Australian horse welfare taskforce receives federal support

A horse cast off by the Thoroughbred racing industry awaits slaughter for human consumption at the Meramist Abattoir in Queenland, Australia.

The reports:

“The head of a new horse welfare taskforce, Denis Napthine, has welcomed support from federal agriculture minister David Littleproud, who has promised to make federal department resources available to the working group.

“Mr Littleproud strongly endorsed the new welfare taskforce on Friday, which has been formed to research better post-retirement outcomes for racehorses.

“This is a billion dollar industry and jurisdictions owe it to all those involved in the industry to deliver the best animal welfare outcomes for thoroughbreds.”

— Federal Agriculture Minister David Littleproud

“The nationally-focused initiative, which has been driven by Thoroughbred Breeders Australia chief executive Tom Reilly, and is being funded by trainers, breeders, bookmakers and race clubs, will feature a four-person panel headed by Dr Napthine, the former Victorian premier and racing minister.

“Champion trainers Chris Waller, Gai Waterhouse and David Hayes are among the industry leaders who have pledged funds towards the initiative. The taskforce plus any research they commission will cost in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.”

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We Say

This all sounds very lofty, but it would not be happening at all if it weren’t for the gut wrenching undercover exposé of Australian racehorses being horribly abused then brutally slaughtered telecast by ABC 7.30 last October for the world to see.

Not surprisingly, instead of acting swiftly on this issue, these gladhanders and backslappers are going to sit back, chiefly to see how little they can get away with doing while spending as little as possible and at the same time mollifying the public. This for a “billion dollar industry” that already has its own funding, who should able to figure it out for itself, perhaps set an example, maybe even become the gold standard for the rest of the racing world who all seem to have the very same problem — sending their unwanted horses to slaughter. Instead, they set their politicians to work at taxpayer expense.

Meanwhile. Nothing has stopped. Nothing has changed. Being slaughtered for human consumption continues to be the “post-retirement outcome” for a heartbreakingly large number of Australian racehorses.

Related Post

Ex-racehorses to be rehomed rather than slaughtered under new Queensland plan, Feb. 12, 2020, Tuesday’s Horse

Related Resources

Mass slaughter and abuse of racehorses undermines industry’s commitment to animal welfare, Oct 17, 2019, ABC 7.30 (Undercover Video. Warning: Graphic Content)

Australian racehorse slaughter allegations prompt investigation, Oct 18, 2019, Tuesday’s Horse

Australia opens investigation into ‘industrial’ slaughter of racehorses, Oct 22, 2019, South China Morning Post

FEATURED IMAGE: Horses cast off by the Thoroughbred racing industry await slaughter for human consumption at the Meramist Abattoir in Queensland, Australia.

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AU Racing: Peter Moody proposes industry ‘knackery’ for unwanted horses

Peter Moody, racehorse trainer, Victoria, Australia.


Victoria’s former top trainer Peter Moody believes the racing industry should consider operating its own facility to humanely manage the end of life process for retired racehorses that cannot be rehomed.

Why not have a industry knackery he tweeted . . .

Before we decide what we think about the ‘Moody plan’, let’s define ‘knackery’ for those not used to the term. A lot of people, including ourselves, have seen “knacker’s yard” and “slaughterhouse” used interchangeably. So let’s set that straight first.

A knacker is a person in the trade of rendering animals that have died on farms or are unfit for human consumption, such as horses that can no longer work.  A knacker’s yard or knackery is different from a slaughterhouse, where animals are slaughtered for human consumption.

Now we have clarified that, how do you feel about the ‘Moody plan’ of euthanizing horses and sending their remains to a knackery, or rendering facility, as opposed to sending them to slaughter? Put that way, it isn’t a difficult choice to make.

Chris Lynch replied pointing out:


Our first reaction to the ‘Moody plan’ is it would mean a lot of young, healthy horses who have done nothing wrong other than not win enough for their connections will be killed.

Also highly and extremely important,  the ‘Moody plan’ will do nothing to curb the common problem of overbreeding, a big issue that exists in most horse racing nations around the world.

Then there are horses who are run “into the ground” and become injured so they are no longer “of value” to racing .  .  . or seemingly anyone else. What a quick and easy way for owners to get rid of them.

Yet, the ‘Moody plan’ would mean fewer would be abused and go to slaughter, right? We would hope anyway.

Trouble is an owner can make a bit of extra money selling a racehorse to the local slaughterhouse. Plus it costs to have a horse euthanized and for a renderer to handle the remains of the animal, right? But carcass disposal is where Moody is ahead of the game, suggesting that racing itself institutes and runs its own knackery (or rendering) facilities.

Whatever the outcome, it seems that death and racing are forever intrinsically linked for the horse.

So. What do you make of the ‘Moody plan’?

•  Source: reports »

•  Read more about rendering here »