No horse slaughter plant for Mountain Grove, Mo.
That’s fine with folks there. In a public meeting last week, they shouted down the plan for an operation that would kill up to 400 horses a day with the meat — roasts, briskets and steaks for human consumption — going to Europe and elsewhere. Another meeting was held Monday.
On Tuesday, Unified Equine, run by a Wyoming state legislator named Sue Wallis, and Chevideco, a Belgian company, announced they would look elsewhere.
The message from Mountain Grove?
“Go home!” attorney Cynthia MacPherson, who led the city’s attack, told The Star on Tuesday. “If we have a horse problem we’ll solve it ourselves. We don’t need her (Wallis) and a Belgium company coming in here.”
Wallis could not be reached for comment. But she told a Springfield TV station that the backers remained committed to finding a location in southwest Missouri.
“Make all the noise you want, we’re going into business,” Wallis told KY3.
Backers of the slaughter plant like the area because of what they believe is a good transportation hub and a large population of surplus horses.
They tried to sell the idea to Mountain Grove by touting jobs and tax revenue, but residents were more convinced by stories of community stigma, stench and environmental havoc.
Supporters of the plant said it is needed to accommodate old horses who end up suffering because owners don’t have a place to take them.
But the company’s own literature says the plant would not be for old or sick horses and it did not rule out breeding for slaughter purposes.