Mixed Economic Outlook for Equine Industry in 2017

Some researchers and equestrians predict a rebound is coming, but not all horse industry members share the enthusiasm.

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Nearly a decade after the Great Recession began in December 2007 and economically decimated the equine industry, some researchers claim it is poised for a rebound. Still, some in the industry argue that the economic outlook is not as rosy as it might appear.

Between 2007 and 2016, some owners grappled with high financial costs associated with keeping their horses fed and cared for. As a result, some horses were relinquished to rescues, others were seized in criminal proceedings, and still more were sold. Horse show participation diminished and horse keeping consumable purchase plummeted.

A report recently published by the market research firm Packaged Facts suggests the U.S. equine products and services market registered a negative overall growth rate (-2.7%) between 2012 and 2016. Horse registrations in major breed associations fell to 140,000 in 2013 from a high of 328,000 in 2002, the report said.

However, the report indicates that at the industry’s economy appears to be leveling off. The report says the American Horse Publications’ 2015 Equine Industry Survey showed that 70.6% of respondents own or manage the same number of horses they did in 2014, while 88.6% expected to own or manage the same number or more in 2016

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Written by:

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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