South Dakota Legislators Gear Up For Horse Slaughter Plant

South Dakota SB 170 would allow an equine slaughter plant to be built

A hearing to be held in a South Dakota Senate Agriculture Committee meeting Jan. 29 will analyze the viability of new legislature that may set the wheels in motion for the construction of an equine slaughter facility in that state. South Dakota Senate Bill 170, introduced by several state senators and representatives, would authorize a loan from the state’s Regional Economic Development fund for the purpose of constructing an equine processing facility in South Dakota.

According to language from the bill, the loan is not to exceed one million dollars and would be used to fund a local industrial development corporation that would “provide for the design, construction, completion, equipping, and maintaining of an equine processing facility to be located on state, tribal, or private lands in South Dakota and if needed, a mutually acceptable assignment of revenues which meets all the needs of all parties involved with such a facility.” A vote on the bill has not been scheduled.

The American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act (H.R. 503/S. 311), a federal bill that was reintroduced to the current Congress, would make it illegal to slaughter horses for human consumption and would also outlaw the domestic and international transport of horses to slaughter. However, the federal legislation has not been voted on yet this year, and it’s unknown when — and if — Congress will get to it.



  1. What kind of insanity is it to suggest that South Dakota loan state funds for the start up of a horse slaughter facility? I am appalled on so many levels. The state is not business entity and should not work as such. Besides it would be a huge waste of money. The other horse slaughter plants have closed due to overwhelming public opposition and the legislators want to blatantly fly in the face of that. What happens if the national bill to ban horse slaughter passes? The plant will have to close anyway and is anyone naïve enough to think the loan will be repaid at that time? Why invite another foreign company that will export the entire product, pay less taxes than we do, and corrupt the environment further, to operate in the state? That is exactly what took place in Illinois and Texas (sights of the other horse slaughter facilities). What makes anyone think it would be any different in South Dakota?

  2. These places need to be closed down. I’m sorry I just do not believe in slautering horses. I own horses I would never in my mind do this to a horse. I know horses are expensive to take care of I am sure there are many people in the US would love to take them. If I knew how to get one I would take one in a heart beat. We need to stop this.

  3. I think that is good. It would cut down on travel time for the horses that are going across borders and it would be more humane for them. Also with the amount of horses in the States, the horse market is pretty well shot. You can get a pretty good horse especially a young one for fairly cheap.

  4. I can’t believe – after all the uproar and closing of equine processing plants in other states etc – that ANY legislators in their right mind would even consider allowing the construction of a new plant, let alone with state funding!!! Unbelievable!!! When is it going to stop?

  5. I hope this comment does not anger people,BUT it has to be said:”If this slaughter plant is more HUMANE then the 2 in Texas,and the 1 in Illinois,why not?”There are SO MANY Unwanted horses,and SO MANY Neglected,some owners can’t pay for the VERY high Euthanasia cosnts,and we have to face it!Horses can’t be just Shipped to Mexico,stuck in a trailer for days! It needs to be done in the U.S…In a much more humane way,also.To the people who say that slaughter is not nescessary;you need to think about only care about your horses,none of the neglected,or unwanted.Start caring more….Slaughter(if humane)IS NESCESSARY!!!!

  6. What kind of insanity would lead a state to looking at slaughtering these most magnificent creatures??? It makes me wonder about the future of America…that we do not respect life, especially life that so easily has accepted us!!! How will we raise our children to love and cherish the animals that sustain us and bring us such love and pleasure??? What kind of human being could look into those intelligent eyes and lead them off to a slaughter house??? It makes me sick to my stomach…and wondering about our place in this world!!

  7. What has the US come to when horses qualify as food!!!!! Horses are divine like creatures and look thur the eyes of GOD. Just take time to observe thier behavior you may feel closer to God!!!!

  8. Abby in Oskalosa YT just because you don’t care for horses other than you own that does not reflect REAl horses lovers views should we kill neglected children next!!!!

  9. well with our poor horses going to mexico getting stabbed to death, i am glad we are getting a slaughter house in the states. I dont agree with slaughter houses but a nail in the head is better than being stabbed to death!

  10. omg! everything bad that has to do with horses is on my bday! like last year barbaro was put down on “Jan.29” and this year their planning to open a new slaughtr plant?! seriously?! huh!!

  11. I really thought this was a very informative article that stated the awful facts about people who have absolutely no heart for anything but themselves. I think that horse slaughter all over the world should be banned from existence. I hope that these misled people would stop this horrible act for many people who have supported horse slaughter have said that they have had awful regrets about it later on. Even though after it is all said and done, they can’t take it back.I think that this artle was a good one but i do hope that some people will wake up and realize that horses are NOT DISPOSABLE!!!!
    if you would like to have a conversation with me about this issue, do a horse profile search, my horse’s names are Paintbrush, Gracie, Patriot, and Eagle Eyed Cowboy

  12. o and i also forgot to say that if people want to slaughter horses, they should just remember that the west was NOT won on bulls, nope what did they ride, HORSES!!! horses are what helped build America we cannot let them die with such a disgrace without even caring about what they do for us every day.

  13. I just want to add a comment from a horse lover who has seen many, too many horses that have reached a point of so poor a condition that it makes me sad to see how much money people are throwing away to save a sickly animal, especially when there are so many healthy horses that are being given away to a good homes just for the taking. The one positive note to having an equine slaughter facility within the US and centrally located is that the horses that have reached no return can be spared long drives to facilities at our borders. The horses I’ve observed at many horse rescues are nothing but skin and bones, hay is in short supplies and costs nearly $8-10/bale. The cost of grain is steadily rising. What I do want to see at these facilities is a brand inspector watching 24/7 for stolen or horses with a tatoos. Precautions must be laid down so that this facilities doesn’t buy these already owned horses. This is just my opinion and I have a few horses also.

  14. Fifteen years ago I purchased my now 18 year old TB mare from a local facility known to ship horses to New York for slaughter. Though I love her to death, I believe the slaughter of livestock including horses is a viable option for several reasons. Rescues are becoming overcrowded and a threat to the horses themselves, euthanasia is not an option in all communities because burial is not legal(the livestaock must be sent to a rendering plant and in most cases will not take them with chemicals in the bloodstream)people are illegally dumping sick, diseased and frail animals on federal rangeland and other owners are just leaving the horses to waste away in their pastures until the local government seizes them. A plant in the midwest was closed this past year by law. They processed 150,000 horses a year. Where do you suggest we place these animals? They now will suffer a drawn out, horrid, abandoned life that will result in their demise by the extremes or wild predators. THAT is inhumane.
    ALL slaughterhouses should be regulated and treat ALL animals humane from pigs, to cows, to chickens. Suposidly, a pig has as much intelligence as a human. Why are we eating them and raising them om concrete slabs? Each is used by us so they deserve dignity until the end.
    Your good intentions to close down slaughterhouses has created a ripple effect of crowded, unsanitary and dangerous rescue facilities as well as a spike in abandoned horses left to die in the wilderness.
    Be careful of what you wish for…

  15. Horse slaughter is animal crulty. So it should not be aloud to build a slaughter plant in South Dakota if horse lovers want to stop horse slaughter not increse it!


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