“The slaughtering of horses in the town of Kaufman began more than 25 years ago by the former owner of the plant.
The business from the beginning provided numerous jobs and injected millions of dollars into the local economy.
The business for many years enjoyed an excellent relationship with the community with no complaints.
It was only in the last couple of years prior to closing that the company came under attack, and this was primarily from sources outside the City of Kaufman.
When the attacks began against the Dallas Crown the same individuals and groups began their attacks against the two other horse slaughtering plants in existence at the time.
Although certain individuals with the city of Kaufman jumped on the band wagon and manufactured complaints against the company this was mainly brought on by the media attention.
The mayor, Paula Bacon, was able to get her 15 minutes of fame on Nightline and was subsequently defeated at the polls.
None of the alleged complaints brought by the city were ever prosecuted to a conclusion.
When the company shut down hundreds of individuals and families suffered financially and the City of Kaufman had nothing to offer them.
The meat processing business has often been unfairly criticized for its treatment of animals and this seems to play well to the media.
However this type of business has always been regulated and inspected by the USDA and numerous other state and Federal agencies.
While Dallas Crown was in operation there was a full time licensed Veterinarian who worked for the USDA on the premises and the company had an excellent record with this agency and others.
This type of business is not only necessary for many practical reasons it is an industry that is capable of supporting many jobs and producing home grown American made products.
The horse processing business supports and regulates the fair and humane treatment of animals more than any so called animal rights organization.
When the horse processing industry was forced to close in the United States the country suffered economically, but tragically, the horse population has suffered even more.”
~ Statement from Mark Calabria, posted by Slaughterhouse Sue as the `Truth about Kaufman’
If you have involved yourself in either side of the slaughter issue, you have heard about Kaufman, Texas. Both sides of the issue frequently mention this hapless town in support of their stances. Kaufman was home to Dallas Crown Inc., one of the last slaughter plants to be closed in the US. I’ve heard stories of blood in the streets, overwhelming stench, backed up sewage, and increased crime rate from the anti side. The PSA side will mostly tell you Kaufman never happened at all and that the plant was shut down by an `Animal Rights’ mayor. So, I decided to dig around and see what I could find out as far as what really happened in Kaufman.
Dallas Crown Inc. was a horse processing plant owned by the Belgian company Chevideco that began operating in Kaufman, TX in the late 70’s. This would be the same company that Slaughterhouse Sue wants to go into business with in her quest to bring back horse slaughter. One of the things The UH will tell people is that these proposed slaughter-houses will bring in all sorts of revenue to the horse industry and communities that host them. While it is true that slaughter houses exported an estimated 42 million dollars worth of meat a year, that money mostly went into the pockets of their foreign owners. In Dallas Crown’s case, it went to Belgium. Dallas Crown only paid a whopping $5 in federal taxes on a gross income of well over 12 million dollars (scans of tax returns linked below). Then factor in the cost of having federally funded USDA Inspectors in each and every facility. The average yearly salary for a slaughter-house worker according to simplyhired.com is $14000 and Dallas Crown Inc employed 46 non-unionized employees. Not sure about you, but a wage that low wouldn’t leave me with much of a disposable income to spend in the hosting community. In fact, it would seem to me that most of the money went straight over seas and only the bare minimum spent in the US. In cases like Kaufman, it ended up costing the town money through litigation fees, unpaid fines and upgrades to the city’s waste-water treatment. Dallas Crown paid property taxes that amounted to less than half of what they directly cost Kaufman in legal fees over their numerous violations.
Blood in the streets. Did it happen or not? It would seem the answer is yes and no. There was never a constant river of blood flowing through the streets of Kaufman, but over the years there as been numerous environmental issues with the waste from that facility and sometimes the blood did run . The most talked about incident from the PSA side was when a tanker carrying blood bi-products suffered a valve break and leaked its load throughout the town to the tune of 600 gallons. They will tell you it was cleaned up right away and although `unfortunate’ was hardly an environmental crisis. However, in the mid 80’s Dallas Crown had a year-long shut down after several months worth of incidents of blood waste backing up into citizen’s bathtubs and through drains on the street. This was due to Dallas Crown putting in a pump that forced the blood and waste through the city’s sewer systems that eventually burst the pipes. With promises of changes they restarted operations in early 1986, but shortly afterwards the fertilizer companies, that they told council they would be selling the blood to, rejected it as too toxic for commercial use, so once again, it was back in Kaufman’s sewage system. In one six-week period alone,29 waste-water violations were issued each with a potential fine of $2000. In a 19 month period between 2004 -2005 there were 481 violations until Dallas Crown refused to allow city engineers to enter the plant to do environmental tests for a period of 9 months. This appears to be more than one little `unfortunate’ incident.
Slaughterhouse Sue and her Belgian buddies want people to believe that having a slaughter plant is going to revitalize the hosting community. The good citizens of Kaufman may have some different feelings on this. Many people living in `Boggy Bottom’, the neighborhood bordering Dallas Crown, complained of stench of decay, increased vermin, and finding animal bones in their yards. It has been documented that Dallas Crown often left their offal tanks uncovered allowing vultures and rats to congregate. Their property values decreased and the crime rate increased. So much so that despite the economic crisis, since the closure of Dallas Crown, property prices have increased and the city is now in a development and expansion phase. Crime rates have dropped by more than half since the closing of Dallas Crown with drastic decreases in rape, murder, assault and robberies (http://www.city-data.com/crime/crime-Kaufman-Texas.html)
So, last week one of the PSAs asked about Kaufman on the United Horsemen page. While several chimed in, very few had any actual facts to back up their opinions. Finally, Old Suey popped up and posted the TRUTH ABOUT KAUFMAN, TEXAS AND THE DALLAS CROWN HORSE PROCESSING PLANT. Yes, she busted out the cap-lock on everybody so we know she’s really serious and stuff. Suey’s `proof’ was the `facts’ according to Kaufman resident and attorney, Mark Calabria that I posted at the top of this entry. What she failed to mention is Mark Calabria was the lead attorney for Dallas Crown. She further went on to say this:
“…we talked to the city engineer in Kaufman and it was literally, physically, impossible for blood to wind up in the city water treatment system, let alone the sewer system that connects people’s houses. There is no pipe from the kill floor blood collection which fed into a tank truck to be sold. So, the only blood that would wind up in the treatment plant whatsoever is the diluted blood in the wash down water, and that went through a DAF system (DAF stands for “dissolved air floatation”) before being discharged which removed all particulate and fat. The discharged wash down water from the plant was so clean, and in such volume compared to what was coming from the residential sewers that it was actually creating a problem for the water treatment operators because there wasn’t enough microbial action left to clean up the water. Also, all of the render including bones was hauled away daily. And the single incident where there was blood in the barrow pit was a broken valve on one of those blood trucks that was, as was noted here, contained and cleaned up within two hours.”
So, what about what happened in the 80’s when they got shut down for a YEAR due to them forcing blood into the sewage system? Also, they didn’t even kill every day and it was documented that the `render’ was maybe hauled away weekly and only once the bins were full. In the meantime, they were often left uncovered. It would stand to reason these`facts’ that Sue posts up may be more than a bit slanted. Given the actual facts compiled in this entry as well as the links below, you can decide for yourself what the truth about Kaufman really is.