A Swedish rider is defending her actions after she ate meat from her horse Iffy after it was put down due to a severe leg injury.
Competitive harness racer and horse groomer Helena Ståhl posted a lengthy obituary to Iffy on Facebook last month, sparking a storm of controversy for her decision to eat the horse’s meat.
Stahl said it was one of the hardest decisions to put down her “best friend,” but deciding to save her meat was an easy one.
“Either I ate her up or the worms would,” she wrote.
She said Iffy’s body gave her 154 kg of meat that she shared with friends and family.
Critics have called Ståhl disrespectful and callous, but Stahl insists that eating an animal that’s had a good life is better than the way meat is largely consumed today.
“For me there were no alternatives since I think the meat industry is going in the wrong direction, and to eat an animal that had a good life felt right for me,” Ståhl told Swedish news organization The Local.
“I told my mother that if I could not eat meat from an animal that had a good life, I will never eat meat again.”
Swedish podcasters Alex & Sigge even went so far as likening eating Iffy to eating her grandmother.
But Ståhl shot back saying comparing animal flesh to human flesh was not logical.
Ståhl said she and her friends all had a positive reaction to Iffy’s meat, calling it “the most delicious meat they have ever eaten.”
“We need to understand that Iffy and other animals we eat are dead,” she wrote. “It’s about how we take care of the animals when they’re alive, not what we do with them later.”
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