Danish owners face waiting list to feed their horses to the lions

HORSEMEAT — BBC News reports:

Horse owners in Denmark face a six-month wait if they want to feed their recently deceased equines to the lions.

It’s become so popular to donate the carcass of your dead horse to Copenhagen Zoo as food for its carnivores that there’s now a waiting list, Denmark’s TV2 reports.

Given the choice between having your deceased animal collected and recycled by a private company for a fee of up to 3,700 krone ($584; £443), more owners are looking into the “cheaper and more natural” option of zoo donation, the TV says.

The zoo alternative is free, the Copenhagen Post notes, and owners find their service more comforting than the thought of their beloved animal becoming biodiesel and meatballs.

Part of the food chain

“When the horse is eaten by lions, it is part of the food chain,” horse owner Karina Fisker says. She said it was important to her that her horse Vorning Hestepension didn’t suffer any distress.

“The horses are our one and everything. It’s all very emotional,” she told TV2.

The zoo’s press office says that the waiting list tends to expand in the autumn after owners give their horses “one last summer in the pasture”.

But horse meat is only part of the diet for Copenhagen Zoo’s lions, tigers and brown bears.

“They eat a lot of horsemeat, but they also vary their diet with rabbits, calves and a single goat or zebra every now and then,” the zoo’s Jacob Munkholm Hoeck says.

Read more »

So an owner has their horse put down and the zoo picks up the carcass? How do you feel about this?

Killing Horses for Zoo Meat in the U.S.

Bravo Packing in New Jersey have been slaughtering horses to supply meat to U.S. zoos for as long as we have been around. That’s 15 years at least. Tuesday’s Horse was told they have been in this business much longer.

Vivian called to see if Bravo Packing are still open and slaughtering horses for zoo meat. They are. She didn’t get much further than that.  The woman who answered the phone couldn’t hang up fast enough the moment she realized Vivian was not a prospective buyer.

Kwanzaa, a young South African lion at Cameron Park Zoo in Waco, Texas, celebrates his birthday with a cake made from 10 pounds of horse meat, plus whipped cream and a carrot. Image: Seattle Times 2007.
Kwanzaa, a young South African lion at Cameron Park Zoo in Waco, Texas, celebrates his birthday with a cake made from 10 pounds of horse meat, plus whipped cream and a carrot. Image: Seattle Times 2007.

Zoos continue to be the largest consumers of horse meat in the United States. The meat from several thousand horses ends up in the freezers of U.S. zoos every year.

Slaughtering and transporting horses for human consumption is still illegal in the State of Jersey.

Featured Image Source: Zoo lion sunning himself. Wikimedia Commons.

To recess or not to recess; to call or not to call

US Capitol Dome and Flag.
US Capitol Dome and Flag. Click to donate to The Horse Fund. Thank you.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — August is typically a time when Congress adjourns for the month and lawmakers return to their constituencies — or in other words, go home.

This is not a typical Congress and August it seems will not be a typical month. Senators are probably the least likely to get out of town even though they seem hard to find except for Sen. Mitch McConnell who is probably afraid to go home.

It may not seem like a good to call. Anytime is a good time!

Offices continue to be staffed regardless of our lawmakers’ whereabouts, so please continue to call. If you cannot connect with anyone at your lawmakers’ D.C. offices, then please call them at their local office nearest you.

Look up your two U.S. Senators here »

Look up your U.S. Representatives here (need your zip +4 code) »

Please continue calling the U.S. House to end horse slaughter »

Join the Horse on the Hill™ Gang »

In the meantime, D.C. appears to be melting down quicker than the Wicked Witch of the West in The Wizard of Oz.  And not from the heat outside.

The Washington Post reports:

Talks between the White House and the Senate’s top Republican and Democrat broke up Tuesday with no progress on raising the country’s debt ceiling, an impasse that threatens a financial crisis if left unresolved.

The Senate and House have 12 joint working days before Sept. 29, when the Treasury Department says it would no longer be able to pay all of the government’s bills unless Congress acts. A default would likely set off a major disruption to the world financial system, with a stock market crash and surging interest rates that could send the economy into a recession.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has urged Congress for months to raise the debt limit, but the White House has lacked a unified message and run into resistance on Capitol Hill, where Democrats and Republicans are at odds on key tax and spending issues.

Diversionary Tactic?

This is possibly a diversionary tactic so we worry while certain among them go about their dirty work unnoticed.

Stay Focused

Do not let this allow you to take your eye off the ball. Keep the pressure on legislators. Don’t let them get away with a darn thing.

Calling all Americans to call their lawmakers in Washington to take a strong stand on behalf of American horses. Photographer unknown.
Calling all Americans to call their lawmakers in Washington to take a strong stand on behalf of American horses. Photographer unknown.

Online Contact

We are not unsympathetic and realize there are some of you who do not feel comfortable making phone calls.

This is a good time to use your lawmakers online contact form. Use the “Look up …” links above to find them. Tip: Write up what you want to say. Review it until you are comfortable. Copy and paste!

Our Legislative Wish List

Here are a few items on our Legislative Wish List for horses. We feel they are all reasonable and doable. What do you want? Add yours in comments.

