Horse News

New Jersey Senate Passes Legislation to Ban Horse Slaughter 35 to 4

Press Release from

“I’m proud New Jersey is becoming the humane capital of the world,”
The Great Seal of the State of New Jersey.

The Great Seal of the State of New Jersey. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Humane Society of the United States applauds the New Jersey Senate for passing A.2023/S.1976, legislation that prevents the slaughter of horses for human consumption. The bill was approved by an overwhelming, bi-partisan majority vote of 35 to 4. It was introduced in the Assembly by Assemblyman Ronald Dancer, R- Cream Ridge and in the Senate by Sen. Raymond J. Lesniak, D-Union.

A.2023/S.1976 would make it illegal to slaughter horses for human consumption; ban the sale of horse meat or products derived from slaughtered horses; and ban the transport of horse meat or live horses for the purpose of slaughter.

No U.S. facilities slaughter horses for human consumption, but more than 100,000 horses in the United States are shipped every year to Canada and Mexico where they are slaughtered.

Horse slaughter harms efforts to rescue horses as rescue operators are routinely outbid by killer buyers at auctions. USDA statistics show that 92 percent of all horses sent to slaughter arrive in “good” condition—meaning they are sound, in good health and could go on to lead productive lives.

“The slaughter of horses for human consumption is a needless and cruel way to end the life of New Jersey’s state animal,” said Kathleen Schatzmann, The HSUS’ New Jersey state director. “With more than 80 percent of Americans opposed to the slaughter of horses for human consumption, New Jersey lawmakers listened to their constituents and passed A.2023. The Humane Society of the United States thanks Assemblyman Dancer for introducing A.2023 in the Assembly and once again recognizes Senator Lesniak for his humane leadership during this session.”

“I’m proud New Jersey is becoming the humane capital of the world,” said Sen. Lesniak. “Prohibiting the slaughter of horses and the sale of horseflesh for human consumption will help prevent the feared startup of horse slaughterhouses since the federal government last year lifted its ban on funding of USDA inspections.”

A U.S. House of Representatives committee voted last week to restore the funding ban which, if passed in the final Agriculture Appropriations bill, would prohibit the U.S. Department of Agriculture from spending tax dollars to facilitate the operation of horse slaughter plants. Also pending in the U.S. Congress is legislation that would prohibit horse slaughter in the United States and ban the export of American horses to slaughter in other countries. Senators Robert Menendez, D-NJ, and Frank Lautenberg, D-NJ, are cosponsors of S. 1176, the American Horse Slaughter Protection Act. Similar legislation pending in the U.S. House of Representatives, H.R. 2966, has 165 cosponsors, including the majority of the members of the New Jersey delegation.

This is the third animal protection bill that Sen. Lesniak has championed in this session. Last week the New Jersey Senate approved legislation to ban the extreme confinement of breeding pigs in two-foot-wide metal gestation crates and to require certificates of registration for captive tigers.


•    More than 100,000 American horses are exported for slaughter each year, mainly for consumption in Europe and Asia.
•    The slaughter pipeline is horribly cruel, with many of the horses suffering immensely during transport and the misguided and often repeated attempts to render them unconscious. USDA has documented the abuse and misery horses suffered at slaughterhouses in the U.S. before the last remaining plants closed in 2007.
•    Virtually all the horses used for meat spend most of their lives as work, competition or sport horses, companion animals or wild horses.
•    During their lives, horses who end up at slaughter are given a constant regimen of drugs and other substances which are either illegal for food animals, or are potentially dangerous to people who eat them.

23 replies »

  1. Why does the new law seem to focus on the horses sold/slaughtered for *human* consumption? Why not ban the sale & slaughter of horses for any use? Will the new law affect New Jersey’s horse slaughterhouse which sells to zoos not restaurants? I’m guessing not, or Bravo’s owners would be squaking and trying to prevent the bill from passing. What do you think?

    Bravo Packing in Carney’s Point New Jersey sells horse meat to the zoo and exotics market.

    They’ve been investigated by animal welfare groups and not a single report says the place is acceptable.


    • Why is this the first time I’ve heard about “other” types of horse meat consumption NOT being included in the ban? How naive I’ve been to think that banning horse slaughter would save the horses totally. There’s always some loophole. Who will take up this new fight/slant on this horrific problem? I will look at dogs and zoo cats very differently from now on.


    • I was just told, this place is selling to the public if someone calls and wants to buy. NOW that is a big no NO. selling across state lines? that is a federal violation. why is this man allowed to continue, who has what on who??
      Many zoos no longer want the horse meat, beef is acceptable. AA has been there but has not gone back. Cattle are not given bute, due to human consumption etc. yet its ok to give bute to horses, and they find that acceptable to give a horse then kill it, and feed to zoo animals? Lost all respect for Chris Christie now after reading he is not interested in closing Bravo? What a 2 faced moron..


  2. Yes Calico, I would also like an answer ?????????? We all know the IMPORTANCE of the words in any Bill, the words need to be thought about and thought about again !!!!!! Although may I say Giant Kudos to New Jersey and Ronald Dancer and Raymond J. Lesniak !!!! I commend New Jersey and these two men !!!!!!! I am Praying all States will follow their Gracious Lead………… BUT PLEASE careful with wording make no mistakes they can be costly !!!!!


  3. Just wanted to give everyone a heads up on this

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  4. Love seeing ANY step in the right direction! I have a question for all of you – part of this legislation deals with “transport” – does this mean kill buyers can’t purchaseat local auction and transport horses on NJ roads?


