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Horses, Export And Slaughter (Committee)

Volume 463: debated on Monday 4 April 1949

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asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he has now completed his consideration of the value under which a horse may not be exported from this country, and if, to prevent the export of horses for butchery, he will introduce legislation to raise the amounts under the Exportation of Horses Act, 1937, to £80 for heavy draft horses, £60 for tanners and £10 for asses.

It has now been decided, as announced in the House on 21st March, to set up a committee to inquire into questions concerning the slaughter of and traffic in horses. I think it desirable that this matter should be considered in the light of their report.


asked the Minister of Agriculture if he is now able to announce the names of the committee which is to inquire into the slaughter of horses, and the scope of the inquiry.


asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he will now announce the terms of reference and the names of the members of the committee he is setting up to inquire into the traffic in horses to Belgium and elsewhere.

The terms of reference to the committee will be to inquire into

  • (1) the extent of the export trade in horses for (a) work and (b) slaughter and the considerations affecting the continuance of the trade for either purpose;
  • (2) the extent of the practice of slaughtering horses for food for human and animal consumption in this country; and the considerations affecting the continuance of the practice;
  • (3) the effect of the export and slaughter of horses on the supply of working horses in this country;
  • (4) the desirability or otherwise of encouraging the breeding of horses for slaughter;
  • (5) the statutory provisions designed to prevent unnecessary suffering by horses while being transported by air, rail, road or sea and in the slaughter-houses; whether such provisions are adequate and whether they are properly enforced; and to make recommendations.
  • I am glad to say that the Earl of Rosebery has consented to be the chairman of the committee. The names of the other members will be announced as soon as possible.