The ASPCA has launched a social media campaign in a bid to end the long-haul shipping of 130,000 US horses each year to slaughter plants in Mexico and Canada.
The long-standing animal advocacy group’s campaign, #NotWhatIOrdered, wants supporters to sign a petition seeking a permanent ban on the slaughter of American horses for human consumption and the transport of American horses over borders for that purpose.
The nonprofit group hopes the campaign will go viral to help create awareness about the issue.
It is backing the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act – a piece of legislation that would ban the slaughter of American horses and outlaw the transport of horses to Canada and Mexico for that purpose.
The charity describes horse slaughter as America’s dirty little secret, saying the process isn’t humane and arguing the meat isn’t healthy because of the drugs given to many US horse during their lives.
“With this campaign, we’re hoping to educate the public on the issue that American horse meat is unsafe for eating – throughout their lives, horses are given medications and substances that, because of their known toxicity to humans, are expressly forbidden for use in animals intended for human consumption,” the ASPCA’s social media coordinator, Carly O’Malley, said.
“Additionally, horse slaughter is far from humane, as these animals suffer through horrible conditions.
“They are commonly shipped for more than 24 hours at a time in crowded trucks without food, water or rest and the methods used to kill them rarely result in quick, painless deaths …”