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.