Albuquerque, N.M. • A federal judge on Friday cleared the way for horse slaughterhouses to resume operating in the U.S. as early as next week.
U.S. District Judge Christina Armijo in Albuquerque threw out a lawsuit by The Humane Society of the United States and other animal protection groups that alleged the Department of Agriculture failed to conduct proper environmental studies when it issued permits to Valley Meat Co. in Roswell, N.M., and an Iowa company to slaughter horses for human consumption.
The decision ends, for now, a two-year battle by Valley Meat to open the slaughterhouse.
The Iowa company converted to cattle because of the court fight. But attorneys say Valley and Rains Natural Meats of Gallatin, Mo., are poised to open as early as Monday.