Horse-Slaughtering & Horse-”Meat”: Background


English: Mission: Wolf: Cutting horse meat for...

English: Mission: Wolf: Cutting horse meat for the wolves before big feed. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Horse meat scandal – look for food with a better story

Last month, authorities in Ireland analysed supermarket beef burgers and found that they contained meat from horses and pigs. Now we are finding out that some Findus ‘beef’ lasagne have been made entirely from horse meat.

Horse meat or pig meat found in ‘beef’ products highlights the weaknesses of a globalised system of meat production and distribution in which supermarkets comb the EU market (which absurdly includes imports from Chile) for the cheapest meat produced in factory farms and distributed via dubious wholesalers.

Although supermarkets have promised better quality control, consumers will continue to be misled until meat is labelled with the country of origin and whether it was produced in an intensive factory farm.

Consumers in the UK who want pork which avoids this centralised system in supermarkets must look for labels saying outdoor bred and reared, free range or organic. Pork with these labels has been raised on high welfare farms, almost certainly in the UK, which means the animals have not been given routine doses of antibiotics which are needed to keep them alive in stressful, overcrowded factory farms and will not have been mixed with any other product.

Consumers can also find high welfare pork at farmers’ markets or small butchers who can vouch for the origin of the meat. Buying in this fully transparent way ensures that the pig has not been tortured before you eat it, that you are paying a fair price and that your money stays in the locality, thus helping to preserve our farming skills and vibrant rural communities.

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