Spate Of Horsemeat Recalls For First Quarter 2017 – Veterinary Drugs and Traceability Still Issues in Canada And Abroad

Coming on the heels of an announcement that Les Viandes de la Petite Nation slaughter plant in Saint-André-Avellin PQ has temporarily closed due to the non-availability of horses to slaughter, the CHDC has recently been following several recalls of horsemeat/carcasses in several countries.  The recalls have been issued for horse products from Canada, Denmark, and Austria and show that phenylbutazone (bute) is still getting through to the marketplace and traceability is still subject to possible fraud.

It appears that a recall from Viande Richelieu may be associated with a recall from the Metro Store chain,  so this contamination was not caught until the product made its way into the supply chain on its way to the customer.

Bute is used as an analgesic and anti-inflammatory medication in horses,  and it is associated with serious blood disorders in humans such as aplastic anaemia, where the body does not make enough new blood cells. Due to the widespread use of phenylbutazone in horses, these latest recalls simply reveal the tip of an iceberg in a troubled industry.

Please note that Metro Richelieu is a division of the Metro stores and not of Viande Richelieu. Metro stores are a chain of 600 operating in Ontario and Quebec.


Horse meat recalled from Viande Richelieu after making its way through the supply chain.


Horse carcasses originating in Austria recalled in Italy due to falsified horse passports


Chilled horse carcasses from Denmark removed from the market due to poor traceability/unfit for human consumption


Frozen horse meat originating from Canada recalled in France due to residues of oxyphenylbutazone (metabolite of phenylbutazone).


  1. I couldn’t care less if every person who eats or buys horsemeat dies a gruesome death, and even better if the kill buyers, shippers, kill plant owners and workers, and every horse owner who irresponsibly breeds or sells their horses joins them. The saddest thing about this news is that these poor horses suffered and died, only to be declared contaminated, yet the thousands who weren’t tested were considered edible. Everyone with half a brain knows it would be next to impossible to find a horse that has never had bute, wormer , furacin, or a multitude of other medications, yet the CFIA continues to allow these poor horses to be murdered in these hellholes, knowing their corpses would be discarded as garbage if they were ever tested. It’s pathetic the crimes that the Canadian goverment is complicit in, and the victims are usually animals or the environment.

  2. coltswesternshop · · Reply

    It’s nice to know they are Still Only spot checking for Only one drug so much for Food Safety.

  3. Brigit Paul · · Reply

    How can I help?

    B. Paul 647-838-1436

    On Sun, Apr 16, 2017 at 11:39 PM, Canadian Horse Defence Coalition’s Blog wrote:

    > canadianhorsedefencecoalition posted: “Coming on the heels of an > announcement that Les Viandes de la Petite Nation slaughter plant in > Saint-André-Avellin PQ has temporarily closed due to the non-availability > of horses to slaughter, the CHDC has recently been following several > recalls of horsem” >

  4. judye822 · · Reply

    Bute, to me, is horsey aspirin. My horses had it last night, this morning and will again this evening — all because they’re receiving some vaccinations later this morning. I’ll do another three-feeding session for their shoeing and trimming this weekend. My 32-year old needs it to help limber him — in addition to his other supplements which keep him comfortable and are NOT INTENDED FOR USE IN HORSES FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION!
    Bute is a way of life!

    Sent from my iPad

  5. Barbara Griffith · · Reply

    It looks like the crooked industry has finally been exposed for what it really is. You wonder just how many people that have been eating horse meat have come down with one of the diseases that Bute along with all the other Vet medications can cause. Some of the race horses from the U.S. were being given everything under the sun to get them to run faster to win races. If they lost, off to the slaughter plant they went. Feeding the horses for 6 months hoping Bute will leave the system is wishful thinking, it does not leave the horses system no matter how long its in the feed lot. 99% of horses from the U.S are given Bute so Canada might as well not allow any U.S. horses from the U.S to be slaughtered because of the fraud and corruption involved in the slaughter industry. If it can be proven that horse meat from one of the markets was the cause of one of the diseases that market could be sued and forced to pay damages to the customer or customers in other words it could put them out of business.

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