming food for people, including exporting the animals.

Senator Sonya Jaquez Lewis wants to stop the transport of Colorado horses to slaughterhouses. She is a co-sponsor of the bill.

“It’s brutal, it’s tragic, it’s so cruel and many of these horses are adoptable,” she told CBS Colorado’s Kelly Werthmann. “Americans cherish horses. They’re the symbol of freedom in the West, and we want to cherish them that way.”

Jaquez Lewis said a recent survey showed about 90% of horses sent to slaughterhouses are still adoptable. She wants to see the animals given a second chance at a better life.

She likened the bill to a consumer protection law of sorts. It would be an unclassified misdemeanor, punishable with fines reaching upwards of $10,000.

“You cannot transport these horses for human consumption, and if you are caught you will have an initial fine and then if you continue to do it, the fine will get steeper and steeper, as high as several thousand dollars,” said Jaquez Lewis.

When the bill does become law, Colorado will be only the fifth state in the country with a ban on the sale of horse meat for human consumption, along with California, Illinois, New Jersey and Texas.

Source: CBS News Colorado. Featured Image: Channel 7 News Colorado.

Tuesday’s Horse

Official Blog of The Fund for Horses

4 thoughts on “Colorado bill will criminalize the export of horses for slaughter”

  1. I still don’t get it AMERICANS DON’T EAT HORSEMEAT. We don’t want them to eat our horses. Eat somebody else’s horses. Let Mexico and Canada do their own dirty work.We need to shut sown all the meat killer auctions in this country as it was in 2007. who started them up again and why.MONEY MONEY MONEY


    1. The meat auctions were never shut down, only the slaughterhouses – that is the problem. The number of US horses shipped to Canada and Mexico exploded once that happened. Here in Canada the vast majority, just like in the US, would like to see the shipment of horses for slaughter stop as well. It would decimate the Canadian industry as most horses slaughtered here are from the US. People here do not eat horse meat either apart from some in Quebec.


  2. Avg age equine sent to slaughter for human consumption 5yo. Most filled w Bute & filled w near 300 other additives Not for use in meat animals. Pregnant & immunocompromised eat. Kidney failure & cancers develop. Not SAFE. Gotta stop!


  3. This is the bill that has a major loophole allowing horses to be sent to zoos and other facilities


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