Norval Meats Permanent Closure and Memorial

Norval Meats, Ontario’s last horse slaughter plant, has recently been removed from the list of federally inspected plants.

In February 2010 a suspicious fire closed the facility, but only in March 2011 was Norval Meats’ name removed from the list of federally inspected plants and its closure became official.

When the CHDC had a memorial at Saskatchewan’s closed Natural Valley plant, the response was overwhelming. So we planned another memorial for the horses who perished at Norval Meats. In April, we gathered at the plant in Proton Station, Ontario, to lay flowers, poems and tributes at the site where so many horses lost their lives.

From the tribute:

Today, we’re here to pay tribute to the thousands of horses who suffered betrayal, fear and pain at this slaughter plant, Norval Meats. We celebrate its closure, but continue in our mission until every plant in Canada is closed and every horse, pony, mule and donkey is safe.

We lay here a rose for each of you and for all the many thousands of others. Like all of you, roses are unique among species, with their beauty, grace and strength.

We have seen your anguish, our dear friends, and we promise to continue to speak out on your behalf, until the suffering ends. We have heard your cries and, like the thorns protecting the rose, we shall forever work to protect you and stop the suffering.

We patronize them for their incompleteness, for their tragic fate for having taken form so far below ourselves. And therein do we err. For the animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours, they move finished and complete, gifted with the extension of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear. They are not brethren, they are not underlings: they are other nations, caught with ourselves in the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendour and travails of the earth.

~ Henry Beston