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TEEN ESSAY: Think twice before charging into debate over eating horses

Ever had horse meat before? Actually, you may have.

Recent studies have exposed a multitude of products that contain horse meat.

This controversy exploded when the Food Safety Authority of Ireland was conducting an examination on beef products and found that 10 out 27 products contained horse DNA. Then, upon further inspection, they realized that one of the patties they inspected came from Tesco, the British equivalent of Safeway.

Astonishingly, over a quarter of this patty contained horse meat!

Not long after, the Swedish food supplier Findus began examining its lasagna and found that more than 60 percent contained horse meat.

This created a domino effect that caused companies all over the world to recall their products for examination.

In reaction to this controversy, Erica Meier, a writer for Philly.com, found that "20 percent of UK consumers are eating less meat and 7 percent stopped eating meat altogether."

The fact that people have stopped consuming meat products is a testament to how drastically the idea of what we eat affects our lives.

Dan Deely, a captain of Sonoma Valley's varsity football team last fall raised an important question: "Why do people think it's OK to eat chicken and cows, yet they are against eating a horse?"

There are no health reasons why we should not eat horses. Chris Elliot, a professor of food safety and microbiology at Queen's University Belfast found that "the presence of horseflesh in our meals does not directly pose a threat to health."

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