Many residents of Enugu metropolis say they now eat horse meat following the high cost of pork, beef and chicken. A visit to some of the selling points of horse meat, called anyinya, shows the influx of the high and the low purchasing the delicacies.
A school principal at a secondary school in Enugu, on condition of anonymity, said, “The current economic situation has made it imperative that we buy horse meat. It was unfancied before now, but the reality is that horse meat is the cheapest so far. Of late, the demand is increasing, and that is also increasing the prices. But it is relatively cheaper.”
Another buyer said, “I run a restaurant. My customers don’t complain if I serve them horse meat. Before, people don’t patronise it, but the high cost of chicken and goat meat has made horse meat the only option. If I buy N10, 000 worth of horse meat, I make huge profits, and my customers feel satisfied. That for me is business.”
A consumer, Oliver Igboke, said he enjoys horse meat because it has low calories. According to him, “I read online that it has low calories. How true it is, I don’t know, but I enjoy it. It does not have fat. And with N2, 000, one can make a good purchase of horse meat. If you take the same amount to buy goat meat, you will regret it.”
A student at Emene, Enugu, Uchenna Oko, said, “When beef became too expensive, we resorted to pork. Nowadays, the cost of pork has risen. Chicken is not affordable, not to talk of beef. If we must eat protein, horse meat is the way for now.”
A seller, Mama Oyibo, said, “The market is getting good everyday. People are no longer ashamed of eating horse meat. The price is also increasing as demands increase. It nourishes the body very well.”
According to horseracingsense.com, “Many drugs are administered over a horse’s lifetime that you cannot legally give to animals raised for human consumption. Horses receive de-wormer medication, antibiotics, and diurectics, making their meat dangerous for humans to eat.”
However, phyllimag.com writes about its health benefits. According to the website, “Horse meat is not only high in protein, but less cholesterol and twice as much iron and Vitamin B as beef. It also contains fewer calories, and a significantly higher omega-3 fatty acid concentration (that’s the good fat)—with 360 mg per 100 grams serving, compared to just 21 mg in a beef steak.”