Right now, every donation is matched until 31st December or until we reach our goal of £155,000. Don't miss out! DONATE NOW
Get the latest news and updates from Animal Equality

Animal Equality Calls For The End Of The Slaughter Of Horses For Human Consumption

Animal Equality has published images from inside horse slaughterhouses, exposing the cruel horse meat trade and raising awareness of the suffering these intelligent animals face.
06/12/2022 Updated: 16/04/2024
A horse with rope around his neck in a horse slaughterhouse A horse in a slaughterhouse

Horse Slaughter in the UK: Is It Legal?

Animal Equality has launched an international campaign to end the slaughter of horses for human consumption. 

In the UK, very little horse meat is consumed, with many Brits revolted by the idea of consuming horse meat – as evidenced by the ‘horse meat scandal’ in 2013 where horse DNA was discovered in burgers labelled as ‘beef’. 

Despite this, horses and ponies of all ages continue to be slaughtered every year in the UK, with the majority of horse meat sold to other European countries. A 2022 survey from the Food Standards Agency found that 99% of horse meat in England and Wales is exported abroad.

This cruel trade makes the UK the 8th largest exporter of horse meat in Europe, with an export value of over £6 million in 2020. 

The vast majority of horses who end up in slaughterhouses in the UK have been bred and abandoned. These breeders are often not licensed and may sell their horses to slaughterhouses when they cannot or don’t want to take care of them anymore. 

The slaughter of racehorses for human consumption and animal feed in the UK was banned in 2022 – in a historic win for the protection of these intelligent animals – but despite this, the sale and consumption of horse meat is still legal in the UK. 

Animal Equality’s Work on Horse Slaughter

There is very little public awareness of the fact that the UK has been profiting from the suffering of animals that we don’t dare eat in our country.

Animal Equality will improve public awareness of the reality of this cruel trade and the need to strengthen legal protections of these intelligent, social animals through the new campaign. 

Animal Equality has investigated the slaughter of horses in Spain, Italy and Mexico – finding that the animals were often killed while conscious, causing them unnecessary and unjustifiable suffering.

What You Can Do To Help Horses

Like the dogs and cats that many of us live with, horses are thinking, feeling animals who deserve protection. 

In 2020, Greece banned the slaughter of horses, prohibiting the breeding, use and export of horses for the production of fur, leather, meat or other substances. The UK must now do the same. 

The British public clearly considers it too cruel to kill horses for human consumption, so why do we continue to profit from this cruelty through international sales of horse meat? This hypocrisy must end.

Animal Equality has launched a petition urging the UK Government to protect these animals and put an end to their mistreatment.

Demand the Government bans horse slaughter – SIGN NOW!

By signing, you accept our privacy policy.

You can unsubscribe or amend your preferences at any time.

Latest News

The current ‘bird flu’ outbreak has spread to cows on dairy farms across the US. Here’s how factory farm conditions could play a role.

Last week, Animal Equality presented two bills to protect animals in the Brazilian Parliament, alongside government official Luciene Cavalcante. The first bill aims to prohibit the killing of male chicks in Brazil. Every year, millions of male chicks are killed globally because they cannot lay eggs and are not the…

Mexico’s Chamber of Deputies unanimously approved the nation’s first Adequate and Sustainable Food Law, supporting the country’s transition toward plant-based foods. With 420 votes in favour, 0 abstentions, and 0 votes against the Bill, Mexico’s first nationwide Adequate and Sustainable Food Law will now pass to the Federal Executive,…