3/12/2013--Introduced. Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2013 - Amends the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to prohibit the sale or transport of equines (horses and other... Read More


This bill was introduced on Mar 12, 2013, in a previous session of Congress, but was not passed.


Date Introduced
Mar 12, 2013


Bill Text


To prohibit the sale or transport of equines and equine parts in interstate or foreign commerce for human consumption.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,


This Act may be cited as the ``Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2013''.


Congress finds that-- (1) horses and other equines are domestic animals that are used primarily for recreation, pleasure, and sport; (2) unlike cows, pigs, and other domesticated species, horses and other members of the equidae family are not raised for the purpose of human consumption; (3) equines raised in the United States are frequently treated with drugs, including phenylbutazone, acepromazine, boldenone undecylenate, omeprazole, ketoprofen, xylazine, hyaluronic acid, nitrofurazone, polysulfated glycosaminoglycan, clenbuterol, tolazoline, and ponazuril, which are not approved for use in horses intended for human consumption; (4) consuming parts of an equine raised in the United States likely poses a serious threat to human health and the public should be protected from these unsafe products; and (5) the sale and transport of equines for the purpose of processing for human consumption, and the sale and transport of equine parts for human consumption, are economic in nature and substantially affect interstate and foreign commerce.


Section 301 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 331) is amended by adding at the end the following: ``(ccc)(1) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the sale or transport of equines...

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Sentiment Map



2871 Supporting
731 Opposing
80% 20%

State: CA

316 Supporting
39 Opposing
89% 11%

District: 1st

19 Supporting
2 Opposing
90% 10%

Popularity Trend

Organizations Supporting

Claim or register your organization to support this bill.

Lake Research Partners have polled random people from various demographics since 2006 which have consistently shown that at least 80% of Americans are opposed to equine slaughter. Horses in the US have been declared companion animals by the FDA in 1970, which means they are treated differently than livestock animals. They receive medications that are unsafe, even toxic to humans. It is grossly irresponsible to provide adulterated meat for consumption by any species. There is a tremendous cost to the American taxpayer, approximately $400k per plant, per year, for a meat product that will not enter the American food supply, but is meant for export. We do not eat horses in the US, and we should not contaminate the food supply of other countries. Because horses are Fight or Flight animals, equine slaughter is inhumane. It can never be humane.

Support the SAFE Act

Veterinarians for Equine Welfare (VEW) is a group of veterinarians committed to equine welfare, and as such we support measures to end horse slaughter including passage of the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act (H.R> 1094). We are concerned about misinformation being transmitted to Congress and the broader public regarding horse slaughter. VEW believes that certain veterinary professional associations that are actively promoting horse slaughter are undermining our profession’s integrity and the welfare of the horses we care for. In so doing these organizations, of which many of us are members, erroneously purport to speak for our entire profession. Veterinarians should put animal welfare at the top of their list of priorities, not relegate it to an also-ran concern.

protection for horses and for human consumption given the nature of what horses are fed in U.S.

Equine Endeavors
2 years ago

The S.A.F.E Act is an essential piece of legislation to ensure our food supply and food exports to foreign countries remain safe. US equines are not raised or regulated as food animals and should never enter the food chain. Our horses are medicated to maintain health and performance for the myriad of functions they perform in our society such as law enforcement, therapy, entertainment, work and service. During their lifetime, equines receive one or more medications that are expressly forbidden in food animals by our government as well as many foreign governments. The US must take the lead on food safety and recognize that US equines are not food animals. With no equine tracking system and no way to remove equines that do not meet food safety laws, the S.A.F.E. act should be passed and enacted swiftly. Without this food safety protection, the US could easily become embroiled in the same situation the EU is experiencing with the horse meat scandal that continues to grow.

The Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages strongly supports H.R. 1094: Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2013 because horse slaughter is inherently cruel--and also because of the obvious risk to public health. More than 80% of Americans oppose horse slaughter, an abomination that represents a misappropriation of our tax dollars. Horse meat is toxic and a public health risk; because horses are not food animals in the United States, there is no infrastructure for monitoring of the many drugs that are routinely administered to horses. We sincerely urge support and co-sponsorship of H.R. 1094, which would protect American horses and eliminate a reckless public health risk.

