President Signs Horse Slaughter Amendment

On Thursday, Nov. 10, President Bush signed the 2006 Agricultural Appropriations bill containing an amendment prohibiting the use of federal funds to inspect horse meat. The amendment includes a 120-day phase-in period that allows slaughter

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On Thursday, Nov. 10, President Bush signed the 2006 Agricultural Appropriations bill containing an amendment prohibiting the use of federal funds to inspect horse meat. The amendment includes a 120-day phase-in period that allows slaughter plants in Texas and Illinois to process horse meat for human consumption until mid-March of 2006. The bill will remain in effect until October 2006, which is the end of the fiscal year.


The USDA requires horse meat processed for human consumption to be inspected by USDA inspectors, according to Steven Cohen, USDA spokesperson. However, horse processing plants are still able to process horse meat for animals housed in zoos or privately.


Officials at the USDA are reviewing the amendment’s language and current legislation to determine if a loop-hole exists for horse meat processing plants to pay for USDA inspectors out of their own pockets.


“The 120 days are already counting down,” Cohen said. “We’re not exactly sure what the slaughter houses will be able to do (under this amendment). It will likely take several weeks to sort it all out

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Written by:

Chad Mendell is the former Managing Editor for TheHorse.com .

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