U.S. Boosts Horse-Meat Testing on Imports

Source: By BILL TOMSON from the Wall Street Journal Online

The extra tests are to make “absolutely certain” the U.S. is unaffected by the overseas recalls on horse meat…

Testing Horse MeatWASHINGTON—Europe’s horse-meat scandal is prompting the U.S. to increase the “species” testing it does on imports to detect any traces of equine contamination in products labeled as beef, pork or other meat.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Monday ordered inspectors to increase testing on all meat imports from Ireland, Poland, the U.K., countries where meat production has been implicated in the scandal.

The inspectors were also told to begin performing species tests on some beef-product imports, regardless of what country it comes from. The extra tests are to make “absolutely certain” the U.S. is unaffected by the overseas recalls on horse meat, a USDA official said Monday. The official declined to discuss the levels of testing.

USDA officials have previously said Americans are in no danger of eating horse disguised in meat products because the U.S. doesn’t import beef from countries involved in the European scandal. The U.S. imports no beef from the U.K., Ireland, Poland or Iceland, but those countries do ship pork and other meats here.

Ireland’s agriculture ministry confirmed in March that government officials had detected horse meat in beef products there. Horse meat can be sold for consumption in the European Union, but it must be labeled in food products.

The European Commission said in March it has begun a broad testing program for undeclared horse in European meat. Horse meat can be sold for consumption in the European Union, but it must be labeled in food products.

Meanwhile, Oklahoma last month passed a law permitting horses to be slaughtered in the state to produce meat for human consumption, the latest salvo in a national debate over how to deal with wild and abandoned horses.

The U.S. Congress is considering a measure that would ban horse slaughter nationally.

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27 comments on “U.S. Boosts Horse-Meat Testing on Imports

  1. Well somebody in Washington is listening. Increasing inspections of any sort means using funds that are quite limited. It appears the USDA is making a statement about horse meat. Simply put…NOT IN OUR HOUSE!

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    • What about the adulteration of horse meat into the pink slime out of Greece that is made into chicken nuggets? Testing may be a start, but it will not catch everything from everywhere that slaughter is allowed and profiteers want to make a buck.

      Could it be that the beef industry in this country is feeling some blow back for supporting horse slaughter and people are skeptical about buying their “product?” Are these tests being performed to placate their customers?

      The only way to ensure that you and your family are safe from this travesty is to boycott meat. There are a myriad of tvp (texturized vegetable protein) products from burgers to sausages to “ribs” in most supepermarkets throughout the nation that have the taste without all the unhealthy grease. You do not have to be vegan or vegetarian to try these foods (go easy, they are still processed).

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  2. They are trying again to cover their dirty work tracks again! If they had left Mother Nature alone in the first place they wouldn’t have to be spending our tax dollars again because of their ignorant greed! They have misused God’s Blessing!

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  3. Good to know that the USDA is right on top of things as usual. Its only been a few months now since the European scandal hit the airwaves and the USDA is now moving promptly to contain any potential threat to US consumers by ordering immediate testing! Whew….that’s a relief.

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  4. Well, I’m just a stupid American consumer, but USDA wasn’t checking already????? EU horsemeat scandal gets them motivated? But they authenticate and ship US equines destined for meat to all corners of the earth are they are NOT motivated? Anyone see a paradox here?

    Geesh….this is just pathetic.

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  5. And this gem,

    “USDA officials have previously said Americans are in no danger of eating horse disguised in meat products because the U.S. doesn’t import beef from countries involved in the European scandal. The U.S. imports no beef from the U.K., Ireland, Poland or Iceland, but those countries do ship pork and other meats here.”

    BUT countries involved in HCHS in North and South America ship all kinds of “meat”, including “beef” to countries involved in the horsemeat scandal, who in turn, are allowed to ship products here. I won’t bother to comment on the idiocy of a pack of ground beef with a label of US/CAN/MEX.

    What a flat out lie that it can’t happen here. Somebody is illegally whacking equines in Florida for meat…right? And just because USDA says it can’t happen doesn’t mean that it is not happening because it is.