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Organizations Opposing

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? Unintended Consequences: The passage of this legislation, without adequate funding or an infrastructure in place to care for unwanted horses, will create a series of unintended consequences that negatively impact the health and welfare of the horse. ? Long-term placement of affected horses: Horse slaughter prevention legislation and appropriations riders fail to address how and where unwanted horses will be placed. If these bills are passed, tens of thousands of U.S. horses will need to be placed in alternative homes, or be euthanized and disposed of properly. o While there are many equine rescue and retirement facilities providing homes for unwanted horses, their care capacities range from five horses to, in a few cases, a maximum of 1,000 horses. The capacity at most facilities, however, is 30 horses or less. o In the first year alone of this ban, assuming an average capacity of 30 horses per facility, approximately 4,697 equine rescue facilities would be needed. Based on these numbers, there are currently not enough volunteers or placement opportunities to provide the level of care that will be required annually. o Many of these facilities are already at or near capacity. ? Animal Welfare: While many nonprofit equine rescue facilities are well run, regulations must be put in place to establish standards of care to ensure the humane treatment of these unwanted horses. ? Funding of care for unwanted horses: Horse slaughter prevention legislation and appropriations riders do not the address the funding required for care or euthanasia and disposal of tens of thousands of horses per year. The average cost to care for the unwanted horse is estimated at $3,648 per year.2 Inadequate funding often creates inadequate care, which is a significant welfare concern for unwanted horses. ? Current USDA Authority: Horse slaughter prevention legislation and appropriations riders could undermine current USDA efforts to enforce humane transportation standards for horses being transported for the purpose of slaughter. USDA is currently able to assess civil penalties of up to $5,000 per horse (per violation) of the USDA Slaughter Horse Transport Program. During a 2008 Judiciary Hearing on this issue, Mr. Pacelle, CEO of HSUS, suggested that the predominate animal welfare issue is NOT the method of euthanasia; but rather, inhumane transportation of horses over long distances that is so egregious. This being said, it is imperative that the USDA can continue to enforce the current statutes and ensure the HUMANE transportation of horses. The USDA is making improvements to this program, most recently with the release of their final rule on the Commercial Transport of Equines to Slaughter (!documentDetail;D=APHIS-2006-0168-0094) which extends authority over the entire transport chain of equines to slaughter. Previously regulations only covered horses from the last assembly point, feedlot, or stockyard to the border crossing with Canada or Mexico.

TITLE: Opposition to Any/All Horse Anti Slaughter Acts WHEREAS, we, the members of the National Congress of American Indians of the United States, invoking the divine blessing of the Creator upon our efforts and purposes, in order to preserve for ourselves and our descendants the inherent sovereign rights of our Indian nations, rights secured under Indian treaties and agreements with the United States, and all other rights and benefits to which we are entitled under the laws and Constitution of the United States, to enlighten the public toward a better understanding of the Indian people, to preserve Indian cultural values, and otherwise promote the health, safety and welfare of the Indian people, do hereby establish and submit the following resolution; and WHEREAS, the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) was established in 1944 and is the oldest and largest national organization of American Indian and Alaska Native tribal governments; and WHEREAS, the Tribes of the United States have for many years spent countless man hours and funding protecting and re-establishing the ecosystem from degradation; and WHEREAS, the Tribes of the United Stated are home to over 100,000 head of unclaimed/feral horses that are overgrazing and destroying the rangeland, valleys and hillsides of many reservations and that are damaging natural spring developments, efforts at stream bank restoration, and culturally significant plants; and WHEREAS, the tribes of NCAI have previously adopted NCAI resolution # NFG-09-017 in June 2009, “Opposition to Any/All Horse Slaughter Acts, Also Supporting a Tribal Amendment Allowing Tribes of Establish Horse Slaughter Facilities within Their Jurisdiction”; and WHEREAS, the Federal Government has a clear fiduciary trust responsibility to protect the interests of Tribal Nations as well as a duty to implement laws passed to benefit those Tribes, yet the Administration failed to consult as required by Executive Order 13175 or communicate with any Tribes prior to taking a position to propose appropriations language reinstating the ban on the funding of USDA Federal Safety Inspection Service to inspect horse meat, even though several tribes have requested consultation in writing on the language and the ban; and WHEREAS, various Members of Congress have sponsored legislation into the U.S. House of Representatives (H.R. 1094) and the U.S. Senate (S.541) entitled the Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2013, to restrict or prohibit the sale or transport of equines and equine parts raised in the United State in interstate or foreign commerce for human consumption; and WHEREAS, in 2011, a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report was conducted, (#11-228), “Action Need to Address Unintended Consequences from Cessation of Domestic Slaughter,” which revealed that as a result of the slaughter ban rider implemented in 2006, horses were transported longer distances to be slaughtered – to places where they are not covered by U.S. humane slaughter protections; and WHEREAS, the NCAI Economic Development and Land and Natural Resources committees agree the horse meat market represents the only economically viable means of reducing the size of feral herds damaging reservation environments and would further assist reservation horse producers who need to sustain their livestock operations, in the productive utilization of tribal and allotted lands; and WHEREAS, the National Tribal Horse Coalition (NTHC) is a sub-committee of Intertribal Agriculture Council (IAC) and requests that the Department of Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs provide a funding source for horse management practices on trust lands. NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that NCAI: opposes any legislation restricting horse processing, that removes funding of USDA inspectors of horse meat; opposes any legislation that restricts or prohibits the sale or transport of equines and equine parts raised in the United States in interstate of foreign commerce; supports authorizing tribes to establish horse processing facilities within their jurisdiction; supports a request for development of a BIA line item specific for management of overpopulation of horses from the Department of Interior; and calls on the U.S. Departments of Interior and Agriculture to support the tribes’ position opposing legislation that bans the processing of horses. BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that this resolution shall be the policy of NCAI until it is withdrawn or modified by subsequent resolution.