  5. But how is the law supposed to be enforced? Say, a kill buyer goes to an auction, buys a few horses, and is stopped while transporting them out of state. All he would have to do is say that he is going to use them at a camp or riding stable, which is not illegal. If he has the proper paperwork for transport and is using the proper trailer to transport them, he could just breeze through and head for Mexico or Canada or a feedlot in another state that ships to slaughter. The said kill buyer would have to be tracked to see where he is going. It would be almost impossible to enforce this. We really have to stop the over the boarders transport to slaughter houses if we are truly going to stop this horrible “business”!! Although, we have to start somewhere and i commend NJ for its efforts to do what is right and just for the horses!


  6. Great news and a good start in the right direction! Thanks to those who have made this possible and to New Jersey for its effort, which hopefully, will lead the way for other states to follow. Not only should compassion be shown, but respect and the dignity for these beautiful, majestic, God-given creatures.


    • There are at least 5 other states that have banned this before N.J. Kill buyers write fake documents,.. and who is mentioned in the bill that is going to ENFORCE this law? Who will stop a truck to check papers, as they pass thru N.J.? NO ONE> the state wont want to take over responsibility of a load of horses to check health certificates. They are referred to as ROAD TOADS, they wont know one part of a horse from another. Proper paper work is to show a bill of lading with destination address. They hardly ever put the slaughter house address. until there is a federal ban, not much hope of a lot of change.. 😦


  7. With regard to the horrible inhumane conditions, this just goes to show more of whatmwe knew and what is documented in the USDA’s report at You cannot tale an inherently inhumane process, move to within the United States, and turn it into something it is not.

    You cannot take a high-fear, athletic, flight or fight animal like a horse, hard wired for survival for over 55 million years and put it into the hands of these extremely, cruel handlers who are taking these horses to a brutal death and expect anything but what we have seem over and over again. I don’t care what business you are in, people are what matter and no one without some large
    piece of their humanity left out could possibly kill 40 to 50 healthy, young horses a day. No one. Anyone who could do any other kind of work or live in any other lace would get as far away from a horse slaughter plant as possible.



  8. Great news for the 80% of Americans who want horse slaughter stopped, and for horses suffering this unnecessary abuse. Thank you, NJ.

    It boggles the mind there’s any demand for US horse meat remaining in the world, with all the news available on drugs and abuse.

    There’s zero effort by US horse slaughterers to keep toxic drugs out of the food supply. The EID drug affidavit system is a joke; sign your name to a lie & get a paycheck from the killer.

    It’s astonishing that zoos might risk feeding US horse meat to their carnivores, especially the big cats with their sensitive liver and kidneys.

    Bravo Packing in NJ? Many of the horses they kill come right off the race track, drugs and all.

    Animal Angel investigators recently documented racing shoes on the pile of feet @ Bravo. Frog Juice for dinner? No thanks!

    The disdain belligerent horse butchers have for the horses, goes out to the consumers, too. Passing the Federal ban can’t come soon enough.

    Thanks, RT!


  9. You can’t pass the federal ban without the Senate If no one had to deal with the Senate the ban on the killing these horses would have already been in place for years. The last time I checked the crooked Senate had only 24 cosponsors of S.1176, the same Senators that had cosponsored it the last time.

    The Senate are the people that are given the high donations from the racing industry and the breed registries and anyone else that makes money off of killing these horses. Some of the donations run as high as $300,000 a pop and that’s not pocket change. Many of the senators get anywhere from the lowest of $25,000 on up. The House gets very small donations of $1,000 to $5,000. The lobbyists make appointments to see these Senators all the time, take them out to lunch etc. Like I said, if the Senate didn’t exist this problem wouldn’t exist.


  10. I didn’t know that horsemeat was still being used in pet food. I thought that had stopped long ago. I didn’t think there was a horse slaughtering plant still in operation in the U.S. I am confused. Kudos to Assemblyman Dancer and state Sen. Lesniak for standing up for our horses! Now, Governor Christie needs to sign this bill. This country needs to ban the slaughter of horses here and to make it illegal for them to be sent to any other country for slaughter there. There are some rabid pro-slaughter folks out there. A terrible example is one Sue Wallis from Wyoming. She won’t be happy until there isn’t a horse left standing. Her lies are incredible and she isn’t right, period. The AQHA is another pro-slaughter group, along with certain vet groups. Hard to believe that people who go to school to HELP animals would promote the hideous, cruel slaughter of horses.


    • Dear Suzanne, I also wonder why anyone would go to school to be a Vet and to help Animals, and then turn around and be pro horse slaughter, I think not only do they disgrace themselves with this atrocity , but they disgrace the Whole Profession!!!!! And the Vets who are passionate to save and preserve all animals……………..


  11. Makes me want to live there…a step in the right direction. I am sometimes so ashamed of our Canadian Conservative Government run by Dictator Harper who support horse slaughter in Canada.My local MPP & MP think horse slaughter is humane & continue to say that the meat is non-toxic even in the face of proof to the contrary!


  12. Thank you New Jersey!! 🙂 Now, can you please get all the rest of our sates to follow your lead? You are a true leader, I wish we lived in your state. I wish this whole issue of horse-slaughter did not even exist! Please talk other political leaders from every state into doing the same as your state.


  13. Horses slaughtered for food consumption…so wrong! I know there’s not a whole lot we can do to stop slaughtering in other countries, but we have a CHOICE in aiding that do such a horrible and despicable thing.


  14. Calico. here is the actual 2008 investigation into Bravo Packing. It was a 6 month shocking undercover look into the plant and the sick family behind it done by Elle Nash and Amanda Sorvino. 10 slaughter horses were rescued from Bravo and trailered to safety at the wrap of the investigation. It was supposed to result in a grand jury case against Bravo and plant manager, Monty Merola, but his sudden death thwarted Nash and Sorvino’s efforts and the DA dropped the case.


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