Summit Considers Horses For Human Consumption
A group called United Horsemen has organized a summit in Las Vegas this week. Rep. Sue Wallis, of House District 52 from Campbell County, is a member of United Horsemen and is attending the Summit of the Horse. She is also a proponent of harvesting horses for human consumption.
Too many horses:
"The Summit of the Horse is dealing with not only the problem of excess horses on federal lands, tribal lands, state lands private land, but also the problem in the domestic horse industry."
Rep. Wallis says that the problems in the domestic horse industry are even more serious than the destruction of range land by wild horses.
"What we're talking about here, primarily the domestic horse industry needs a humane option to deal unwanted, excess, unusable horses."
The Summit of the Horse will include guest speakers like former Texas congressman Charlie Stenholm and Bureau of Land Management Director Bob Abbey.
And, Rep. Wallis said, there's something to keep in mind when you're talking about the wild horse populations in the West.
Taxpayers fund BLM:
"The BLM has the luxury of calling on the American taxpayer to pay the bill to manage their horses. That is not an option for tribes, for states and for private landowners, who are also being impacted by way too many excess horses."
China is the world's number one consumer of horse meat, said Wallis, followed closely by Mexico, then European countries like Italy, France and Belgium, and some Scandinavian countries.
She noted that Americans were also big consumers of horse meat during World War II because beef was strictly rationed.
Horses are livestock:
"Horses are livestock and we have long-standing laws and regulations that ensure the humane handling of any class of livestock being harvested for food, same applies to horses."
Rep. Wallis said the opposition is coming from animal rights activists like the Humane Society of the United States and PETA, with the goal of shutting down all animal agriculture, and they are using the horse to further their agenda.