The next move towards a ban on hot branding has been approved by Germany.

If the German parliament approves the measure this autumn, German studbooks will no longer be able to brand their horses.

The move has provoked strong opposition from the German warmblood associations since it was proposed in October 2010. And a 35,000-signature petition against the ban was collected by the German Equestrian Federation.

But last week German Minister of Agriculture Isle Aigner announced a hot branding ban will become an amendment to the country’s Animal Welfare Act when it is finalised later this year.

Hot branding is already outlawed in Denmark, Scotland and the Netherlands.

This news story was first published in the current issue of H&H (7 June 2012)