Global Horse Trade in the United States: 1981-2013

In: Society & Animals

Abstract

Similar to other commodities, US sport horses have increasingly been outsourced. The sport horse commodity chain is a long process involving many actors. The data presented document a shift away from US-born horses to those born in Europe. Since the 1980s, the American sport horse market has become a global market. Over $300 million dollars in horses are imported into the United States, and over a third comes from Germany. These foreign horses have uprooted the domestic supply of sport horses, who were US-born ex-racehorses. This research relies on import data to document the transition from a domestic market to a global market. This transformation has wide-reaching implications for the equestrian industry in the US. Through analysis of import statistics, content analysis, and participant observation, data are presented that illustrate how equestrian show jumping changed as a result of the dependence on European supplies of horses.

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