Compared to lean beef, horse meat appears to have some nutritional advantages. Image courtesy of Tambako the Jaguar/Flickr.
There's been much hoopla this week over the ethical and cultural implications of eating, you guessed it, horse meat. The discussion was sparked by the Summit of the Horse, a conference that convened the past 4 days in Las Vegas. The agenda of the conference was to “Restore humane and regulated horse processing,” that is, horse slaughter for human consumption.
Though the topic is controversial, what's one man's pet is another man's dinner. Horse meat consumption has been growing rapidly for the last several years in France, and is common in several other cultures including Belgium, Germany and Switzerland. In Japan, you can even get horse sushi.
But once we get past the sentiment and politics of eating Sea Biscuit, how healthy is horse meat?
Horse is generally leaner than cow. (Errr, beef—for starters, why doesn't horse meat get a cuter, less offensive name like beef or venison? Just saying.) And those who have tasted it describe it as having a “sweeter” flavor. For this article I chose a fairly lean, grass-fed strip steak for comparison.