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Albuquerque BioPark seeks bids for tens of thousands of pounds of horse meat

Zoo animals
Zoo animals
Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images

Countless residents of New Mexico have opposed the opening of a horse slaughterhouse in their state, and feel relief that the battle is finally over. Then on Sept. 3, evidence surfaced that horse meat, totaling well over 38,000 pounds, is slated to come into New Mexico.

Station KOB, the source for this article, has provided details that Albuquerque BioPark will purchase tens of thousands of pounds of horse meat, and the zoo has done so for 30 years or more, with taxpayer money. The zoo has spent around $65,000 annually for horse meat for the last few years. The question can be raised as to how dangerous this horse meat may be for the animals.

The request for all this horse meat has struck another chord within the animal welfare groups.

The Wild Horse Observers Association has stated, again, that the horse is iconic in America and must not be inhumanely treated. Then, too, horses are administered chemicals such as Bute and others that must never be included in a human diet and should not be given to animals either.

Apparently, horse meat is the zoo’s primary meat choice. The director of BioPark, Rick Janser, claims that horse meat is greatly preferred by the zoo carnivores. He says that the zoo switched over to beef when inspectors no longer were funded for horse meat checks. The staff found that the animals did not like beef, and the cheetahs refused to eat it.

Based on KOB’s report, Janser said,

The animals just prefer the horse meat, so that's what we went with.

Janser also said that since that time, Albuquerque BioPark buys meat from Canada, from a company called Milliken Meat Products.

He said,

The meat is safe and the zoo adds supplements to the animals' diets.

The bottom line is, we're here for the animals. That's what our main concern is. Politics aside, we've got to do what's right by the animals, and this was the best course of action.

According to the staff at Albuquerque BioPark, horse meat is used at many other zoos.