Why Is Horse Meat Illegal?

According to the Animal Welfare Institute, horse meat is illegal because it is toxic.

If we go deeper and browse through history, we come to know that it is illegal in almost all religions.

Not only the jews and the Christians, but Islam has also introduced strict rules regarding the use of it as well.

Horse meat is illegal and there are many reasons for it. Some people dislike it for religious reasons, or just hate it because they are not accustomed to eating horse meat. It is considered taboo in America while it is illegal in many other parts of the world.

Facts to know

Well, for some time, just stop thinking in terms of religion and historical background. Is there something else that makes this type of food illegal? Here are some of the major reasons for it.

  • The horses that are used for slaughtering and eating purposes often grow up as pets or sports creatures because the wild horses are not only difficult to catch but are kept aside for a variety of other helpful tasks. So many people who have horses as pets never want to kill or sell them. They want to keep the horses as pets.
  • More than fifty drugs that are strictly prohibited and can turn out to be harmful to the horses are added to their diet so often to increase their meat. As a result, the bodies of these horses get contaminated, and when they are slaughtered, these harmful drugs can enter the humans. Remember that they are often fatal. The exposure of horses to the prohibited drugs also make them an illegal animal to eat.
  • Not even a single industry exists in the world that raises horses solely for eating purposes. It is due to this reason, the horses are treated with a lot of different kinds of drugs and other injectables to enhance their activity.

What’s more?

The New York Times has also reported that most of the drugs that are given to the racehorses contain chemicals that can cause various cancers in human beings.

In short,

The FDCA presumes that any animals or foods with prohibited substances are “adulterated” and cannot be sold for human consumption, and horse meat is filled with these substances.

More about its illegality

There are almost eight countries in the world where horse meat consumption is common in some of their areas. These countries are located in Asia and Europe, however, the Muslim community of Asia does not have even the least interest in this.

However, the countries where the horses are regularly slaughtered and sold for eating purposes consume more than 4 million horses a year. A study has revealed that this type of meat is considered as the source of protein in these countries.

Are horses slaughtered despite being illegal?

Well, there is no large-scale killing of the horses for meat production purposes. However, individual slaughters for meat consumption have been observed in various parts of the world. Remember that this practice has never gained popularity and public acceptance.

In 2018, the ten largest producers of horse meat were:

Country Number of Animals Production


1.  China 1,589,164 200,452
2.  Kazakhstan 718,027 126,520
3.  Mexico 634,845 83,922
4.  Mongolia 397,271 57,193
5.  Russia 250,248 45,388
6.  United States 114,841 29,275
7.  Canada 127,656 27,395
8.  Brazil 188,531 24,566
9.  Australia 86,244 24,148
10.  Kyrgyzstan 155,177 23,762
Total 4,262,004 642,621

Now you can see which of the countries are still opting for the horse meat in spite of its illegality.

Last Updated on May 4, 2021 by