Users Supporting

I support H.R. 1094 (The Safe Act) because the equine slaughter pipeline is extremely cruel, horses are often transported in trailers built for livestock not horses and suffer serious injuries, horses are often crowded in and transported with stallions again with serious injuries as the consequence, horse meat is unfit for consumption, owners should not have to worry about their horses being stolen from their pastures by thieves feeding the slaughter pipeline, owners should not be afraid to sell their horses for fear that one day it could end up at slaughter, equine slaughter itself can not be done humanely due to the instinctive flight response horses have when they are afraid. Just watch the videos of actual horse slaughter and all the botched attempts and the horses left alive while being cut up. This is not something this country needs to be involved in, PLEASE STOP our horses going to slaughter. Here is a link to good, factual information:

1 year ago

I support H.R. 1094 Banning the slaughter of horses for human consumption because...we don't need horse meat to live!!

1 year ago

I support Banning the slaughter of horses for human consumption because...Horses are not raised for food in the U.S., nor should they be. That is for starters. Secondly, the method used to kill them is extremely cruel and is meant for cattle, whose necks are much shorter. Many times the horse moves it's head and the bolt used to kill only maims and leaves the horse alive while it is hung and slaughtered. CRUEL! Do the right thing and pass the SAFE act!

1 year ago

I support Banning the slaughter of horses for human consumption because...horses are not meant to be food. Many of our horses sent to slaughter from the United States have been treated with chemicals that cause disease in humans. The Slaughter of horses is inhumane. There are over 100,000 horses sent to an incredibly cruel death every year to Canada and Mexico. Pleasze take an active role in having the SAFE Act passed.

1 year ago

I support Banning the slaughter of horses for human consumption because...horses have carried us through thousands of years as a companion and helper ~ not as a food source. These animals are noble and magnificent creatures that should not have to suffer the most horrific death possible in a slaughter house. We need to honor these animals for all that they have gifted us throughout history. They are intelligent, emotional beings that we should not butcher and place on plates at dinner time. They deserve respect and honor.

1 year ago

I support Banning the slaughter of horses for human consumption because...its inhumane and unnecessary.

1 year ago

Users Opposing

I oppose H.R. 1094 Banning the slaughter of horses for human consumption. In America it is socially acceptable to slaughter cattle for meat, yet the exact same practices used on cattle are not acceptable for horses because they are viewed as companion, working, and sport animals. This bill is shortsighted and hypocritical. There is an unwanted horse overpopulation problem and this bill will just worsen it. Reopen plants and pay inspectors to regulate them. Give power to the inspectors. Let's get this right.

1 year ago

Horse meat is just as edible as cow, chicken, pig, fish, snake, eel, etc. so why prohibit an enterprising individual from pursuing whatever market there may be for horse meat?

1 year ago

I oppose Banning the slaughter of horses for human consumption because...I think it is a terrible time for this country when we are killing horses for human consumption. No one should ever have to eat horsemeat, we are not doing what is right. We need to protect these animals who without them our country would have not evolved. Please put an end to this atrocity. Thank you.

1 year ago

I oppose Banning the slaughter of horses for human consumption because...We don't need to kill and eat these beautiful animals. Please save them.

1 year ago

I oppose Banning the slaughter of horses for human consumption because... The ban is actually causing the ill treatment of horses. Many horse owners that cannot find a market for older or unwanted horses are simply starving these animals to death. Many of these horses would find a home if there was a market price that would be reasonable but without a slaughter market, people will not buy marginal horses when there are so many free horses available. Without predation or management, every animal will reach nuisance level. Coyotes, deer, rabbits or mice, without proper management these too could over use their environment and become a health issue.

1 year ago

I oppose Banning the slaughter of horses for human consumption because slaughter is an important part in the equine industry. While slaughter is an unpleasant concept, it is a necessary reality in the equine industry. All equine breeds have seen a decline in breeding, sales, and profits since the ban of slaughter since there is no longer an outlet for culls, crippled, and unwanted horses. This has caused a spike in abandoned and unwanted horses because the market has been crippled by the ban of slaughter. Horses are livestock and like other types of livestock (goats, sheep, cattle, etc) slaughter is an important way to manage number and eliminate the unwanted and unfit members of the breeding population. Please bring back slaughter and save the equine industry!

1 year ago

Bill Summary

Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2013 - Amends the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to prohibit the sale or transport of equines (horses and other members of the equidae family) or their parts (including flesh, meat, and viscera), or the importing or exporting of equines or their parts into or out of the United States, by any person who knows or should have known that such equines are to be slaughtered for human consumption as food.

H.R. 1093The No Knives Act H.R. 1095The TSA Loose Change Act