We're spoiled. You're spoiled. I'm spoiled - Americans in general are spoiled. No, this isn't a political rant. Those things don't belong on a blog and frankly, there are few very bloggers who are actually qualified to rage against "the man" without looking stupid.
Americans are spoiled by our endless food choices and although it's great to live in a country with abundant, cheap food it has definitely spawned some spoiled, whiny folks who want all people to eat the same way.
Except no two people have the same dietary requirements, restrictions, desires or tastes. Additionally, no two people have the same income restraints that play a massive role in the quality, quantity and type of food that ends up in the refrigerator. There are folks like the Ninja who will eat pretty much anything (except cottage cheese) and then there are folks like me who like meat, carbs, meat, dairy, meat and fruit [and meat]. It's asinine to try to force us to eat the same things because I would starve and he would inflate like a balloon from eating all the things I didn't want.
I previously blogged that this restaurant in Philadelphia was going to be serving horsemeat on its menu. However, the chef/owner recently decided to take horsemeat off the menu because he was receiving death threats. Why is it ok to threaten to kill humans over animal lives? I will never understand how folks can have so much hate built up against others.
Furthermore, regardless of the fact that Valley Meat Company in Roswell, New Mexico, has met all the requirements for federal inspection and have been given the "everything is OK" checkmark, the USDA still hasn't sent an inspector to the plant. Why are so many people dragging their feet? This is an opportunity to jumpstart the economy in Roswell and improve the welfare of unwanted horses.
I've already listed the advantages of horse slaughter but if you don't want to go back and read my previous posts on the topic, I've written them again below:
1. Job creation - The plant would create approximately 100 jobs for Roswell area residents and during an economic recession when so many folks are wishing for a decent job - voila! Reopening plants will increase the number of jobs and boost local economies.
2. Exports - the U.S. slaughtered 94,000 horses in 2005, the last full year of horse slaughter before federal inspection funding was repealed in 2007. Without a slaughter plant in the U.S., more than 197,000 horses were exported to other North American countries last year for slaughter. That's double the number from 2007 slaughter exports. What does that mean?
3. Animal Welfare - It means thousands of horses have endured excruciatingly long drives to Canada or Mexico on trains or trucks that aren't exactly the most welfare-friendly. Opening a slaughter plant in the U.S. would prevent thousands of horses from being improperly transported across U.S. borders.
4. Horse meat is a delicacy - maybe not to you or I, but in several other countries around the world horse meat is consumed quite often and is a staple in many diets. The U.S. is missing out on valuable export dollars by not opening horse slaughter plants. For example, between January and November of 2012, the UK imported ~$80,000 worth of horsemeat into the UK. That doesn't include the rest of the EU, Japan, China or the Asia-Pacific region. In short, this could provide a boost to the total agriculture GDP. Every little bit helps right?
Growing up, our parents told us to mind our own business if said business didn't affect us. I believe the same rules apply to those who are opposed to horse slaughter, but will never eat horse meat, own a horse or have a stake in the industry and are simply chiming in because they think eating horsemeat is wrong. If the horsemeat is just to be exported to other countries, why invest so much time and pure hatred towards those trying to improve the local economy, welfare of horses and provide more protein to a hungry world.
I deeply care about not only my own horses, but about every other horse in the U.S. I am a lifelong horse owner and will fight for measures that improve the welfare of those animals who are unwanted.
So again, I ask you - what do you think? Weigh in below.
Until next time,
~ Buzzard ~
Labels: animal rights, animal welfare, animal wellbeing, exotic foods, exports, feeding the world, food security, FSIS, horse meat, horse slaughter, horsemeat, horses, meat, slaughter, USDA