Items

Forums
Eating Horse Meat May Help Preserve Breeds
 By Winniefield Park   •   2nd Jul 2017   •   1,076 views   •   0 comments
Eating horsemeat is a controversial subject that many people find offensive. But, there is a small indication that the stigma is slowly lessening. In part, itís a recognition that we need to be conscious of how we use our resources. And, some feel that raising horses for meat may preserve breeds that would otherwise disappear.



In Iceland, only 1% of the total landmass can be used for agriculture of any kind. This means that grazing land is precious. As a result, the population of horses in terms of quantity and quality is strictly controlled. Part of the control method is to keep some of the animals for meat. Those used for work and pleasure are kept separate, while those destined for meat are left to live an almost wild existence in deserted and remote areas.

Itís estimated that about 10,000 horses a year of Icelandís horse population of 40,000 are processed for meat. While there are those that find eating horse meat objectionable, itís not an unusual sight to see it offered on restaurant menus with cuts from foal meat being a specialty. A portion of the meat is also exported to other European countries. It seems to have been an effective strategy, along with banning other horses from coming to the country, to prevent overgrazing and keeping the overall population healthy.

In France, native draft horse breeds like Breton, Ardennais and Boulonnais are some that are bred specifically to raise animals for meat. According to the French Trait website, over 85% of the draft horses bred in that country are bred for meat production. The meat from these particular breeds is not necessarily eaten within France however. The meat from young horses is exported to Italy, where it is popular. The horse meat eaten in France is said to be from older horses, processed from North American sources. This is a matter of taste, rather than necessity. But, itís believed that without the horsemeat trade, these national draft horse breeds would become extinct. Some believe that farmland too, is preserved by the pasturing of these animals, that would otherwise return to unproductive forests.

The trend of eating horsemeat in France has been in a steady decline since World War I, but recently there has been a slight increase in the number of people who eat horsemeat. The reasons for this might be that horsemeat is a leaner, cleaner alternative to pork, beef, and chicken and more people are coming to see the rationale for consuming it - that itís no different to eat a horse than it is to eat any other animal. Itís more easily found on restaurant menus, although it isnít as trendy for home cooks yet.

The horse-loving Brits are not coming to the idea of eating horse meat as easily. Back in 2014, I wrote about the proposal by the The Dartmoor Hill Pony Association to encourage the use of this rare breed for meat. Dartmoor Hill Ponies and registered Dartmoor Ponies are endangered breeds. The proposal would only affect the semi-feral ponies that are raised on common pastures. Ideally, allowing some ponies to be processed for meat would raise the value and therefore the quality of care these ponies are getting while preventing their extinction. The maintenance of the herds would also preserve the lands they live on.

The Dartmoor Hill Pony Association has announced its intentions to start selling the ponies for meat. But, there are many arguments against the move. The hill ponies arenít rare, say some. Horses raised for meat will not ensure they are of increased quality. Others have long held beliefs against eating horse meat. Still, others say itís only responsible to maintain healthy herds and that a healthy short life is better than a long one of suffering.

So is this a viable way of preserving at-risk breeds? Could other breeds such as the Canadian, the foundation type Morgans, and other Ďdraft-typeí horse and pony breeds be saved this way?

--
ref 1: Charity to save Dartmoor ponies by eating them
ref 2: Is it right to eat horse meat
Horse News More PB Articles About:  Horsemeat,
Horse News More In This Category:  General      Horse News More From This Author:  Winniefield Park
 Related Horse News
Countries Where Foals Are Bred For Horsemeat
12th Dec 2014   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
We may dislike it, but there are still many people who eat horse meat. A few years ago, I interviewed a woman from Malta who was living in Britain. When I asked her what she missed, she said the beauty of the island and her mother ...
Would You Ever Eat Horse Meat
6th Jul 2014   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
In some cultures, horse meat is still a valued source of protein. A few years ago, I interviewed a young woman from Malta, who was then working in London, England. What did she miss most about home? She missed a delicious meal of ...
Could You Eat Your Horse
11th Feb 2016   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
There are places of course where horses are eaten, and even raised specifically for their meat. Many of us have strong objections to eating horse meat. But a Swedish harness racer driver has faced criticism for her decision to eat ...
Eating Horse Meat May Help Preserve Breeds
2nd Jul 2017   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Eating horse meat is a controversial subject that many people find offensive. But, there is a small indication that the stigma is slowly lessening. In part, itís a recognition that we need to be conscious of how we use our resourc ...
You Might Have Eaten a Horse
10th Nov 2018   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
A study by researchers from Guelph University shows that there could be horsemeat in some Canadian sausage. Of the 100 sausages tested undeclared horse meat showed up in one sample that was supposed to be 100% pork. ...
  View More PonyBox Related Horse Articles
 More News by Winniefield Park
Gaza Riders Back in the Saddle After COVID Lockdown
11th Jul 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
The COVID19 lockdown meant many of us werenít able to ride, or were not able to ride as we normally would. Like many organizations around the world, the Palestine Equestrian Federation placed restrictions on the types of activitie ...
Kentucky Derby Horse Drugging Probe Ongoing
10th Jul 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Bob Baffert, trainer of five Kentucky Derby winning horses is going for a sixth win. But, his efforts are shadowed by reports of horses in his care are again testing positive for performance enhancing drugs. Details are sparse as ...
RavenSide Stud TBS Home of Multiple Top Ranked Horses
5th Jul 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
RSS Break Even and RSS Identity Thief are both top ranked horses belonging to the same stables. RavenSide Stud TBS was established in 2017 and is ranked at 113 with 49,459,023 PB in earnings. Currently, there are three stallions s ...
Horse Dismounts Police in Protest Turned Ugly
4th Jul 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
During a peaceful protest that turned ugly in London, UK a police horse bolted after being pelted with debris by violent demonstrators. Flares, bottles and sticks flew as the crowd was pushed back by mounted police officers. One o ...
Horse That Survived Kentucky Horse Shooting Foals Healthy Pinto
3rd Jul 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
You might remember a story from early last winter about twenty horses in Eastern Kentucky that were shot and killed. The few survivors were taken to Kentucky Humane Societyís Willow Hope Farm to regain their health and eventually ...
Stop Petting Wild Horses
29th Jun 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Beach-goers to the Outer Banks are being asked to stay clear of the wild horses that live there after a photo of a woman appearing to pat a wild horse has surfaced. This is not an isolated incident as tourists visit the well known ...
Funny Horse Fruit Taste Test
28th Jun 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Some horses eat anything and will eat everything from anchovies to zucchini. And some are extremely picky and act like youíve poisoned them if you put anything but hay and grain in front of their noses. Have you ever tried a taste ...
Jim Gaffigan Horse Comedy
27th Jun 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Jim Gaffigan pokes fun at the Triple Crown, from the costumes and pageantry, to owners, jockeys and trainers. He then takes a humorous trek through the horse world, exploring horse breeds, horse people, horseshoes, riding and the ...
  View All News by Winniefield Park
 
©2002 - 2020   PonyBox LLC Create Account Advertise Terms Privacy Contact Us
171 Members Online 267,502 Registered Members 2,737 News Articles 11,630,349 Unique News Article Views 276,713,478 Website Views