Horse: it’s what’s for dinner?

7 05 2007

British celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay has said that consumers should consider eating horse meat, as a safe and nutritious alternative to beef and other meats. Link What never seems to occur to him or anyone else, ethical and moral questions aside, is that horses are not raised and fed to be part of the food chain in the west, meaning that there is no way of knowing what sort of drugs, pathologies, chemicals etc. are actually present in the meat at the time of slaughter: wormers, Bute, antibiotics, you name it. (Hat tip to raincoaster for the story, btw)

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15 responses

7 05 2007
Trix

Nothing wrong with eating horsemeat… I have eaten it all my life as part of a normal diet. I prefer it too beef to be honest.
I don’t agree with the way you are saying ” horses aren’t raised for consumption” I rather eat a horse that has been raised as a pleasure animal as a pet… then purposely bred for consumption. I rather know that the animal had a good life.
Just like my chickens in my backyard…. Or the lambs brought up in the field behind me… Or the pigs in the woods 4 miles away. The passport scheme should have all the medication/vacination the animal has had. And because of that you know what it has been given.

7 05 2007
defrostindoors

I was thinking of the horses which typically wind up in slaughters, at least in North America: elderly animals, those with injuries or disease, “surplus” foals, stolen horses, etc. In those cases there are no controls over what the animal may have ingested or been given, or what its state of health is prior to slaughter. Of course, if you’re raising them yourself and know their history, that’s quite a different situation. The vast majority of horses delivered to the slaughter pens in North America are presented “as is”.

7 05 2007
MiKael

oh, ouch, I don’t even want to think aboutr any of my babies ending up on someone’s dinner table

7 05 2007
stumps

Gordon Ramsey is despicable. Horses are not livestock and are not raised for human consumption. They are given medication their entire lives that are clearly marked not for food animals. They have never been a food animal.

Those that lump horses in with livestock, please tell all of us what cow you bet on in the Derby on Saturday? Are your mounted police riding pigs? What was Paul Revere riding on his famous ride? Almost every statue of a soldier is atop a horse. In the old west, the cowboys did not eat their horses and horse thieves were hung.

It’s time Americans say buh-bye to the foreign owned kill houses that pay no taxes and send their profits overseas. If they want to eat horses in Japan, Belgium and France, let them eat their horses, not ours.

7 05 2007
horsetalkwithjen

why does everyone fail to see the biggest issue here? why with all the political grandstanding and debate over food vs pet, does anyone one not mention the root of this problem? in all the finger pointing and name calling, no one puts the responsiblity of this problem where it belongs, in the hands of the american horse owning pubic. the very sad fact is, american’s breed too many horses. we are irresponsible and have negated our duty to these animals. 90,000 of them per year. i dont know of another country that has so many “surpluse” horses. where is the money in any of these bills that fund education? where are the universites that teach ethics in breeding? where are the programs that offer alternitives to auction? who are the research companies developing much needed sterility options? the horse industry is yet again thirty years behind the times. where are the celebrities campaining for spay and gelding? this is such an easy problem to fix, if only people would admit to the real problem.

7 05 2007
horsetalkwithjen

and by the way, stumps….horse meat has been apart of the american diet on and off since the founding of this country. it could be found in butchers commonly up until the last 20 years. some specialty butchers still offer it. if your anti slaughter…great. just get your facts straight.

8 05 2007
defrostindoors

why does everyone fail to see the biggest issue here? why with all the political grandstanding and debate over food vs pet, does anyone one not mention the root of this problem? in all the finger pointing and name calling, no one puts the responsiblity of this problem where it belongs, in the hands of the american horse owning pubic. the very sad fact is, american’s breed too many horses. we are irresponsible and have negated our duty to these animals. 90,000 of them per year. i dont know of another country that has so many “surpluse” horses.

Good points, and I’ve mentioned them on Bridlepath many times, actually.

8 05 2007
Trix

Gordon Ramsay is talking about consumption in Britain i thought??
So why do you all bring in the American slaughter houses debate??

8 05 2007
Transylvanianhorseman

In 35 years living in Britain (until 1999), I’ve never heard of horsemeat being offered for human consumption. Last time it was promoted was, I think, back in Victorian times. I suspect that Ramsay is just trying to get some media column inches! Horsemeat is recorded as having been eaten in the British Isles (and indeed horses were sacrified as part of pre-Christian religious practices) until about a millennium ago, when the Church banned eating horsemeat as pagan. The foxhunts used to be a good buyer of retired horses, to feed the hounds. Now, I guess that most retired British horses end up in pet food.

8 05 2007
Callie

I agree with “defrostindoors”. I’ve written a few posts on this topic before, saying exactly the same thing.

9 05 2007
raincoaster

Ramsay is indeed just trying to get press. He hates people as a whole and no doubt is just trying to see what he can do to outrage them. But defrost is correct in that the horses raised in North America are not raised for consumption and could very well be unfit for the purpose because of the chemicals in their system.

Fox hunts still buy horses to feed the hounds. They just do drag hunts.

Horsemeat for consumption is primarily a Continental thing: Belgium and Holland are particularly big on it, but they eat horses raised for the purpose. Icelandic horses originated as a meat breed. But so did Chihuahuas, come to think of it.

9 05 2007
defrostindoors

Finally, a justification for the existence of chihuahuas! ;)

15 05 2007
Manure dumped at Ramsay's restaurant « Bridlepath

[...] dumped at Ramsay’s restaurant 15 05 2007 Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay’s Claridge’s restaurant has had a tonne of horse manure dumped on its [...]

13 04 2008
lovehorses

I am totally aganist horse slaughter or consumption anywhere. For people like me, horses are a cross between livestock and pet. If you are lucky enough to work with horses you know that they can understand you and they know when you are having a bad day. Cows don’t do that the last time I checked. I USED to like Gordon Ramsay but now I hate him for saying Britain should eat horse meat.

17 11 2008
Redmypony

Can’t anyone see that horses are bred for riding and driving and thats all, its totally wrong to eat them, we eat practically every other animal, which i think is also wrong, being a vegiterian. I have nothing against gordon ramsey, but i think his whole idea on horse meat is weird.

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