    What a stoooooopid statement from USDA!

    Anyone ever read a COOL on a product in the store?…if you can find it?

    What a joke.

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    • Yes.. I call it the ” multiple choice label” I’ve seen it on meat, nuts,candy..may or does contain product of this, that or the other country..or combination of all..about as useful in really determining origin as just saying ” earth”..

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      • My favorite is “distributed by”! Can’t find poop on where components are from, practices or inspection. WalMart and generic branding are kings of this lie.

        What a hoot! No disclosure of sourcing, inspection, etc.

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  6. “Absolutely certain”….the only way for that to happen is to globally ban horse slaughter.

    Sounds like they’re running scared as they know that 99.9% of Americans would be horrified and it would end up being way more than just a freak’n scandal

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    • If you go to the company’s website (www.certifiedsteaks.com) it shows it was actually a PR stunt IN FAVOR of the SAFE Act!

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      • I was wondering if it was a JOKE….but a sick one…
        Thanks Mechelle……….I didn’t that part of it and so glad….

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  7. Even prior to this, the USDA has been abysmally lax in its inspections. In the article above, notice the words “increase” (what, from testing 1 item to testing 2 items?) and “some” (it is ONLY testing SOME beef import items, but not ALL of them).

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  8. Most on this blog don’t appear to support the inspector’s agenda – and rightly so since the USDA is being coerced into inspecting horse slaughter with our tax dollars against the public’s will. Now they will test “some” of the imported meat to satisfy U.S. consumer fears.

    My question is: Why does anyone trust the meat industry? They have demonstrated over and over that they do not care about their customer’s health and “Humane Slaughter” is a lie. They need to convince people that they are clean and reputable because people simply do not need to eat meat – horses, pigs, cows, or dogs – and with their “profit above all else” motive, they are not credible. The USDA is simply their puppets.

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  9. Hmmm…how about all the recalls on so called beef products????? I would not trust the USDA as far as
    I could throw them…Weren’t they suppose to be checking the meat that was recalled? It seems the only time they do a recall is when people become ill. I also thought that we import beef from South America. So to the USDA, which is? And why the recalls? Sounds like they shot themselves in the foot with the horse slaughter issue. I guess this problem for Europe couldn’t have come at at better time. I write each day to my Legisllators asking them where the SAFE bill is..If I was a sitting Rep or Senator I would certainly make sure to push this bill because people have just about had it with Washington and the politicians…Glad I quit eatting meat…Now we should reduce the number of inspectors inspecting products that people do eat so that we can serve our US horses to the ugly
    and inhumane people in Europe and around the World…Quite frankly haven’t we had enough????

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    • The recent recalls on beef “products” were in Europe, so our USDA would not have jurisdiction to do their inspections.They are just spot checking imports from Europe.

      Keep pushing for the SAFE Act. Our congress says there are so many bills, and unless they are on the comittee(s) where the various bills are discussed, they have little input – except to be a co-sponsor, of course.

      There are 44 co-sponsors for the SAFE bill in the house of reps. The senate has its own version of the bill with bi-partisan support. Either side could move it out of committee and onto the floor for a roll call vote. The house passed The American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act in 2007, but the Senate didn’t vote on their part, so it lapsed. Had that happened, this would not be an issue here.

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  10. “the latest salvo in a national debate over how to deal with wild and abandoned horses.”

    IMHO the way to deal with wild horses is to re-enact the R.O.A.M. which provided millions of federal lands to the wild horses not the cattle industry, pass the SAFE Act which would stop horse slaughter in the US, and return the wild horses to their lands which have been stolen from them.

    Looks to me like McNeil and her like intend to slaughter them.

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  11. All their damned testing means nothing. Imports…bah! Better look hard at domestic. Pad the SAFE ACT and don’t be fooled by the bs.. The only way to save these horses is to ban horse slaughter!

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  12. Anybody know what happened with the “UN IDENTIFIED” meat that was not dog,pig,cow,chicken or horse ???? OH nor human ????

    Like

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