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Horse meat: is it harmful?

11 years ago | 28488 Views
After hearing a few of my friends in the UK complaining about horse meat being found in their super markets, fast food outlets, etc - I did a bit of research to find out if horse meat was really harmful to humans.

Horse meat per se is not toxic. The issues is that because generally horses are not raised as a food source they are treated with bute (Phenylbutazone).

Bute is a known carcinogen. The Food and Drug Administration "FDA" (an agency of the United States Department of Health and Human Services) bans any food animal from taking it. The agency has never set safe levels for the drug; it sets safe levels for many contaminants but it does not set safe levels for carcinogens.

If the raising of the horses avoided the use of Phenylbutazone (as is the requirement for beef) then there is no toxicity present.

The British food authorities are busy testing for bute. You'll hear more and more discussion about it. Quite a few government ministers are saying, "it's not dangerous to humans." That's not only untrue, it's a deliberate dodge to save face.

The British are testing for it because it's harmful and they know it, the EU knows it, too.

Any carcass they find is going to be discarded. The public won't get to eat it. In the US, horse meat stopped being used for dogs decades ago.

EU has told its suppliers that come summer, 2013, every carcass sold for meat will have to show a complete drug record from the age of 6 months and the animal will have to be drug-free or they won't take it.

Cattle are raised as food animals; horses are not. The FDA classifies them differently: cattle are livestock, horses are companion animals. This isn't because horses are cute. It's because they're the athletes of the animal world and they're drugged as such: painkillers, diuretics, bronchodialators, steroids, antibiotics… snake venom.
8 iNdabaNdaba
Tags: Horse,meat


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Anonymous user 11 years
Horses are not meant for food ,no wonder why there is so much diebetics, dimentia. cancers, thats from horse meat its like eating dog or cat .i will never buy in those shops again .
Anonymous user 11 years
Zanu PF rule over the Ndebele is more harmful to every aspect of Ndebele existence than horse meat. In Lesotho, more than 80% of the population eat horse meat and they all look lively, but the Ndebele in Zim walk around like zombies because of Shona rule!
Anonymous user 11 years
Please anonymous user stop insulting us.
Anonymous user 11 years
i have tasted one before, its nutritious
Anonymous user 11 years
it is really wonderfully i once ate it
Anonymous user 11 years
No, it is not as harmful as Mashonaland United, the newlook national football team in Zimbabwe. Mashonaland United will worry you to death!
Anonymous user 11 years
This was very enlightening. Thanks so much for your research. I had heard horse meat was toxic to humans, but didn't know the details. Now I'm wondering why on earth snake venom would be given to a race horse. It's so unfortunate that "man's" greed ends in abusing these wonderful animals that just want to run free. I don't support round-ups or rodeos for various reasons. I am a supporter of H.R. 1094: Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2013. I can't support slaughtering horses for any reason. There is so much animal abuse that needs to be stopped, not only in other countries, but right here in the U.S. I support the animal rights groups that educate us and create laws to protect animals and punish abusers. I think it starts with teaching our children to respect the rights of animals and treat them with love.
Anonymous user 9 years
As a food and animal scientist, I believe horses could and should be used as food. Obviously some consumers are emotionally attached to horses, but after seeing so many neglected and mistreated horses after they are no longer useful, it is much more humane to harvest them as food animals. As taxpayers we are supporting the feeding and caring for hundreds of thousands of wild horses which are essentially confined to feedlots. This is costing us hundreds of millions of dollars. Slaughter plants handle and harvest horses (and other food animals) humanely and are subject to extensive residue testing. I know of no scientific data which would support some of the claims of toxic resides. While this could be true, there is no evidence supporting it. While I have eaten horse meat several times, I certainly understand why some don't. I strongly believe and support that some horses should be allowed to enter the food chain under proper handling and food safety monitoring.
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