  1. We want horse slaughter banned.
  2. We want the export of horses for slaughter banned.
  3. We want federally protected wild horses and burros left on public lands to live out their lives at liberty, unharassed by the federal government, as the original law intended.
  4. We want a humane plan developed and implemented to relocate wild horses and burros currently stockpiled  by the federal government and its contractors back to their original lands, or lands similar to the ones they were taken from.
  5. We want our wild horses and burros made safe from any form of human use or interference.
  6. We want the Horse Protection Act strengthened so there is not a single loophole wherein serial animal abusers can get away with the obnoxious and grossly cruel practice of horse soring.
  7. We want a federally appointed Commissioner of Horse Racing to govern what has become a massively abusive and murderous industry rife with drugging and cheating who is also empowered to work with federal authorities to send its culprits to jail for race fixing among other egregious crimes.

What would you like to see? Join us in comments.

Take Action in Your State

Action at the State level concerning slaughter and live export for slaughter is also critical in case we have any sort of failure at the Federal level.

Learn how here »

Thank you everyone. You are massively important to the success of these campaigns and we appreciate your efforts.

Horse meat trial shines light on key part of international fraud

Frozen meat adulterated with horse intended for burgers. Photograph: City of London Police.
Frozen meat adulterated with horse intended for burgers. Photograph: City of London Police.

The Guardian| Felicity Lawrence | July 26, 2017 | Full Article

The conviction of three men in London for conspiracy to defraud by selling horse mislabelled as beef marks the end of the UK police operation to identify the criminals in its jurisdiction behind the horsemeat scandal of 2013.

Operation Boldo, run by the City of London police’s specialist fraud division, tracked just one of the trails of dodgy meat that were exposed when the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) published tests at the beginning of 2013.

These showed that burgers and ready meals on sale in leading retailers and fast food outlets contained undeclared horse and pig DNA. The FSAI report sparked testing across Europe, which exposed industrial-scale adulteration of the food supply.

Investigations that followed in the UK led to others being charged with or convicted of regulatory offences relating to horse slaughter or selling beefburgers containing undeclared offal, and a conviction for labelling goat as lamb but, four and a half years on, this is the first UK conviction for selling mislabelled horsemeat. • Keep reading »

The Daily Mail | July 27, 2017 | Full Article

A businessman was today found guilty of being part of a near-£200,000 conspiracy to pass off 30 tonnes of horsemeat as beef, much of which went on to enter the food chain.

The court heard how Danish-owned company FlexiFoods would buy horsemeat and beef from suppliers across Europe and have it delivered to Dinos in Tottenham, North London.

Labels and paperwork were fabricated to make the mixed meat appear like pure beef, before it was sold on to food manufacturers making products for a ‘vast range of well-known companies’, prosecutor Jonathan Polnay told the trial.

The businessman was caught after equine microchips were discovered in some packages. The animals had not been sold for slaughter. • Read more »

USDA warns Pennsylvania restaurant that serving horse meat violates federal law

Cure in Pittsburgh. Bill Addison.

PITTSBURG, Pa. — We have been following the story of the Pittsburgh area restaurant serving steak tartare made with horse meat. Because it was making national headlines we figured you have been following it too.

We write about it now that the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has stepped in. It is interesting how FSIS handled it pointing out their concern — it is illegal to import horse meat into the U.S.

CBS News Pittsburgh reported:

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has warned a Pittsburgh restaurant to not serve horse meat again.

KDKA-TV first reported that Cure Restaurant hosted a special dinner with Canadian chefs on May 8 that included horse tartare*.

Cure released this statement from chef/co-owner Justin Severino:

“On Monday night we hosted a collaborative dinner with chefs from Canada, a Québécois feast. One of the courses included horse tartare, which is traditional Québécois. It was sourced from a sustainable horse farm in Alberta, Canada. This dish was available for one night only and it is not part of the Cure menu.”

A USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service spokesperson says Severino received a warning letter for illegally bringing horsemeat into the country.

So to clarify, it is illegal to import or export horse meat according to FSIS.

SustainableTable.com defines sustainable farming as:

“In simplest terms, sustainable agriculture is the production of food, fiber, or other plant or animal products using farming techniques that protect the environment, public health, human communities, and animal welfare.”

How can the meat from any horse other than one raised in a vacuum be made fit for human consumption?

Horses bred and raised in modern day societies are given a myriad of drugs throughout their lifetimes containing known carcinogens prohibiting their meat from entering the human food chain. This is an established fact.

Inspections necessary to export horse meat from the United States are not taking place because the U.S. government chose not to pay for them again in this year’s fiscal budget.

Interestingly, the USDA shows in their move against the Cure restaurant that it is equally illegal to import horse meat into the U.S. and it’s not just a matter of taste for which the average American has little to no appetite.

Eater.com reported that:

The dish did not sit well with animal welfare advocates who have launched a Change.org petition calling on Pennsylvania governor Tom Wolf to make a public statement declaring the practice of serving horse meat illegal. It’s since received more than 1,600 signatures.

H.R. 113

Take action. Contact your U.S. Representatives and ask them to co-sponsor and use their influence to pass the SAFE Act — H.R. 113 — that bans horse slaughter and closes the live export of horses for slaughter loophole. Here’s how »

H.R. 113 currently has 119 co-sponsors.

Let’s work hard to get a majority of the U.S. House to co-sponsor H.R. 113 — 218** — useful leverage in busting this bill out of all the Committees and Subcommittees it has been assigned to. Tough, but together we can do it.

Steak tartare is a meat dish made from finely chopped or minced raw beef or horsemeat. It is often served with onions, capers and seasonings (the latter typically incorporating fresh ground pepper and Worcestershire sauce), sometimes with a raw egg yolk, and often on rye bread.

** The number of voting representatives in the House is fixed by law at no more than 435, proportionally representing the population of the 50 states.

Cure in Pittsburgh. Bill Addison. Eater.com.