DNR Could Determine Fate Of Horse Slaughter Plant

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons
Photo courtesy of Creative Commons

By deciding whether horses are livestock, the Missouri Department of Natural Resources will help determine the fate of a proposed horse slaughter plant later this month.

State officials are reviewing a permit application that would allow the facility to begin processing equines in Gallatin, in northwestern Missouri. Officials at Rains Natural Meats say they are worried that political pressure will influence the process. A DNR spokeswoman said the agency has strictly adhered to state procedures.

But Rains representatives say DNR officials have already misinterpreted Missouri regulations in dealing with the horse slaughter issue. In November, the natural resources agency granted Rains a general operating permit to begin slaughtering livestock, except for horses.

“Horses have always been considered livestock under Missouri law and code,” said Blair Dunn, a New Mexico-based attorney representing Rains. But now, DNR officials have “got it into their heads” to treat horses differently, he said.

Read more from the Springfield News-Leader

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